The world’s finest watermen gathered in a semi-circle on the white sand beach of Waimea Bay, their big boards laid out before them. Behind them, crowds six-deep enclosed the group of 50-plus athletes. The opening ceremony of what is commonly known as “The Eddie” has happened every winter on the North Shore of Oahu since 1984. In that time, however, the event, which has a three-month waiting period, has only run on seven occasions. The Bay calls the day.