Norway Meets Canaries, Surf/Cultual Exchange 2012
Early January saw the second ever cultural exchange between Rysoy college (from Norway) and IES Cairasco de Figueroa from Las Palmas to experience surf for the first time in their lives, combine it with an international "Palas" class (beach tennis with wooden bats) and a food exchange... then just for fun they dropped in the centre of the island and had to find their way down... all in the name of discovering Gran Canaria, its waves, its food and its people...
The story starts several months back when back in snowy Norway, the kids at Rysoy started their surf training in the swiming pool and on indo-boards (like a small see-saw that tests and improves your balance) in readyness for their trip.
The story of the Canarian kids goes back to last year when IES Cairasco de Figueroa, spearheaded by Alejandro Gil Sanchez, embarked on a trail-blazing educational course which forms part of the curriculum of the kids in college looking at Surfing as a form to get to know the Canary Islands and encompassing it into their curriculum.
Momentum has built and this year it is even bigger with other colleges following their curriculum and introducing surfing along with crossover subjects in maths, physics, chemistry, art, business and tourism to the students.
Meanwhile, when Rysoy college arrived in Gran Canaria, they were straight into their first classes with Surf Canaries Surf School and by their 3rd day, the training had paid off and most were riding really well.
The day of the cultural exchange came. The location was La Cicer on las canteras beach where the Canarians shared waves with the Norwegian team during a sunny morning.
Following the class, it was time for the food exchange served on a surfboard. On the Norwegian menu was brown cheese on norwegian crackers (yes brown cheese! it really tasted better than it looked and intrigued the locals) and on the Canarian menu was chorizo de Teror, churros and chocolate.
Next up was the palas class where the ice was really broken and more than one facebook exchanged!
Finally, the group headed onto the bus, right up to the Pico de las Nieves, the centre of the island. It was a cool crisp day at the top of the mountain and the group hiked down a beautiful ravine right to the cave restaurants of Guayadeque to end a perfect day.
Surfing, Canarian food, beach tennis, a hike across the islands and dinner in a cave; Rysoy college really got a taste of what´s to offer in Gran Canaria all in one day which they wont forget for a while, and neither will the local kids!