Days with the San Diego Surf Basketball Team


It has been a long time since I decided to write something to record the experience that I had during the last half of month. Indeed it was by accident that I got the chance to take the work as atranslator and photographer for the San Diego Surf Basketball Team, who were invited to play basketball matches for over 20 days in several different citiesof Hunan Province. There existed a little incident that a good deed eventually turned into a bad one, which could havemade me give up the work at the very beginning but then the words “A good startdeserves a good ending” aroused me from the self-accusation and disappointment and stimulated me to act better in this job. Ultimately it turned out that thechoice that I had made was true.


People will never have the idea of whatwill happen tomorrow until that day finally comes. Just as what I have experienced this time, I would never be aware of what I would get and learn until I really got into the character as a translator and photographer andtried my best to do the things that were required to be finished. Withouthaving any practice of doing translation and photography work in basketballcourt before, truly I felt a little hesitated and afraid to take the challenge.Then I thought to myself that people learned from the challenges and risks, andwhy not give myself a chance to prove that I was capable of doing this job?


Days got busy as the work really started.And of course it was fun hanging out with the guys, taking them to the underground mall to buy bargains and going to the night bar to drink and danceat the last night of their trip in China. Also, it was very excitingevery time when they played the match with the Chinese team. I got a strangefeeling that I really hoped the Surf Team could beat the Chinese Team when Iwas around taking photos in the court. And I became very nervous when the scores were getting closer and closer. I supposed it was because I have countedmyself in the Surf Team so that the strong desire for the winning of the SurfTeam then generated. Especially on that night in Hengyang, I felt very sorry for the match andthe referee’s decisions to the coach and Marcus. But anyhow, everyone in thecourt knew the truth of it and it was really a wonderful game though the SurfTeam lost it.


Ross, Coach Washington, DJ, Chris, Billy,Berry, Anthony, Fred, Marlo, Marcus, Cody, Devin, Kiot, indeed I had very nicetime with you all and truly I hope we can meet again, no matter where it willbe. I always believe that destiny makes people meet each other and ties peopletogether.

What I have learnt from this trip are:

Some things should not be and can not be measured by money but time and spiritand experiences.
It’s important to be humble and sincere to treat people regardless of howpeople will be .
Opportunities should be taken by the people who have prepared well to takethem.
No matter how hard it is, I will always find a way out.
Transposition thinking is of great significance.


-------------------------Replys from theSurf Team-------------------------

Ross---The General Manager

Thanks Riven,

We enjoyed your company and help. Check outyour photos on our webpage: it is our new url: I gave youcredit for the pictures.

I will pass along your message to the guys.We will meet again for sure. Although Chinese philosophy and attitudes arechanging in china, you have the right handle on thinking. An optimistic personthinks of all the possibilities over the limitations. You can do and beanything you can dream of. we all have confidence that you will do well inlife. Stay in touch.


Coach Washington

Hello Riven,

I have been busy every since I Returnedfrom China.I am sitting here outside of my son Daniel school reading your letter. I amvery impressed with your letter. I am thankful that God had given me anopportunity to see Chinafor a second year. I Am grateful for the opportunity of meeting you anddeveloping a good relationship. It was no accident that we met, it was God'splan that we met. Your decision to come and take the position of being atranslator/photographer was a good decision. I really enjoyed the time youspent with us as a friend. I think that China is a wonderful place withwonderful people who should be allowed to visit other cultures. The food wasgreat and the cities were astonishing. I pray that I Will be blessed with moreopportunities to go back and visit. You are destined to do Great things inlife, do not let fear spoil or anyone, or a decision that you make stop youfrom walking into your destiny. Put God first and be will make all thingspossible. Tell Aki I said hello and I will email her soon. Love little brotherand see you soon.


Daniel Brown

Thanks for sharing your memories of the SDSurf's trip to China.We plan to be with Cody next weekend to hear his stories first hand. Good luckand I hope you get to Americasome day.


Marcus Saunders

Excellent note! We all agreed that the tripdidn't become fun until YOU came along. I can speak for everyone to say: THANKYOU FOR BEING YOU AND ALL THE MANY THINGS YOU DID FOR US ON THE TOUR. You're anamazing guy and blessed to have that many more opportunities presented to you.No doubt in my mind, we'll all meet again...SOON! Keep moving forward myfriend.. fueled by your ambition to do great things in this world.


Berry Jordan

Well put Riven. You tackled a hugechallenge and did a great job. It was a wonderful experience for all of usalso. We really appreciate your work. We have memories captured because of you.Thanks for everything.


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