The Gift

* The Gift is authored by guest writer ~ Jarrod Kaylor.

The best gift I have ever given ~ I also received a gift ~ from giving it. Recently, last December, I was fortunate enough to change someone’s life and they changed mine, as well. I went on a surfing trip to Nicaragua and my life was touched by a kid there, about the same age as me.

This kids name is Ramone. He is a Nicaraguan local that surfed. He absolutely KILLED it. He was so good at surfing and he was surfing on a terrible board, but it didn’t hold him back. I was surfing with him one day, while we were there, and we kind of had a language barrier, but we could still converse.

Anyways, the day before I was leaving Nicaragua we were hanging out at the surf house. I got to thinking how lucky I am to have all of these boards and how ungrateful I truly was.

God talked to me on this day and told me to give this kid my board. It was new and when I handed it to him he was speechless.facebook_-858321963-1

I started to tear up and so did he. He was so happy, he gave me a hug and wouldn’t stop saying gracias. That night I cried like a baby, because it hit me so hard. It was truly the best gift I’ve ever received; and the best gift I’ve ever given.

I was touched and always will be.

*I’ve always heard it’s better to give than to receive. I agree one hundred percent with Jarrod. There is a gift in the giving.

He was obedient to his inner voice and in that there is always a reward.

It’s  Monday morning and in a few hours I will be at work, with the kids at surf camp. Jarrod is one of the instructors.

IMG_7138oIMG_7150IMG_8621Jarrod is a blessing in my life, as Ramone was in his. I hope that he will continue to write about his experiences, and continue to share them with us at Secondhand Surfer.


Dear Journal

Dear Journal,

I have been working; photographing the cutest surfers ever.

IMG_8157 IMG_8145IMG_8205I told you.

I just completed the third week of surf camp. I have the simple job of creating photo packages for the parents, who purchased, The Super~ Secondhand Surfer~ Photo Package. I have a quota of pics, that I promised. And, of course, I want them to be good.

There is an easier way to do this, and I am working on that.

As far as suiting up and showing up, I might as well be working for Surf Magazine; the energy that I put into this.

It’s very exciting, to watch the kids learn about the ocean, surfing and just having fun in general.

Unfortunately, we had two days with a heat index over 105 degrees.

Luckily for me, I own an O’Neil, broad brimmed, straw hat, with a lining. It’s like wearing an umbrella, on my

I sometimes get in the water with an Olympus TG-2.   I have to switch hats for that. When in the water I rely on my black Local, Pipeline ball cap.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe pictures I’m getting are fun.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’m having a problem with that camera. I have to ship it back to Amazon, for an exchange.

Such is the life of a surf photographer.

Journal, I just wanted to report in.

It’s all good.

A Sprinkle of Tears

Happy Father’s Day

I’m not quite sure why everything has hit me as hard, as it has today. I don’t really miss my father. I do think of him, but it always more of a curiosity. A wonder about who he was and what he thought.

We all come to be who we are through our fathers.

 ~ that’s what THEY say.

That being said, I will always miss my mother.

My life unravels when my ball of twine looses its momentum and begins to roll backward. Everything comes undone. It knots and kinks but it won’t stop spinning. It’s just a big mess.

I know this is spawned by all of the abortion comments on facebook and everywhere else I go. They always make me think of Justin. My son, that I did not abort.

I was a young unwed mother in 1972, when it was not a common thing. I chose to have my son. I was seventeen.

How I came to be an unwed mother was more than sex. It was a life of pain. It was confusion and wanting someone to love me. It was a million thoughts and plans and dreams. Maya.

Justin died at six weeks old. I cried.

Three years later I had my daughter. I was married to her father. I will never forget how I was treated differently by people. Especially, my hospital stay. The nurses in the hospital were nice to me; they smiled and were all chipper and happy. That was not the case when Justin had been born.

I cried for twenty years.

Happy Father’s Day.

P.S. Meet Preston

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALike a post script to a letter, I must add more about Preston. He’s the first surfer in my last entry, Artist Update.

Preston came through the door of the Pipeline Surf Shop, last Monday, saying hello and introducing himself to everyone.

Here he is after five days of surf, enjoying the Friday, end of camp, Luau.

There is no one like Preston.

He’s the Man!

P.S. What a great week.

Artist Update

Pablo Picasso‘s most famous quote is ~ Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is Preston. He’s from Tennessee.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOwenOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAdamOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Group

Secondhand Surfer is the photographer for the Pipeline Slammin Summer Surf Camp.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANick


Photography + Surf Camp = Problem Solved


Man vs. Nature

I have been hesitant to write this post.

However, my thoughts concerning this issue has been alight, in my head, long enough.

There has been no anger involved, no brickbats, hostility or antagonism. It’s been a process of thinking, and reflection. I’ve experienced a twinge of sadness, that I have learned to soothe, knowing it will all make me money, in the long run. I rationalize like that.

That’s part of how I have come to deal with progress. The encroachment of man on nature. It’s inevitable.

However, the part of this scenario that continually gets my goat, is how people feign concern for the environment, through useless laws. The ceaseless posturing of politicians, to save the turtles.

Mother nature will save the turtles.

Because one day, she will have had enough. Continue reading Man vs. Nature


IMG_5743Yesterday, I met Sam. I was out with my camera looking for surfers to photograph. We had about a 15 mph wind, blowing out of the east. That is not ideal for waves here, but bad conditions don’t stop local surfers. It’s called wind chop, and the dedicated, will venture out and catch wave after wave. It’s all about the stoke. That’s one of the reasons Florida surfers are such epic wave riders.  The conditions go from flat, to windy, to thick fast slabs, that dump over a foot of sand. There’s not a lot of in between. A Florida surfer need not be transplanted to be a great athlete, but often, if moved from their circumstances, to the GOOD waves of the Pacific, well, the name Kelly Slater says it all.

Sam lives on my old block.

IMG_5744I thought that I would live there forever.

But people kept moving to the island and the lifestyle change was too much for me. I could no longer fish in front of my house. It seemed like there was a new sign and a new law, everyday. Those condos were built behind me and my view of the dunes and trees, twisted by years of hurricanes were gone forever. It shocked me.

I ran to Costa Rica.


Sam’s out catching waves, unencumbered by the past.IMG_5705IMG_5708IMG_5718All of this looks normal to him.

IMG_5719As I sat in the sun with my camera and watched him paddle, catching wave after wave, I felt very content.

Meeting him has helped to shift, that last bit of perception, enabling me to let go.

IMG_5745Yesterday, I saw through his eyes.

Sam’s Corner.