ManiStyle – An Alternative to Winter

It’s Winter. Winter is months of cold punctuated with rain and snow. I hate waiting through Winter for Spring but it’s hard to speed up the seasons. Or is it? […]

It’s Winter. Winter is months of cold punctuated with rain and snow. I hate waiting through Winter for Spring but it’s hard to speed up the seasons.

This is a composite picture of me from 2008 (left) and 2010 (right) showing my evolution as a surfer girl

Or is it?

Here in Second Life, Summer is but a teleport away. And for me, Summer means surfing. Deep blue water, shimmering sands, swaying palm trees… it’s all here on the surfing sims of Second Life.

I arrived in SL over ten years ago and I looked about for something to focus on. I had always sort of wanted to surf but never had the opportunity in real life, so I decided early on to become a surfer girl. I hung out at Chi (one of the earliest and still great surfing sims), bought a surf board, got some board shorts and a rashie to wear over my bikini, and set out to learn to surf.

Surfing in SL is a challenge and a skill. I was never terribly good at it but it was fun. I did find a talent for sitting at comfy beach bars with a rum punch. I recall many lovely sunsets and relaxing times around a beach campfire with friends.

Surfing competitions happen all year around and are sponsored by the Second Life Surfing Association (SLSA). The SLSA is a governing authority for surfing and surfing-related events throughout Second Life. The SLSA organizes competitions; promotes surfing and surf-related sports; and provides guidance and advice to its members on matters such as competition organization, judging and sport instruction. SLSA is in its 11th year in Second Life.

I asked several SLSA participants and board members about why they love surfing.

An original surf sim – Chi

Petra Xaris, a board member said, “I love surfing because I find it fun and it relaxes me. Maybe it’s the sound of the waves while just focusing on the surfing. My worries slip out of my mind and it’s a great way to de-stress. In my first year, I got bit by the competing bug which I found curious because normally I’m not a very competitive person, never was in real life. I kind of shied away from competing at first. I found out though that it can be a lot of fun. You get to meet new people, share in a fun experience together and be part of one of the best communities in SL. I like to see how much I can improve from comp to comp and from season to season. So it’s sort of a personal thing and I’m not so concerned with actually winning, for me it’s move about improving while doing something I enjoy. That’s probably a good thing, in my case, because it took me 5 years to win my first Pro competition!”

Cierra Theriac, another board member and one of the founders of SLSA, said, “I love surfing in general… RL and SL. I surf in SL not only because it is fun, and relaxing, and challenging all at the same time, but it allows me to do something that I am unable to do in RL because I do not live near an ocean.”

Solace Dreams – Home of the SLSA

Finally, from a SLSA member, Aquadoc said, “Well, I like SL surfing because it has everything that I would like to have surfing in real life. It has perfect breaking waves, perfect weather, waves are super easy to paddle out to and catch, very few wipe outs and the ones that happen are easy to recover from, water is not cold, no sharks or dangerous animals, no need for sunscreen and a strong surfing community.”

So, I’m off to the beach with my board and I’ll leave y’all with some links to surfer paradise.

Some Surf Sims

El Diablo – Home to monster waves

Web Sites

Articles

 

Deepy in the surf around 2014

 

Written and photographs by Deepthinker Oh

What is ManiStyle?
ManiStyle is a monthly column that explores an idea, a style, a trend or a realm in SL and gives you some links to go explore and draw your own conclusions. MANIERA SL expresses an outlook on life that is part Vanity Fair and part Rolling Stone. In ManiStyle, we introduce you to our take on life and ask that you share your views and reactions.