He walked with a slow shuffle, board in hand, up to the water. Even the thick neoprene wet suit couldn't hide the fact that this surfer was long past his prime. I watched from my blanket on the sand curious about him. From the weathered skin and straightforward trudge forward, it was apparent he wasn't a novice and I wanted to know if the water could give him back the bounce that was now gone.
He didn't stay long in the water. I could be wrong because I got distracted by a bird lady but I never saw him stand up on the board try as he may. So I wondered. Has he just battled an illness or injury? Is time just cruel? Regardless, it was obvious he feels the call of the sea.
If the story I gave him is correct, he has felt it from his days of his youth when he ruled these waters. Back then others would stop and stare at his exuberance and command of the waves. Now those days are long gone. Even if he couldn't stand on the board today, he may be able to do it tomorrow, if even for a second so he'll be back. Because he loves the ride more than he hates being old.