Pomona College Magazine
Volume 41. No. 1.
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Catch a wave at a nearby beach.

The tidal pull of the Pacific Ocean is so powerful that it can drag a college student out of bed hours before the start of classes.

During his Pomona years, Miko Lim ’02 got so hooked on surfing that he would make the 45-minute pre-dawn trek to Newport Beach several times a week, spend a couple hours catching waves and make it back in time for his 9:20 a.m. class.

Lim tried surfing for the first time as a freshman, and it didn’t go smoothly. “It was extremely awkward,” says Lim, who today is a fashion photographer in San Francisco. “You feel like you have two left feet.”

But Lim kept at it, drawn to an experience that leaves you completely engrossed in the moment. As Lim explains it, your analytical mind switches off and all your senses turn on. You smell and taste the salty sea air. You feel the deep cold of the ocean. “You can’t be thinking of anything else,” he says.

Lim spent one summer during college teaching surfing in France. So he has some advice for beginners: Learn from an experienced surfer, who should be in the water next to you—not riding his board—while he’s teaching you.

“Just be extraordinarily patient,” he says. “Understand you’re going to be drinking nasty, polluted water and freezing, and it’s going to seem like you’re not progressing at all.”
Of course, for those who prefer their ocean without risk of life and limb, the beach also offers other attractions, from cookouts to just soaking up some rays.

Read about Pomona's Ski-Beach Day tradition
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