Welcome to Provo, California

Well, gentlemen, let me give you a bit of an update on Provo and on my life. Law school is going well. It’s definitely tough, but it’s good at the same time. (The toughest part is not the coursework–it’s the amount of hiding the ball that professors in higher education do.) Anyway, I’ve opted to spend my summer abroad this year–half of the time I’ll be in Uganda working for an organization that works with the government to promote property rights of AIDS orphans/widows. The other half I’ll be researching at Oxford for a professor there, which should be really cool.

As part of my trip to Africa this summer, I have joined a group of students who raise money for students doing externships. Our task is to go out to Utah Valley businesses and receive gifts/donations that we can auction off to the law school/alumni community and raise money. I thought I’d share an experience that I had while gathering some of these donations.

This Saturday, I was meeting up with the other law student who I work with (we have been tasked with the “date” route). We had gone to a lot of places in Provo already, but we hadn’t yet gone to the Riverwoods. While wandering around this mall (which has changed quite a bit), I stumbled upon this sign:

Now, in this moment, my curiosity was piqued. I had a flashback of Howard dancing around the kitchen of the house, “The mountain is high, the valley is low” in a midriff shirt that said “ProCal” on it. I laughed, and I thought: we gotta check this place out.

So, we rounded a corner, and there it was, looming before me like the Argonaths in front of Frodo on the Anduin. Huge, this building is–I might even say gargantuan. The Provo Beach Resort seemed to beckon to us, and all of a sudden, I thought: I need some board shorts!

When we got inside, we found all kinds of fun–a bowling alley, a simulated golf-course, a shark tank, etc. But the best part was this:

It’s called a “Flowrider”, and yes, it is an indoor surfing machine. That’s right. Surfing, right here in Provo, California. It was awesome. But I think the best part was as we were on our way out, and I noticed a sign that seemed to indicate the sale of merchandise. The name of the store was:

That’s right, guys–this was a clever play on two cultural phenomenons existent here in ProCal–missionaries and surfing. I walked in and was blown away–hundreds of board shorts, Roxy sweatshirts, and O’Neill t-shirts. “In God’s Hands” was playing on the plasma tv in the corner. Amazing. I was pretty certain I had reached Nirvana.

I guess that I thought the surfing craze was a fad that died out after we graduated from high school. But maybe it’s not, maybe it’s not. I just know that the mission of Called to Surf is to bring the coast to all peoples, everywhere. Pretty tubular.

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