Ocean Wake

“When someone dies in Encinitas, I think it’s a Hawaiian thing too, as part of the wake, we all get on surfboards and paddle out to the ocean.  We get in a circle, and have leis… and we say a prayer or if the person wasn’t spiritual, say some nice words and talk about the person.  Then they have leis or flowers of some sort and you let them float away in the ocean.  It’s the same thing as scattering ashes, without the ashes.”

The informant has been a part of the ritual before, and she learned it from her father who is a part of the surfing community in Encinitas.

This wake ritual goes along with the community that it is practiced in.  The ritual draws from the geographical location near the ocean and the surfing community in the area.  It is a way for everyone to be a part of the celebration of the deceased person’s life, and  the floating leis give a more peaceful picture around the harsh reality of death.