The Dawny | Surfing’s ultimate let-down.

By Jay Vilarrubi-Smith

“Why are all of these people awake?!”

‘The dawny’ – getting up at the crack of dawn to go for a surf.

The logic is sound – the forecast looks good, the winds will be light, and you can beat the crowds. Yet why does the ‘dawny’ almost always end in disappointment?

Sure, there are those one or two sessions that stick in your mind, where the elements aligned and you had a great surf. But these idyllic memories ultimately serve to simply encourage us into making future mistakes.

So lets break the ‘dawny’ down into its different elements to see where the problem lies…

The Alarm 

The quickest way to making anything feel like a chore is to set an alarm for it. Maybe I’m just grumpy but as soon as that alarm goes off I’m likely to want to cancel whatever it is that’s planned.

Hell, they could arrange for a group of supermodels to hand out free Apple Mac’s, but if I have to set an alarm for it – I’m out.

However fun the idea of getting up early for a surf is the night before, the dreaded alarm will have you questioning why you even surf in the first place.

The Crowds

“Let’s get in before the crowd does!” Your foolish friend will persuade you. Yet having woken at 5am and smashed down a banana you discover that 20 other people have had the same cracking idea as you.

Is there anything quite as depressing as fighting for waves at 6.30 in the morning?

Giving people the evil eye and wondering why they have decided to come for a surf so early. Don’t they have a life?

The Body

I’m not the most flexible guy at the best of times so it’s certainly no help to go for a surf straight after I’ve dragged myself out of bed.

To go from a lovely warm dream about doughnuts to paddling out in the cold sea is enough to daze anyone. Ambling around – it’s probably 9am by the time I’ve figured out where I am anyway!

The Waves

Oh the waves, the very reason you’ve put yourself in this predicament. The forecast looked so good that you simply had to get in early.

Yet now you’ve gone through all you have to be in the surf, the waves need to be like bloody Mundaka to make it worthwhile.

I could have caught a limp 2ft left at 10am, tomorrow, the whole blooming summer, why couldn’t I have stayed in bed?!

The Rest of the Day 

If you’ve got the day off, you’re okay. You can probably just get back to bed and start the day from scratch.

However, more than likely you’ve got to rush back for an 8 hour shift at work. Salt encrusted and becoming increasingly grumpy as the day wears on, you’ll be shouting at Tina from accounting by the afternoon.

And if you’re unlucky enough to have to deal with customers, well they’re just going to have to let themselves into the changing rooms as tiredness really sets in.

Final Thoughts

Yet even as I write this I know that a 4ft swell and an early low-tide will have me setting my alarm for a ‘dawny’. After all, this could be the one time that it really is worth it…