Ever had that helpless feeling when you watch super fun waves peeling off in front of you, and no matter how much your mind still wants to surf your body says take a hike?? After a slow start the first few days of our trip, the swell picked up on the weekend.
Put in 4 sessions on Saturday, and 2 long one's on Sunday. Arm's have gone on strike, rash vest has created rashes, ribs are rubbed raw, ears are waterlogged, eyes are bloodshot, legs are burnt. Damn, don't you love surfing!?
Really fun waves, mostly shoulder high, with a few head to one and a half overhead sets thrown in to keep you on your toes. Wind hasn't been as perfect as it can be, neither has the weather. But if you can bank 6-8 hours surfing a day you're not complaining.
Parked off in a kiff lil anchorage near the break....which means you terrorise yourself even waking minute you're sitting on the boat and not out in the water as you're seeing fun waves going unridden. But when you're stuffed you're stuffed.
"Thankfully" the swell drops off over the next few days before the next pulse pulls in, so will have a chance to rest up. We'll probably up anchor and mission off to another atoll for a coupla days, try out some other spots.
Heard that the bay back home has been pretty quiet wave-wise since I left....hope the charts start smiling on you guys soon. Usually when we have a long lull like this it means mother ocean is brewing something scary which she'll unleash fairly soon! Here's holding thumbs...
Gutted! Literally! We’ve pretty accustomed to having to unpack our big fishing reels every time we go through customs, but this time was a first. The Dubai customs muppets decided the gut on the reels presented a security risk, and insisted that we would not be allowed to proceed unless they stripped both our reels off all their line.
They then laboriously took off all 600m of line as slowly as humanly possible, all whilst being treated to dagger stares by Wright Inc. Particularly since this was our deadly red stealth line that was a guaranteed fish catcher. Ah well, lucky fish. Nearly not so lucky me, I was trying to surreptitiously film the saga with my GoPro when the one customs ou spotted me. Next thing my camera gets yanked outta my hand and he’s demanding I show him the pictures and telling me I'm in big trouble! “I didn’t take any Sir!” He kept turning the camera over and over after making me switch it on, saying "Where are the pictures!?" Thankfully the GoPro doesn’t have a LCD screen, saved my bacon…and my camera!
A mad dash through the capital island on arrival to get some new line, and then we were off. Missioning down to our special spot in the hope that the swell gods would roll the dice in our favour.
One room for our boards and rods, the other for us. A good balance. Took a flyer and asked the boat owner to try find Garth an el cheapo guitar so he didn’t have to lug his one over. Turns out el cheapo guitars sound like el cheapo guitars. Or maybe even more like screeching cats who’re in the process of being snacked on by Bruno the Bulldog.
So far one fish in the boat. Been travelling a bit too fast to trawl. Caught by the R10 handline tied to the rudder strut, not the $$$$ Shimano Tiagra 50 stuck in the rod holder. Fish aren’t fussy.
Been off grid whilst we sailed down to our spot, only arriving late Thursday arvo. A quick surf (OK, make that a swim with our surfboards) to rinse the grime off and then go set anchor in a nearby lagoon for the night. The swell that klapped us over the last weekend should pull in on Friday. Fingers crossed! Mates of ours are also anchored down here – said we’d missed cooking surf on Tuesday. Bogger. But a good sign they’re here, cos that means my call on the swell prediction should be spot on.
Could get used to living here. All you have to do is surf, fish, sleep, read and get fed like a King. Gonna start investigating how to enter that $200 US Mega-million lotto…..
Back in the day there was a comic strip called Hagar the Horrible. Was bout some Viking dudes, Hagar, and his sidekick Eddie. Now Eddie was called Lucky Eddie, kinda facetiously, cos if there was an arrow flying by, a cauldron of boiling tar being thrown over the wall, or a stray spear - well, you guessed it, they hit Eddie. So he wasn't really so Lucky.
Yesterday was Big Dave's turn to be Lucky Eddie.
Things started out well. A "business trip" to JBay neatly coinciding with clean glassy 4-6ft lines. So far so good. Bails out the car at Supers. Board off the roof, ready to grab suit and get kitted up...but, ooops, locked the keys in the car. Phone the Houdini people, get the keys out the car, pay R200.
Now the southerly has come up a bit, so Supers not looking so super anymore. Board back on the roof, down the road to the Point. This time keys not locked in the car. Paddle out, hair dry. Lil bomb rolls through just as he reaches the backline. Spins round, strokes in, wave peeling off down the line ahead of him. Mind ablaze with the possibilities.
