People ask me all the time, “so a surf camp in Costa Rica? Why here and why not in Hawaii?” Shall I give them the full length explanation or should I just cut it short since I’m kind of tired today? No, I usually always go with the long winded answer since it’s a great conversation starter, warming up the soon to be surfers with a story that most would likely want to make reality.
Were should I start? We’ll we, my family and I moved down to Costa Rica in 1981 when I was only a month old. My two older brothers and sister all grew up in a house with a nanny that only spoke Spanish. Need to say we were speaking Spanish in no time! We were fortunate that my father bought a farm that we have to this day. We moved away in 86’, Wally World it from Florida with an abrupt stop in Canada almost fulfilling our goal of making it to Alaska due to a little incident where the motor home caught on fire. We then decided to move to Maui, Hawaii in 87’. We all grew up playing as many sports as we could. Making lots of friends and even gaining another brother by welcoming my best friend into the family. It was a fun childhood unlike most, we would go to school with no shoes, and I quickly found out what it was like growing up as a “haole” or white kid in the islands, but hell some hard loving is what shaped me into the person I am today!
One of the most important attributes that I learned while growing up in the islands is “respect”. Respect for everything and everyone, and being able to give and show “Aloha” to your neighbors. This was such a valuable lesson for me to learn at a young age! Doesn’t matter where you go whether you’re waiting in line at the grocery store, at a restaurant, or out in the surf its always good to give a little Aloha. Show a little surfer etiquette, greet people with a smile, say hello, don’t try and catch all the waves, however when its your turn make sure you go or else you will lose all rights to the next wave!
Time flew by and then I went ahead and grew up to fast, graduated from high school, and had to look for a college so I moved off to California for a while, then Oregon, then Las Vegas before making the journey of a lifetime driving from Vegas with my brother, father, and sister in law through central America surfing the entire way before arriving at our family farm in Costa Rica.
Stay tuned in to hear about our journey through Central America in our next write up!