“The vast majority of things we are afraid of have not happened, or will never happen. But when you least expect it, they can come…” So begins the reflection from Kepa Acero after a headfirst wipeout at Mundaka in early January left him unconscious, briefly unable to move his limbs, and on the verge of drowning, if not for his friends who pulled him to shore. The medical diagnosis: a broken neck, but miraculously, no damage to his spinal cord. Months of careful rehab later, Kepa is back to surfing the sand-bottomed rivermouth wave that could have easily taken his life, a journey graciously told by one of our sport’s most emotionally articulate ambassadors.