Despite running one of the most venerable brands in our industry, since I met him 13 some odd years ago, Sasson Basha of Aaron Basha remains one of the most laid back, fun-loving people I know. I’m always psyched to see him around the halls of Couture, or at the various trade events we both inevitably find ourselves at throughout the year because he has such a warm, sunny energy. So I guess it shouldn’t have come as any surprise when I learned that Sasson (or Sass as everyone calls him) is an avid surfer! Since summer is (sadly) coming to a close, I thought it would be fun to sit down with Sass and ask him a few questions about this quintessential summer activity.
Couture: When did you first discover surfing?
Sasson Basha: My father [Aaron Basha] surprised me with a spectacular looking board on my 15th birthday.
C: Was surfing a passion for you immediately?
S.B.: I was hooked immediately, I started surfing every single day!
C: Was it difficult to get the hang of it or did you have a natural knack for it?
S.B.: I took a few good spills and then managed to keep my balance…practice makes perfect!
C: What’s appealing to you about surfing?
S.B.: Showing off to the gorgeous girls on the beach of course….just kidding! Surfing is a lifestyle that is very cool. It’s very hard exercise that gets your core working and it’s a very individual sport since everyone paces themselves in their own manner. Being surrounded by water and birds and having the greatest views of land and sea is always a new experience.
C: Where do you usually surf?
S.B.: My favorite spot to surf is Ditch Plains in Montauk. It has the best and most consistent break on the east coast.
C: Have you ever traveled anywhere in order to surf?
S.B.: My travels are mostly centered around surfing locations around the world. Magical spots like Hawaii, the Maldives Islands, Bali, Mexico, Costa Rica, Australia and many others.
C: How often do you surf?
S.B.: As often as I can, usually on weekends in the summer and fall.
C: To my knowledge, there’s a lot of waiting involved in surfing–sitting on your board, waiting for the perfect wave–what do you think about during that wait time?
S.B.: I always think about how fortunate I am to be in the water, rain or shine. To experience every wave that has just traveled from the other side of the world and enjoy the few seconds of sheer ecstasy as you become one with nature and the elements. When I’m surfing, I’m always thinking happy thoughts.
C: Have you had any scary experiences surfing? Shark sightings? Waves that were too big??
S.B.: You have to experience some scary moments to move forward athletically, like being pulled out to sea by strong rip currents or getting buried by a large wave and having to struggle to get back up. It’s important to observe the ocean and understand the workings before one enters. Experiencing close encounters with sea turtles in the deep in Hawaii was magical as well as sharing waves with playful dolphins in Bali. Being in the water draped by an incredible rainbow and surfing during sunsets are moments that are so incredible and special it’s hard to articulate their beauty.
C: So what does “Hang Ten” mean and can you actually do it?
S.B.: Hang Ten means getting in front of the board and having all 10 toes hanging off the front tip of the board…and yes I am still trying to perfect this ultimate maneuver. I do dream about it a lot…Àloah!