Surfing at Fiftysomething

Rob tries surfing

For 10 years, I’ve looked admiringly at the surfers cresting the Atlantic waves at Mawgan Porth on our regular Cornish holidays. Watching the groups led by KingSurf surf school heading down the beach, I though I’d love to do that, but feared that at my age I’d only embarrass myself by trying.

Last week, I put my doubts aside and gave it a go. 13 year old Owen and I had two lessons with KingSurf and loved it. We did better on the first lesson, as there were more waves and we had more practice. On the second lesson, we had the benefit of a particularly good instructor, seen in the yellow top below. He noticed that I was instinctively putting my wrong leg forward – something I hadn’t even noticed. Had we had better surf, I think I’d have made more progress. (During the first lesson, I stood up several times – something I never thought I’d manage.)

I noticed that the young surfers were very good – many were able to ride modest waves right to the shore. Owen did well too. He has really got into watersports this summer, especially sailing at the excellent Bury Lake Young Mariners (BLYM) at Rickmansworth aquadrome. We are now looking into an expedition to The Wave at Bristol – it offers up to 1,000 waves an hour, which is rather more than we got last week! Even I should see some progress, ready for our next trip to Cornwall in 2023.

We stayed once again at The Park at Mawgan Porth, a holiday village just five minutes’ walk from the beach. We find The Park an amazingly relaxing place to stay, with walks in the woods, a nice restaurant and indoor pool. The staff are so friendly and helpful – especially Alice in the restaurant, who happily accomplished our quirky menu requests! We didn’t use the car once for the week we were in Mawgan Porth. We have already booked to return in August 2023.

We took the dog with us on holiday, and after an uncertain start he loved the beach, although he was not convinced the sea was so friendly!

The beach life!

There’s something special seeing people with a surf board under their arm, heading for the beach at any time of the day. Having taken my first surfing lessons, I felt more justified in wearing my old t-shirts with references to iconic Cornish surfing locations such as Fistral beach, just down the road from Mawgan Porth. Owen and I bought two Mawgan Porth hoodies from Married to the Sea, seen above in the photo. One day, I hope to have our own camper van to justify wearing that Fat Face VW Camper t-shirt!

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