The Maldives Open 2015, a surfing and body boarding tournament organized by the Maldives Body Boarding Association (MBBA) held its closing ceremony in Adaaran Select Hudhuran Fushi – home to one of the greatest break points, “Lhohis”. It was also the location where the tournament took place, welcoming national and international surfers and body boarders to brave the waves that peel perfectly down the reef for hundreds of meters.
As I made my way towards the launch to depart for Adaaran, I prepared myself to brace the raging sea. Keeping my gut intact during the rough journey was indeed a tough challenge but all those hardships faded away as the picture-perfect scene of Lhohis greeted me.
The break point was a beautiful paradox; a tranquil landscape meeting the chaotic waves of the rough sea. Winds strong enough to set the sails of many brushed against my hair as I rested on the deck of Lhohis. The sound of “Bodu Beru” drowned out the faint sound of the angry waves, which seemed to dance to the tunes of the beru, angry yet seduced. To my right, participants of the tournament cheered and smiled, eagerly waiting for their prizes.
Ali Khushruwan Ahmed from the Maldives seemed ecstatic as his name was announced as the winner in the Bodyboarding Open category while Rina Kitazawa from Japan and Yoni Klein from Israel- who won the Women’s Open and Men’s Open respectively – seemed to be as energetic as Khushruwan. During the ceremony, several other prizes were also given out to the Maldivian participants by the international participants, as a token of their appreciation and love for this intense sport.
However, for me, one of the biggest highlights of the ceremony was when the local surfers who were present at the ceremony rejoiced in happiness, as the Minister of Youth & Sports revealed that the “Raalhugandu” Break Point – the most prominent surf break in the Maldives – will not suffer any damages due to the construction of the bridge in the area. The issue had been the biggest worry of Maldivian surfers for months, and they definitely seemed glad that their “home” was going to be safe.
Rays of Orange-Gold took over the horizon as the ceremony came to an end. The setting sun was a spectacular scene from the deck of Lhohis, where the waves now seemed a lot calmer than earlier. The sound of “Bodu Beru” had once again conquered the area, where most of the participants were now busy “shaking it off”. Indeed, The Maldives Open 2015 had been a huge success this year with several international surfers and body boarders participating in the event as well.