Or the time I went to Teahupo’o to be a reporter at the Billabong Pro of the World Surf League.
Tahiti is a smile.
The weather, the incredible lagoons, the rolling hills. Islands with nothing around them but sea as far eye as the eye can see, yet so full of life on land.
Tahiti is a smile.
We wake up at 5 am, we start to get ready and then suddenly, at six, almost without any warning, the sun rises; there is no dawn, the sun simply appears.
Immediately after is an explosion of colors, the green is bright, the turquoise is vibrant, the blue of the Pacific is deep, and then there is the lagoon.
My job is to watch and then report what I see. In the backpack I’ve got my camera, my notebooks, my swimsuit and paraffin. I arrive at the marina early, at 6.15 am a boat takes us to the lineup. The lagoon in the morning is quiet, motionless, the noise of the engines is lost in the vastness of the sea, it is absorbed by the valleys that jut out into the green, humid, virgin inland. I put my musing on hold and find myself on the journalists’ boat, next to the most beautiful wave in the world, there I carve out a place for myself, I sit down, my feet hang outboard, over the reef animated with life. Every now and then a manta swims by, in the meantime in front of me Her Majesty, Mother Nature, sings her song: I hear the flute that precedes the blast, the breath that ends in the rumble that has kept me awake all night long, all these past nights.
The day passes and the memory is filled with photos, sequences, colors, stories. The tube wraps the surfers all around, the sun makes its journey across the sky and once it’s behind us, it paints rainbows on the splashes that rise from the Sea, this giant. A whale passes by, curious and majestic, to understand the reason for the agitation and happiness of these little floating creatures. A man dives to talk to her.
The sun goes down again, the light becomes yellow, warm, I have to go back and start working on my articles and upload the videos. I hop on a jet ski, we crisscross the waves at full throttle, the wind in my face, the air filters through the teeth of my wide-open mouth. While my mouth smiles, my eyes take in the beauty. Suddenly one, two, five, twelve dolphins show up, they jump, play and greet us. A tear comes down along the smile.
The rest is a dream. One step in front of the other, I jog towards the horizon, the sun sets when I stop panting, as if I puffed it away.
It’s night in Tahiti and even at night, Tahiti is a smile.