The best day Longboarding!
This is a story of the day, or rather, the best night I’ve had to date.
This is in the very, very beginning of my career as a longboarder. Before you know, all the gnarly high speed runs and the standup slides, even before I did my first coleman slide to slow down! Actually, if I do remember correctly, this is even before I learned to sufficiently footbrake.
Anyways, so this was about one and a half months into my longboarding career, I haven’t fully embraced efficient, full pushing yet, and I was still doubting myself on my capabilities. However, one day, my friend messaged me on Facebook, insisting that I go with him to a mellow downhill run to the local burger joint. I was hungry and always willing to challenge myself, I accepted. After this, I tuned up my bearings, cleaned my trucks, and even though I had some pretty bad bushings back then, I cleaned those too. And so I went and met them at the station. It wasn’t just him; it was a whole group of people! There were downhillers, there were freeriders, some groms with no experience on cruisers, and I believe there was also a rollerblader there. (No idea how he got in!) And so we went. The downhillers went in the front, absolutely ravaging the slope, miles ahead of us, and then the freerides went, and then we went. Surprisingly enough, I stayed with the freeriders, it must have been the fresh bearings! This was an almost 15 minute long run. It wasn’t fast, and it wasn’t threatening at all, in fact I had enough composure at that speed to have conversations with people. Tuck and move up, get a chat with this guy, maybe fall back a bit and talk to this girl. It was an eye-opening experience, really.
Like I said, this run was about 15 minutes long. So 15 minutes later, we all landed at an A&W (A Canadian burger chain, delicious), and we all ordered our own meals. We all put the tables together into this huge mile-long thing and sat around it, getting rowdy at 10:30 at night at this burger chain. It’s dark outside, but nobody seems to be tired at all! We’re talking about gear, girls, boys, dreams, university, it just went on and on and on in this seemingly neverending energy-filled conversation between 10 people all brought together by longboarding. Everyone was incredibly friendly, and I’m just sitting there thinking, “Wow, I need more of this.”.
At that point, my head just went from aiming for a casual, cruising kind of longboarding career into pursuing what all these people had; something to improve on daily and show off at meetups. I started giving to the community, donating gear, donating money to hold competitions. And that’s how I am here now. That fateful night 2 months after I picked up my first board at the shop, when my friend invited me, an unknowing grom, to a skaters’ hangout. You can do it too. Pick up your first board, have fun.
-Ryan L. Longboarder.