There couldn’t be a better time to get away. With so many uncertainties in the world right now, perhaps it’s time to ask ourselves ‘what is this life all really about?’ A little too deep? Maybe…but really, for us surfers it’s times like these that can draw us to the chase of surf across the globe, searching for those peaceful, blissful moments when we are nothing but one with nature.
Kuni enjoyed a couple of weeks away from the stresses of Japan life and jumped back into that amazing flow of eat, sleep, surf (and for him, shoot!) in Byron Bay, Australia. Asked to shoot a private surf tour presented for Japanese surfers by Surfing Byron Bay and World Surfaris Japan, Kuni eagerly accepted and Mother Nature was kind. Everyday the swell sent waves to the degree requested in dreams; offshore, punchy but not too powerful and breaking in mostly uncrowded clear waters. There were even days where waves were shared with dolphins, turtles and I do believe there were whale sightings. Doesn’t get much better than that.
Surfing Byron Bay’s head guide Serena Adams has a healthy surfing appetite, fuelled by a lifetime in the water. At nearly 40yrs old, mother of two Serena has spent well over a decade up on the east coast of Australia running Surfing Byron Bay; one of the few fully licensed surf schools in the area.
Earlier this year, Surfing Byron Bay hooked up with Japan’s leading surf tour company, World Surfaris Japan, and began small scale, personalized surf guiding around the Byron Bay area. Since the outbreak of the disaster in Japan, it is with great pleasure that these guys have kept their tours open and flexible, offering Japanese a chance to get away from the radiation and take a break in the natural, clear waters Australia is plentiful with.
Now couldn't be a better time to assess life and the paths we are walking or stumbling along. Without a doubt the world has become polluted with materialistic desires and as we want more and more we begin to lose a grasp of reality and what is really important. I see surfers here in Chiba close their eyes to the obvious radiation issue standing by their need to keep on with ‘business as usual’, and I think, for what? for whom? And I wonder everyday why there hasn’t been more of an effort from the Japanese surf industry into ocean contamination research and methods to decontaminate naturally. The answer is clear however…money keeps the industry afloat.
But even all the money in the world isn’t going to keep the earth afloat, not with the way our human minds have been tuned…
I hope that with honest, natural companies like Surfing Byron Bay and World Surfaris that many of us can revisit the true adventurous and natural spirit of surfing. There’s something truly special about surf travel, and yet expedition alone has become almost a frightening thing in this current age. Thanks to these local, low-key companies, surfing with friendly faces in new locations has become easier than ever and with every ounce of care taken to maintain the beauty of each break and respect for the locals.
Kuni came back from the trip with a newfound fire in his belly; a revival of inspiration almost lost from months of hardships.