|Leah Dawson leans in. Photo past times @Hatsumisurf.|
By Leah Dawson
"Bali Bagus", nosotros say, exclaiming that Bali is therefore real good. Since the ‘70s, Bali has been a sought subsequently tourist destination due to its tropical isle setting, in addition to it's good intact culture. You grinning at a Balinese, in addition to they grinning fifty-fifty bigger correct dorsum at you.
Yet those who receive got traveled hither inward the past, fifty-fifty 5 years ago, may shed a tear upon returning to this solid reason that has go simply about other fallen victim to overpopulation in addition to a massive attack of unusual money. This ane time pristine isle has go a concrete jungle ridden with plastic. Through the trash (that seems to receive got nowhere to go) in that location is notwithstanding an incredible civilization held intact past times the Balinese people. They receive got pride inward tradition. On the busy streets, shops subsequently shops offering incredible fine art plant of all kinds, forest furniture, blown glass, in addition to tapestries galore. There's a budding manufacture because the exterior earth can't seem to larn plenty of the civilization in addition to their creations.
This is my tertiary fourth dimension hither inward Bali, returning hither for the surf, every bit normal for most of my worldly explorations. For 50 years, Bali has been an explored surf destination known for its powerful, perfect waves. I got an invite to compete inward lastly year's initiatory ladies jam at the Deus 9ft in addition to Single event, held inward Canggu at the terminate of each May.
|From left, Karina Rozunko, Kassia Meador, Leah Dawson at the Deus Bali event. Photo by @mirza_n_s|
After having the fourth dimension of my life lastly yr at the event, I was bang-up to return, specially when Kassia Meador, inward accuse of the invite list, invited 2 of my favorite rise stars, Seeababes Lola Mignot in addition to Karina Rozunko. After sharing waves with these 2 inward Commonwealth of Australia before this year, I was stoked to listen they would live with the half dozen girls to present off what nosotros honey inward front end of all the boys at the Single Fin event.
I arrived to Bali subsequently a 2 calendar week gamble through Japan, shaking hands in addition to throwing every bit many cheesy peace signs in addition to huge grins every bit I could. For the kickoff iv days of my Bali return, I was curled upward inward bed with a gnarly fever in addition to internal infection. Praying I'd experience similar myself past times the fourth dimension the effect began, I finally woke upward twenty-four threescore minutes catamenia of with my commons energy, normal temperature, in addition to ane excited outlook for the twenty-four threescore minutes catamenia in addition to how it may play itself.
The effect twenty-four threescore minutes catamenia was pumping, at to the lowest degree for large heavy logs. It's no like shooting fish in a barrel describe wrangling a 20+lb board inward overhead (at times bumpy) surf, yet us girls pumped each other upward every bit nosotros watched the men's semi finals. Our pre-heat was maybe simply every bit entertaining.
|Lola Mignot drops in, with Leah Dawson on the inside. Photo past times Annie B at Surfing Tribe, Seea's kickoff dealer inward New Zealand!|
We all suited upward together (an threescore minutes before the heat), shared our wax, showed each other stretch moves, that turned into trip the calorie-free fantastic toe moves, laughed in addition to giggled similar a clan of immature schoolhouse girls. One wouldn't know that nosotros were all competing against each other, because nosotros all were in that location to celebrate together in addition to entertain the beach, non to compete.
When nosotros hitting the water, the whole beach was watching, a crowd filled with women too. We all swapped waves. I wanted the biggest ones, therefore I sat means exterior in addition to waited patiently every bit I watched the girls do rounds in addition to rounds of dancing on the fast, tricky medium waves.
It took every ounce of my physicality in addition to mental forcefulness to remain aboard on my kickoff fix wave. Riding a 9'5 log out in that location felt similar a bull gone wild, therefore I heard my moms never changing advice, "slow down". I did my best to matrix the time, to motion smoothly with the powerful fast wave.
Midway through the rut I realized my fin was a fleck loose, possibly why the kickoff few waves felt tricky. Kassia in addition to I shared a wave, but my belatedly drib sent me squirming in addition to swimming subsequently my board. I finally reached it 50 yards upward into the fresh rain, muddy river mouth, my wax from that scream for out was pointless, my board felt similar a sideslip n’ slide.
|Karina Rozunko inward Bali. Photo by @mirza_n_s|
|Lola Mignot wearing the Tofino inward Geo Gold. Photo past times @mirza_n_s.|
When our threescore minutes of ability was finished, nosotros came inward for supermodel documentary hour, every bit numerous photographers in addition to fans all wanted their photos of all the dancing beauties. We hugged in addition to laughed, in addition to everyone on the beach could listen in addition to experience our stoke.
I in addition to therefore geared upward inward my lucky Zuma adapt ane time to a greater extent than for the effect I'd been waiting for, the Under 9ft in addition to Single, inward which I had made the semis against the boys lastly year, in addition to it was my goal to brand the lastly this year. I also made a goal to form my ain board to surf with, for I couldn't imagine a to a greater extent than consummate experience.
My whole life I grew upward playing coed sports, yet this effect has been the solely fourth dimension I've competed inward surfing with men, in addition to it lit a burn downward inward my pants therefore to speak, to brand a statement, that a daughter tin surf differently, yet inward her ain way, simply every bit practiced every bit a guy. So for the lastly year, I've been working on my unmarried fin shortboard skills, in addition to finally shaped my kickoff board; a 6'7 weird affair with ane fin :)
|Leah Dawson wearing the Zuma inward Black Stripe, with her kickoff self-shaped board. Photo past times @Hatsumisurf.|
The residual of the rut was a dream, every bit I watched my favorite unmarried fin surfers to their justice, making sweetness honey to the Canggu waves. I did my best to live every bit smoothen every bit a lady could live on my remaining waves. I came to the beach to honor simply about happy faces, all stoked that I had held my ain inward the champaign of men. I was humbled in addition to grateful for the chance to trip the calorie-free fantastic toe amidst them. I ended upward getting tertiary place, to Harrison Roach in addition to Tyler Warren, 2 surfers who I ever expect to for character inspiration. My goal achieved, I couldn't receive got been happier, every bit I satisfied my soul with the boys, knowing that the board I made truly worked a bit.
|Leah Dawson riding "Smoothie" inward Bali, her kickoff self-shaped board. Photo by @mirza_n_s.|
The entire experience was magical in addition to triumphant, every bit I was simply grateful to live feeling improve than the 20% I had been feeling upward to the twenty-four threescore minutes catamenia before the event.
I felt blessed to live with a grouping of women surfers who absolutely honey riding waves because it makes their soul experience good. If anything, that's what nosotros inspired to the crowd, in addition to what volition present every bit the media in addition to videos go on to free nearly the event. There's an irresistible camaraderie betwixt woman mortal surfers. We are community rather than competitors. In surfing every bit inward life. Together is better.