“The waves look good over there,” says my charismatic surfer friend pointing enthusiastically at the breaking surf. We pick up our surfboards and walk along the beach, the sand squeaking under foot. Cotton ball clouds are suspended above and a steady offshore breeze sculpts the waves into flawlessly shaped peaks. The conditions are perfect.
We’re at Playa Hermosa, a mile long sand beach that catches swells year round. Access has improved, but you still have to navigate a winding dirt track to get here from San Juan del Sur. I’m not complaining; the bumps and river crossings help keep paradise intact a little longer.
We paddle out through the whitewash and claim our spots among the waves. My companion fixes her eyes on the horizon and becomes one with the rhythm of the ocean. Suddenly she turns, paddles hard, catches a wave and rides it down the line. Then another… and another… all of them head-high. It seems so effortless.
Surfing does not come so easily to me. But even when I struggle to catch a wave, simply feeling the connection with the beautiful ocean landscape as I bob around in the warm water moves me into a blissful state.
“This is the life,” my companion says, grinning widely after another smooth ride.
We stay in the water for the next two or three hours. At one stage we’re totally alone. The dive-bombing pelicans and the first streaks of sunset distract me, but my companion stays in the zone calmly looking out to sea for signs of the next set.
Our time eventually runs out and we reluctantly step out from our sunset surf session. We rinse off and plop under a shade palapa for a cool drink.
I resolve to come again the next day. After all if I practice enough maybe someday I’ll also be able to surf some head high waves – not just fall into them. (Although I have to say, some of my wipe-outs are spectacular.)