"I told myself to forget about what everyone else thinks and do what I want to do!"—Bernd
The event itself was pretty small compared to the BOP but for its first time it was a good size expo! I talked with everyone and introduced some product, and then I went and surfed!
The wave was right in front of a river mouth so it was unbelievably messy due to the current. There was also wind on it, which didn't help. The wave was head to over sometimes and you could only really work the whitewater since it closed out fast. You would do one or two turns on the wave and then work the wash in to the inside left where it opened up a bit. But in order to catch the wave you had to fight with the current and the relentless waves to get to the line up. Once there, every wave that came was impossible to read and picking the wrong wave meant having to struggle for at least five minutes to get out again, fifteen if you got caught in a set. After an hour it seemed like a losing battle, I saw many people standing on the beach watching and felt embarrassed to be doing so badly! Then there was a surf exhibition while I was out paddling that I missed because I couldn't understand the Japanese announcements, Takasan was teaching in his class, and Marosan was in an appointment, so I didn't get the memo! I felt frustrated that I missed it. I felt like that expo was my time to shine! Everything was going wrong and I felt like the whole event was a waste! That’s when my Granduncle came into mind again, his attitude towards my dream and me seemed almost right at this point. Maybe I should give up on the pro thing and just go to school like everyone else. Maybe I wasn’t the one to become successful in another direction. Maybe I should just go back to the beach. But no! I couldn’t go back to the beach, I wouldn’t! I told myself to forget about what everyone else thinks and remember what I think, what I want to do, and my dreams! Then an over-head wave rolled through and broke way outside! As the whitewater rushed toward me it reformed and I caught it right! Then the wave pitched as it hit this sandbar and I carved around and stuck my nose into the wave, as the wave hit me I redirected back down while covered in foam! I worked the whitewater with an aggression that I had never really felt before. Then all of the sudden the wave reformed again! But this time it was a left so I switched stances and pumped down the line to the shoulder. When I got there I started hacking and slashing all the way back to the beach where I ran straight into the sand and face-planted! I lift my head up off the sand, panting, and got up. I brushed myself off and then my Mom and Grandma came over to me. Just then I heard something in Japanese over the loudspeaker and then heard my name spoken. I looked a question at my Grandma and she said “They’re saying good things about you.” Then my Mom said “They did the exhibition where you were surfing anyways so you were basically in it.” “Lots of people were watching the event and they were watching you too!” That made me feel a lot better!
What happened that day was I let other people get into my head and tell me what I could and couldn’t do, I’ll never let that happen again.
At the end of the day I was stoked to have had a good session and ready to go back to Tokyo. I went with Marosan to his college team's football game and then to my Grandma's friend's place in Tokyo. The next morning we did some sight seeing in Harajuku, went up the Tokyo Tower, and rode the huge ferris wheel at night. The next day we flew back to Maui and I had a lot of time to think about what happened on the trip. I was happy with what I did and how I did it, which is all that matters.