Garrett McNamara is an American professional big wave surfer known for breaking the world record for largest wave ever surfed which he achieved at Nazaré, Portugal. We interviewed him.
How did you become a professional surfer?
By chance, I was getting ready to graduate high school and had no idea what I was going to do with my life. My sponsor entered me into the Triple Crown of Surfing and I ended up winning a little money, technically making me a pro surfer.
Does your work fulfill your expectations?
I can’t imagine doing anything else with my life! It is my passion and what I live for. Only very rarely does it feel like a job.
What would you be if you weren’t a surfer?
I have no idea! :) When I was younger I wanted to be an architectural engineer.
Can you describe to us your first contact with Portugal and Nazaré in particularly?
My first contact was when Dino [Casimiro] emailed me a picture of Nazaré and then Pedro [Pisco] invited me to come and see the waves. As soon as I got there I saw the biggest waves I have ever seen!
How do you deal with fear on a daily basis?
Fear is created. It only exists if you are living in the past or worried about the future. If you are in the present moment fear does not exist.
How do you see Nazaré in terms of tourism, events, and travel incentives?
In the summer they don’t need any help with tourism the place is packed. In the winter it has the biggest waves in the world. It is the only place where anyone can stand on the cliff and be so close to such a phenomenon. They can truly feel the power and energy. Aside from that it is a picturesque cliff with an old fort and lighthouse!
As a foreign citizen working regularly in Portugal, what kind of characteristics do you appreciate in the Portuguese people?
The people in Portugal have so much love and hospitality. They take a little while to feel you out but once they know your intentions are pure they will give you the shirt off their back.
Flash questions (about Portugal)
Migas, clams and salad.
As long as its red it all good in its own special way.
When you are abroad what do you miss the most from Portugal?
Nazaré… Celeste and our friends.
Three Little Birds by Bob Marley
Favourite word or expression?
Muito bom! [Very good!]
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