Each morning he puts on his swim trunks and muscle tee, slides his feet smoothly into his flip flops and grabs his surfboard as he heads out the door. Step after step, he is on his way to catch some waves, but first, he must catch a New York City’s Subway train to get to his oasis in Far Rockaway, Queens.
Elden, a sophomore diplomacy and international relations and economics major, said as a swimmer in high school, he is no stranger to the water and the way it calms him. As a skier and snowboarder, he said he is no stranger to balance. With just a few years of surfing, he said he has found peace in the water sport.
“Surfing is the world’s best meditation. If people can’t meditate, they can’t relax,” he said. Elden added that he has found a certain kind of peace in just watching the waves go by.
Elden goes surfing almost three times a week at 4:30 a.m. in Far Rockaway beach, which means that he has to carry his surfboard on the subway.
As he sits on the subway and reads, he said he gets stares and looks from many different people.
“People hate the surfboard on the subway,” he said. The ride to Far Rockaway is more than an hour so he said he has plenty of time to get ready for the waves. “People who surf are some of the most successful people,” Elden said.
He added that he is very passionate about surfing, having fun and relaxing and that his dream place to surf is Fiji.
“Fiji is absurdly beautiful and the waves get up to 12 feet high. The waves here only get up to 8 or 9 feet,” Elden said.
According to Statistic Brain website, of the world’s 23 million surfers, about 1.7 million are American, but he has yet to find students at Seton Hall who are as passionate in the sport as he is.
Elden said that he has trouble finding people who would go surfing with him from the university.
Erika Szumel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.