I took the photo in Tofino in August 2009.
Unclip, unwrap, unzip. Twist and contort. My body unshapes itself from the protective coccoon. The squawk of rubber on wet skin upsets my ears. Steam errupts from my chest as the cool air welcomes my body. I pull the wetsuit down to my waist and take off my boots. I throw them onto my upturned longboard next to the gloves and hood. A deep breath and a slight sigh. Sorrow immediately feels me. The day is done. My effort finalized. Every set is now just a memory. I light a cigarette and sit down looking out at the waves that I had just bested. A wry smile curses my lips.
I feel like I have won.
I think ahead. There is plenty to do. The night beckons. My stomach alerts me to its thoughts. I make a quick plan and commit it to memory. Then I look back out and I reflect on my life, my loves, my when and wheres and what could have beens. Nostalgia always bests me. An untamed circuit breaker that will always makes me smile. I feel great. The Sun makes its final approach towards the horizon and magic hour is beaten by nightfall once again. Vancouver Island feels like a friend and Tofino its warm embrace. I smile again.
I have won.