Sunday, April 12, 2009

Surf Maroc: Villa Mandala

Morocco Sunset
Sunset on the beach in front of our Villa

Morocco Sunrise
Sunrise from the beach during a morning run

Surf Maroc Villa
Ocean view from my room in Villa Mandala

The Berber Tent on the Villa Roof, stuffed with cushions and couches, perfect for watching sunsets or reading away a post-surfing afternoon

Surfing is gentle and furious. It is coasting softly in front of a wave, ripping down the front of one gripping with every nerve to stay on, and being tossed by another into the ocean like a stray corn kernel into a vat of bubbling chili.

On the first day I wound up sore, sunburned, and proud to have survived the surf. I dodged fellow campers and their boards, was informed by my instructor that I would have to find my inner beast if I was going to catch one of the big green waves (and I couldn't seem to locate mine), had a shark scare with a grayish rock beneath me, and wore sunscreen from Marrakech that should have been labeled "I love to peel, please burn me sun." All in all, I think day one can be best described by the fact that I still had sand in my ears three days later.

Day two dawned just as brightly as day one, but we switched beaches and I switched sunscreens. Our new beach was an endless swath of perfect rolling waves; there was plenty of room for every novice surfer to have her own. My new instructor, Myosef, gave me instructions clearer than my former quest for the inner beast, and I soon found myself tweaking my stance instead of making friends with the ocean floor. When I did get thrown from a wave, it was usually because I had ridden it all the way to shallow sand - though I did experience one interesting backwards somersault Brett would have loved to see. I rode dozens of waves, leaping off and running my board back out as quickly as I could after each one. Finally I understood the lure of the ocean to surfers everywhere. Each break was an invitation to coast along its wet wildness, skimming forward, right, or left, rising and falling with its power, sharing it for a while.


judy baker said...

Betsy, Is the sand out of your hair yet? Your description of your surfing lessons made me laugh. Thanks for sharing your memorable experience. Judy

Anonymous said...

I liked this one so much, Betsy.
I've returned to it a couple times, already. Love from mom