Last year at this time none of us had ever been on a surfboard apart from Michael (12 years prior when he lived in LA, but that was a lifetime ago!). When we set off on this adventure we had no idea that surfing would become a guiding theme, leading us in directions we might never have otherwise gone.
It all started with a few surf lessons in Brazil. The next thing we knew we were buying wetsuits and a ‘foamie’ to surf the chilly waters of Uruguay. Then we were rearranging our flights and searching for spots with the best waves in Chile. Back in July when we booked a campervan to tour New Zealand we never imagined it would become a ‘surf-mobile,’ but there we were each day, reading wave reports on our phones and seeking out random surf spots in far off corners of the country. Cut to today and we have three surfboards in our ‘quiver’ that are almost always on our roof rack (you never know when you might happen upon a break in Australia). And as we make our way through the airports our modest stash of luggage has been supersized by two giant board bags, making the rounds with us.
Easton told me the other day that he doesn’t remember what it was like to not be a surfer. It’s a passion that feels so natural he said it’s weird to think of himself as someone who had never surfed before–who didn’t know the feeling of riding a wave. Surfing has become such a huge part of his life in the past seven months that he no longer recognises the boy he used to be. We keep joking that with his sun-bleached hair, sun-kissed skin and ‘surfy’ vibe, nobody in London will recognise him either!
It’s not just Easton. Michael is equally obsessed, and Quin and Ivy, though less fanatical, get out on the waves nearly every time we go to the beach. Surfing has become a routine part of our daily schedule, with trips to the beach squeezed in on either side of our home-schooling lessons nearly every day (I have never heard Michael speak about wind direction and ocean swells with such concern as he does now, plotting out which beach to visit depending on the conditions).
Our favourite break has been The Pass in Byron Bay. It’s famous for its right-hand point break and consistently good waves, perfect for all abilities. We’d usually arrive to The Pass in the afternoon. We’d set up our camp on the small beach, lay out our big, stripy towel and kick off our shoes. Before I knew it the boys would be on the waves while the girls and I collected seashells or played in the tide pools, cheering the boys on each time they caught a wave. After a busy morning of house chores, work and homeschool, this was the perfect way to slow down and unwind for the afternoon. We’d usually watch the sun go down from our little perch on the beach, reminded of another day’s end and how lucky we are to be spending these days together as a family.
Raegan Glazner joined us at The Pass earlier this month for an interview feature in The Grace Tales and snapped these photos for us. I am so thankful to have these as a way to document our happy days in Byron Bay (and Easton is especially excited to have photos to show his friends!). Thank you, Raegan!