Ozzie Ausband

Scorpion Bay


Baja California Sur. The tiny villages spill over the hillsides in dirty clumps. Brightly colored walls starkly shadow the poverty seen in every direction. People have less than nothing. I see a man defecating in the grass of a vacant lot. A small brown dirty-faced boy smiles and waves from a blue cloud of bus exhaust fumes. I can’t hear his call for a peso in the confines of our air-conditioned, comfortably appointed American automobile. I don’t feel too good at the moment. I think of the leftover dinner I threw into the trash last night and the thirty dollars I wasted at a skateboard shop. That could’ve gone far on this day… in this town. I wince at the naked reality of the destitution and lawlessness spread out in front of us. Every town. Every night. Crime seems to ooze through the villages like a leprous thing. Hard-eyed men watch us hungrily. We push south in a caravan.


Tony Alva and Brian Logan lead on point, as Lucia Griggi and I follow. We pass broken homes, tiny hamlets and Catholicism. Churches seem ubiquitous yet to my thinking, God has left his post. I hope he is paying attention. Dry hillsides, bristling cactus and dirt clouds were a constant reminder that we were pushing further and further from our homes. Scorpion Bay waited for us.




On arrival, Tony Alva quickly led the fray into the lineup. Perfect rights peeled open like glass zippers. He stabbed deep into a pocket and blew through for a long, four minute ride halfway down the bay. Lucia stepped in and stepped up. Style and grace. We’ve been in the water several times already today and last night was cool and quiet. I woke just before sunup. The sea hissed a few feet from the tents. The ocean was purple and malevolent. An uncaring master. I stood on the cliff above it and closed my eyes…  I felt like the last human on earth. Dawn slowly bled all over me… light and peace. Thanks to Lucia Griggi for the images. Skate…  and surf. - Ozzie