“…Surfing is like golf: you’re always battling, and it keeps knocking you down. There are a lot of wipeouts. But, when you stay with it and catch that wave, you really taste it. It’s magic.”

– Dennis Quaid

San Narciso, Zambales

San Narciso, Zambales
Beach Bumming on Day 1

The first time I tried surfing in La Union, I didn’t learn how to turtle roll or duck dive, which made me want to go back and do it again. I knew it’s what I want to do on my birthday.

Ma, I told you not to look at the screen.


I got scared when I saw the waves. I didn’t even touch a surfboard that day.

The lifeguard climbed down to get something, so I thought he needed a sub.

The next day, I had enough courage to try surfing again. It was months after my first lesson, so I was nervous. My sister, a first timer, and I got bunched up with several girls. We went back to basics – practicing how to pop up on the board on the sand – and I realized I still have it.

Surf lesson in Zambales
Lessons start with basics and safety tips

Once on the water, I was able to pop up easily although balancing was a bit of a challenge. We started with the instructor, Santi, pushing my board when there’s a good wave. Next, he asked me to try paddling – either this is the next lesson or he’s tired. :p

After a few more waves, he stopped telling me when to stand up. He told me to pop up once I feel the wave push my board, and so I did.

The 1-hour lesson was almost over when it started raining and the waves became even harsher. A part of me was scared and another, thrilled.

Zambales Quiksilver Surf Instructors
Quiksilver Surf School’s Coach Jhong and Santi

I don’t always celebrate my birthday because “what’s to celebrate?” I usually say. Now, I realized so much has happened in 26 years.  

Life isn’t easy. It’s not supposed to be easy. There are waves and like a true surfer we just have to wait for the right time to pop up. Like a real surfer we will still fall; when we do, we just have to paddle and try again. When we’re tired, we can always go back to the shore and rest. There will always be a good wave to catch later or tomorrow.

This is the real #wokeuplikethis

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