Before you know it hours have passed, the embers are low, stars twinkle and you feel you’ve lived a lifetime of surfing adventure.
If that sounds like a good evening to you, order your copy of Water Music and stoke the fire.
What is a journeyman surfer?
The dictionary defines a journeyman as a ‘worker or sports player who is reliable but not outstanding’.
The book begins with a tribute to ‘journeymen everywhere who do things because they love to do them’.
Rearwin doesn’t claim to be an outstanding surfer, he surfs because he loves to do it. He calls himself a journeyman, but he’s a journeyman with over 70 years surfing experience and priceless wisdom. That in my opinion makes him outstanding.
Who is David Rearwin?
David Rearwin is a SoCal surfer. In 1951 at the age of ten, he caught his first wave and fell in love with the ocean. Since then Rearwin has transitioned from balsa to foam, swim trunks to wetsuits, relentless paddling to leg-leash luxury.
Why read the Adventures Of A Journeyman Surfer?
Because you won’t find seventy years worth of surf wisdom from such a likeable fellow anywhere else.
Water Music: Adventures of a journeyman surfer is a genuine, humble and entertaining collection of personal surf stories spanning seven decades. Many of which are so extraordinary only David Rearwin could tell them.
Choose to read this unique book and you’ll be rewarded with:
• Wetsuit & surf craft anecdotes
No historical account of surfing is complete without the awe inspiring tales of riding big waves. Rearwin’s were in cold water on a gigantic heavy board, no leash, no wetsuit and no reward. Except the joy of riding waves, at a time when most people considered the activity lunacy.
Ever wondered what the first wetsuits were like? Marvel at the unfortunate results of glue-your-own wetsuits and a near-death experience with a beaver tail!
Rearwin has ridden every type of surfcraft from selfmade redwood paipo to SUPS for senior citizens. A special mention goes to the surf mats with a lethal rope for hanging on to.
• Death defying adventures
Flash flooding in Mexico during a hurricane can be a life-threatening experience. Especially if you choose to paddle down a river on your surfboard. With no less than four near fatal moments, it’s a brilliant but bonkers adventure.
Box jellyfish stings are extremely painful and potentially deadly. Rearwin had a brush with one in Hawaii. Instead of seeking medical attention, he decided to surf it out for a while. The sting didn’t kill him, but the hallucinations and near misses with vehicles on the bike ride home nearly did.
Heavy wipeouts and hold downs can also prove deadly, and this journeyman surfer has had his fair share. To paraphrase Rearwin: these are way past the common washing machine comparisons. They’re more like an energetic scrubbing, twisting and beating on rocks, as done by those without a washing machine!
• Surf Wisdom
This octogenarian surfer treats us to oodles of surf wisdom, from how to deal with drop-ins to enjoying the world of water more. As Rearwin puts it, surfing is about more than the waves:
There’s nature, there’s the sea, there are people you enjoy and care about and love.
The sea yields unexpected surprises. One of the ‘most blindingly beautiful experiences’ Rearwin ever had whilst surfing, occurred while bleeding out into his own leg! As he says:
You never know how or when magic will strike, and that’s what keeps you in the game. All you need is faith that there will be a next time.
In his typically humble way, this journeyman isn’t trying to impress, embellish or imply any personal talent for adventure. As he says:
Mostly, it’s just showing up.
• Hope and optimism
Rearwin was forced to take a twenty two year break from surfing as his body was broken from all the falls, fractures and wear inflicted by an adventurous lifestyle. During this period he awoke everyday with the feeling something was missing.
Having returned to Santa Barbara, whilst watching a winter swell roll in, he felt like a ‘starving man watching a banquet’. He had to give it another go, so at the age of 62 got back on a board and paddled out.
After overcoming excruciating pain, gaining help from many friends and some serious dedication to personal training, Rearwin was able to fill the void and surf again.
Optimism is being seventy-five, having serious equilibrium issues, and ordering a new surfboard.
Why is he still infatuated with surfing in his eighties?
To pursue anything with passion affirms life, overrides pain and infirmity, supersedes age.
Physically unable to leap to a standing position, Rearwin mostly SUPs these days. Whilst he’s not sure if he’ll ever ride a wave on a surfboard again, he says:
If my wave… ever shows up for me again, I’ll be ready.
To be honest I was sceptical when I first encountered Adventures of a journeyman surfer. I thought ‘here we go another surfer with a few wild tales to tell’. Don’t get me wrong I love a surf story as much as anyone, but does it need to be 300 pages long?
In David Rearwin’s case, yes. He could write a book 600 pages long and still keep you wanting more. Let’s not forget, he started surfing seventy years ago and is still surfing in his eighties!
I’m always in awe of surfers who never give in to age or expectations. David Rearwin gives us all hope at a time when many of us desperately need it.
If you’d like a little hope, surf wisdom and thrilling rides, buy Water Music: Adventures of a Journeyman Surfer on Amazon.