Meeting a Hero(The Wrong Way)


Actual photo from the crime scene!

My last few weeks in Hawaii was bitter sweet. Our humble home in Ewa Beach had been packed out and all of my belongings (surfboard included) had been put into the storage units to be sent off to the mainland.


Bye Ewa Beach!

We said our goodbyes to friends and we were sent to live in a hotel in downtown Honolulu until the time came to jump on the plane. This was not a bad deal! So what did a young kid want to do to pass the time??

Surf of course!

So I knew of one board rental place right by Kaisers Bowl and the next morning  my father, my sister, and myself walked down and met the employee. I began to inspect my choices…beat up tanker #1. Beat up tanker #2. Beat up single fin. Just put the prefix “beat up” in front of all my choices. After many minutes of cringe worthy inspections, I found a rather wonderful beat up, over-sized twin fin. A few minutes later, I was making my way out to the bowl for some fun on my awful surf vessel.

A few days later, I once again talked my pops into paying for another rental. So he grabbed his camera and we returned to the shop of surfboard horrors. The racks had the same awful choices so I scoured the racks for the twin fin I used previously. As I walked along the one rack, I suddenly saw a board just sitting there. I stopped. It was the most beautiful board. Better than my own board! This did not make sense. I pulled it out again…Surfboard Shaping Co. Along the stringer it said, For Chris.

I walked back to the guy and asked him if all the boards were for rent and he said of course!


Yeah brah! All!

I smiled and my pops paid the guy and off I went!

The waves were not great by Town standards but this jewel just made it all the better! Dad popped off a few photos and left. I began to catch wave after wave.

What a day! The waves came and I started to look more west. I could see surfers out at Bowls. Game on!

There are a lot of spots between 3’s and Ala Moana Bowls and I surfed about anything that was breaking. I stopped at Big Rights and caught a lot of waves before settling in on Bowls. Later, I paddled all the way back to 3’s and went in. I was out for quite a while but this board made it all worth it!

When I got within sight of the rental place, I saw a small group of local guys looking around. I came up and one guy pointed at me and another guy began to jog toward me.

Oh my god! I am happy to see you kid!

The other guys came over. I looked over at the one guy and he looked very familiar. I looked at the board. Surfboard Shaping Company. Team rider…Bobby Owens. I looked at the guy in front of me. Crap…

Chris Owens. North shore charger. Brother of World Tour Surfer, Bobby Owens.

I immediately began to apologize and told him the story and how the guy told me to take any board. Chris just held his head and started to laugh.

Kid…I am so happy to see my board. It is my fault. I put my board in the racks and left for a few minutes.

I then told him that I know he is Chris Owens and I thought the whole situation was to good to be true.

Eh, tell me…How did the board go?

Your board was unreal! I was getting all the good ones!

Right on kid!

A few days later, I was back out at 3’s. Back on a junky, rental twin fin.


Leaving Hawaii is always the worst!

Then it was good-bye Hawaii and good-bye home.

Florida…Here I come. Off for new adventures.


About 1stpeaksteve

Welcome to The Side Wedge! The Side Wedge is a product of the journey through life of Steve Zima. Former professional surfer, a writer, surf coach, and hospitality manager. This is a collection of travel tips, motivation, and stories from my past. Finally, I offer surf coaching through The Side Wedge. Please feel free to contact me with questions if you want to improve your performance today! Thanks for reading!
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2 Responses to Meeting a Hero(The Wrong Way)

  1. Its great you got to surf on his board. Some things are just meant to happen.

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