By Alex Zimmerman
I had been checking flight prices for over two months when one night the price dropped significantly enough to make an instant purchase. A few late night calls to a few friends led to a long month of anticipation for the trip to follow.
What really made this trip so great were not the waves ridden (although they were damn good) or the amazing food, but the people who shared the experiences together. In late May Nick O, Johnny “snacks” G, Brett W, Andy B, myself, and a couple standups arrived at PXM to be greeted with the first afternoon of offshores in days. We met up with a few of the other guys who had already been there for a few days consisting of Matty M, Wladimir, David S, and Jordan H, also not to forget Quinn Q who had already been there for weeks prior. However, the head count was not quite complete. Josh S, and Sean H showed up a few days into the trip adding to the Californians. Our groups joined forces over the next couple weeks leading to countless barrels, plenty of beers, enough mota to kill a horse, and 5 shits a day each due to the healthy Puerto diet.
A typical day went as follows: wake up, surf, eat, relax, eat more, relax more, possibly surf again, eat more and drink your choice of Sol, Corona, or Pacifico. Although the days blended together as time went on, each day was different from the last. Sometimes we surfed a point instead of the beach break, sometimes we ate at Mangos instead of Cafecito , and sometimes we slept in the hammocks instead of lounge chairs. But, a few things remained constant, the heat and humidity never let up, the surf never dropped below head high, and the food was never bad.
Due to the abundance of free time out of the water we developed unique ways to keep ourselves occupied. In previous trips, games were invented such as fan ball (use your imagination), in this trip we invented the game of Puerto caps. Caps is basically played by throwing beer caps across a room from a choice of three distances with each distance representing a number of drinks to distribute if the shot is made or the number of drinks to consume if the shot is missed. Needless to say this game led to plenty of fun, and made the night fly by. In addition to Caps, daytime was passed by sleeping, walking through town, playing crazy eights, Egyptian rat slap, speed, and even connect the dots. Something different about this trip to Puerto was the relationship developed with the locals. Not only do many of the locals rip harder than many would expect, they also returned the respect we gave them. Becoming friends with many of the locals led us to better waves, rides to the beach and back, and inside information on where the best place is to score a filling cheap meal. One older Puerto resident, Crispin, even took us to his house and showed us around Puerto acting as our translator and guide.
Many people think that vacations are over on your journey home. We proved that very wrong. Our trip didn’t end until we split ways in LAX late at night, after a full afternoon of boozed up plane rides and stories shared and retold until landing back in the states.
I really cannot describe how great of an experience this trip was. If all the other guys had a tenth the amount of fun I did (which I’m sure they did) they would have had an amazing time. Leaving Puerto was not easy this year, as we all faced returning to reality whether it be work, school, or whatever else everybody does at home. Although this was everyone’s first trip together I’m sure it won’t be the last.