Where in the world had I gotten the image of a surfer? Well I could easily pin the mental picture on the media. Admittedly when all else fails I revert to blaming the media, like the rest of you. But to be fair, I'm also from California so it could have come from what I witnessed all those times I decided to ditch class in high school to go to Huntington Beach.
I'll be honest. My idea of a surfer was a male, white male. And prior to coming to Rio de Janeiro I had already made up my mind the things I'd blog about and surfing was not one of them. But how was I to have an authentic experience and thus give you an authentic lens into this passionate culture, if I'd already pre-determined what I'd see. As it turns out my image of a "surfer" was wrong. Surfing is an interesting part of Brazilian culture and in particular Rio de Janeiro and it is visible, very visible. Although the 2014 World Cup has captured the attention of the world right now, decades ago surfing though in intervals brought attention to Brasil.
The sights were beautiful. Surfers were toting their boards 'pranchas' around and incessantly confronting the waves. And gender was not a filter either, women were represented as well. And the little ones, the most fearless ones glided as without effort across the waves. It was not Huntington Beach. Instead it was Recreio and Arpoador.
The sand was White and the skin was Black.