Page 32 - Surftime Magazine Vol.24

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POSTCARDS FROM
THE EDGE: LANZAROTE
THE DISAPPEARING ART OF
NON-SELFIE SURFING
All photos by Liquid Barrel
T
he motivation of surf travel has shifted.
Blame the modern age.
In today’s world of selfie madness and Go
Pro mugging, with most of a surfer’s day
taken up by personal social media manage-
ment, the travel experience has become
something seen and not felt. These days a
surfer has to get back to his phone to actu-
ally see where he was. Post it or it never
existed. All website surf footage these days
is just an exercise in advertising. We only
see sponsored video shorts. With the touch
of a delete button, Surf stars today are dis-
posable. Mini-careers are built on running
around with a cameraman obtaining snip-
pets and clips. Desert Island surfing has
all but disappeared and with it a certain
element of adventure that once drove the
sport. The age of discovery has been de-
leted. Replaced by the age of capers and
gags. And there is a danger in this.
The danger of bringing about the end of
wonder.
“to obtain knowledge or sight of what was
previously unknown”,
this is the definition
of the word discovery. And surfers used to
feel it all the time. And be richer for the ex-
perience. The way a wave you found in a
far off country would find its way into your
consciousness. Could become a part of
you. Unshot, unfilmed, uncaptured. Some-
thing wild in your life. A visitation. Some-
thing chasing you as you chased it. And
this is made even more so by finding these
waves alone. Sizing them up. The possibili-
ties. Your real motivation tested. Paddling
out alone. Edging closer and closer to the
beast. Pulling back on a few and then finally
catching the first one, riding it and kicking
out. Realizing it was all possible. Your ad-
venture complete.
The photos on these pages are a reminder
of this brand of wonder. Imagine the feel-
ing of exploring alone and coming across
this wild place. Raked by the Scirroco winds
Lanzarote, part of the Spanish archipelago
of Canary, sits 125 kilometers off the coast
of North Africa and about 1000 kilometers
south of the Iberian Peninsula. In other
words, way off the map. A UNESCO bio-
sphere, Lanzarote is an island of over 300
volcanic cones that gets regularly punished
by the fury of the North Atlantic. It is home to
camels, rare falcons, the spitting gallotia liz-
ard and bizarre blind crabs. It is also known
for its wild local government corruption, the
site of a Stone Roses Video and the worlds
only underwater art museum. Something
that has to be seen to be believed. All of
which you would never have cared about
unless you had actually put down your
phone and lived the place. So yes, as you
look at these powerful, unridden waves,
consider the possibilities beyond the photo-
genic. Imagine being there and sizing the
place up. Imagine just you and your board
and these waves. Unwitnessed, unfilmed.
Would you do it? Could you do it?
We cannot go back in history to a simpler
time.
But we can bring a simpler time with us into
the future.
Give it try next time.
And don’t let us know how it went.
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