It’s been a couple days since my last post, rest assured, I’m alive and well and still sleeping in 5 star accommodations i.e. hammock on the beach. I’ve got to first start by saying, It’s fascinating how God works in ways that we can’t begin to understand. I know, that’s pretty deep and you may not believe in God but let’s just agree that innately we all have a feeling or emotion that identifies significant events as being omniscient, otherwise something has a role in what takes place.
A Walking on Water Production
With that, I was sitting on the sand yesterday after a surf sesh at Off the Wall and saw a massive film crew descend on the beach with a group of surfers. I sat up sleepily off my sun bum towel out of curiosity to spot a familiar face down the way. Is that Bryan Jennings? It was… It was the pro surfer from one of my favorite movies called Walking on Water. In the movie he took two random groms on a surf trip around the world exposing them to cultures, waves, and meaningful life experiences.
I snapped a few shots of Bryan and what appeared to be the famous “Blind Surfer” from Brazil as they came and went in and out of the water. Not an hour later I see Bryan walking down the beach so I greeted him halfway between my towel and where he was heading. Hey Bryan, “Nick Mohnacky, (handshake) I just want to let you know I love the movies you all are creating at Walking on Water Productions especially Noah’s Ark, that was my favorite. Oh, and I spent some time in San Clemente with Todd Morehead and in New York City with Mike Doyle. (all guys that work(ed) for the company). Bryan: Really? Wow, small world! Where are you from? What do you do? (as if he already knew)
Me: I’m from West Palm Beach, and I have a tech agency that does video production and animation. Bryan: (without hesitation) Perfect, we’re looking for some more help on this video maybe you can help us with titles and effects, walk with me I’ll tell you more about it. Well first off, it’s a movie that we didn’t even plan on making, but God had His hand in it and we felt compelled to tell the remarkable story of Derek Rabelo, a blind surfer.
I spent about 20 minutes with Bryan, listening and feeding off his passion for story telling and people. We exchanged contact info and Mahalo’s, so I guess we’ll see where it takes us. (no expectations just happy to have shared a moment with he and Derek)
Surfing on a Lay Day
Bear with me as I work my way backwards here as the prior conversation was near the close of the day with the sun setting over Kaena Point.
It was a lay day for the event, which means they didn’t run the contest because the waves were too small; pipe was bout 3-4 ft (hawaiian). This was good for me because it gave me the chance to surf a fairly uncrowded Off the Wall and Backdoor delivering fun head high barrels. Man, even at that size, the ocean is angry as the lips come heaving over themselves crashing down on the reef with incredible power. I saw an Oakley team rider paddle out and literally in less than 10 minutes paddle back in with half a board in hand. Insane!
After about half hour, 3 waves, a solid barrel and a couple fun off the tops I was starting to feel pretty confident about the 6’3 firewire (rental) pin tail under my feet. The board was a little long for my liking but the extra foam and the hard lines allowed me to get into the waves with ease and gave me a much needed second longer to set my rail in the pocket. If you haven’t surfed Pipeline, Backdoor, or Off the Wall then you need to know that it is SHALLOW, I mean really shallow. I caught a left at Off the Wall straight into the inside reef at Backdoor and literally jumped off my board butt first after coming out of a sick little barrel and slammed right onto the reef. Holy Mother that hurt!! It couldn’t have been more than two feet deep.
Check out this photo of a guy getting tended to yesterday. Ouch…
The Starbucks’ Experience
As I grow older, I’m learning that life is all about experiences and relationships, of which this trip and others like it are examples of that. I’ve been to this Starbucks every morning for the past few days and fundamentally, it’s no different than the one I sit at after swim practice in Palm Beach Gardens. People gathering over an early morning brew chatting about life experiences, simply connecting with each other on the daily. The differences are revealed in the people and the stories. You see, it just so happens that this Starbucks is full of surfing legends, Olympic photographers, CEOs dressed in flip flops and boardshorts, and veterans of war. I’m also starting to learn that even though, I’ve been homeless for days, I look and smell like everyone else around me… Maybe it’s because I’ve made good use of the public facilities that are probably less sanitary than the ones in foreign countries. I don’t know, but either way, I’ve learned that being homeless here is way too easy here.
Ok, I need to look up my bus route/times back to the airport. I’ll leave you with some photos until next time.