Stands up, back foot slips off the back of the board. Muscles tearing and tendons ripping in his groin as he does the splits. Dave cannot do the splits. Body ablaze as neurons fire off like they'd OD'd on Red Bull.
Can't even sit on his board now, too bloody painful. Turns the tanker to the shore and prones in. Struggles up the beach. Can barely drive, has to use his hand to push down on his right leg so it'll push the accelerator.
And you thought YOU were having a kak day!!!!
Kulula's everyone's favourite budget airline. They're the Nando's of the skies, with some great tongue-in-cheek advertising. The hiccup is that they're now paying their marketing ou's so much, they've decided to pull a serious skelm on surfers. Gone are the days where your boards could come along for the ride.
Uh-uh, sorry for you....new baggage regulations at the end of last year saw em pull a sneaky. What the PR types call a "soft launch"...i.e they introduce something they know the public are gonna be the moering with them about, so they don't actual advertise it, and try hide it away on some obscure section of their website.
So your first introduction into the new Kak Kulula Kharging policy is when you rock up at the check-in counter with your board. "Hi sir, that'll be R300 please." Whhhhaaat?! Yebo yes, you only be allowed ONE piece of baggage these days. So whatever else you got with you, including your surfboard, gets heaped with a R300 surcharge. Untidy, very untidy.
And let's just remember those drie honderd smackeroo's only get your board one-way. You still gotto bring it home. Cha-ching....they just hooked an extra R600 outta ya pocket. Daylight robbery, there's nothing more to it.
Oh, but it gets better....if you're a golf nerd, that's OK....bring along them 40kg golf clubs, no problemo, no extra cost. Why the discrimination!? My flipping board weighs a damn side less than those stupid ball-hitting sticks. The website specifically states:
What sports equipment can I take and what is the cost?
Bikes, fishing gear, surfboards etc. are not considered normal luggage, and can only be carried as part of your 1 free piece baggage allowance. Extra pieces will be charged at the airport rate of R300 per piece or save up to 33% and purchase extra bags online (at least R200 a piece) at least 2 hours prior to your departure.
Yah, well guess what Kulula Kooks, the surf community ain't so chuffed about your kak idea to charge for boards yet still letting the golf nerds through. We thought Kulula was all about Kool. Surfing is Kool, golf sure as hell ain't!
Get your priorities straight!
Wanna let em know you pissed, click the link below to give em some "feedback". If you don't bitch, you just gonna keep paying. Vote with your feet peeps. They don't support us, we don't support 'em Fairs fair.
Geoff Jones dropped us an email with a coupla shots of the old days in PE:
"As an ‘old’ PE surfer, I thought I better give you a little more info about ‘the old days’ i.e. the 60’s and 70’s.
When I started surfing in 1965, we only had one surfshop in town. That was Sandy McGilleray’s shop in the old city parking garage next to the Hong Kong restaurant. The other surfshops in Rink Street came years later. From what I can remember, all the boards were imported from Oz and the USA at the time, although both Cape Town and Durban were soon making pretty good boards. Then Bobby Joubert started making really fast boards in EL – I still remember a 10 year old Gavin Rudolf asking me for a wave on my new board at the fence.
Taking about the Fence, I thought you may be interested in a couple of old surf shots. The first one was taken on a big day at the fence. The shot was taken around 1966 (46 years ago). Note where the break was compared to the double stacked harbor wall block versus where they are today. That section of the wall is now high and dry and the break is far more out to sea. The bounce off the wall was far more pronounced and had a lot more effect on the waves. Those were the days!!
The second shot was of me on a nice glassy day at the Pipe, again taken around about 1970 – note the old fashioned cargo boat in the background.
Sorry I don’t have some better action shots to show you. But I do have years and years of good memories. I still surf a longboard, now at 66 and intend to keep going until I can’t stand up anymore.!"
Thanks Geoff! Anyone out there with more old pics of PE surf and the beach scene from back then, please pop em to me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Was wondering how the EP team was doing at the SA Longboards at Vic, so tracked down manager Michelle Hill for an update. Here we go...
"So far so good. We had a fantastic day today with some real standouts! All of our juniors (under 18) and Boys (under 15) are through to the Semi-finals. It’s an amazing accomplishment and they have all surfed their hearts out and made us very proud...Standout's so far have been Steven Sawyer, Galad Smith, Josh Macwilliams, the Van Risjwick brothers and Dane Van Greaunen. Dylan Macleod is thru to the Semi's in the open division and Masters. Jonathan Hill has also put on a sterling performance this year and joins Dylan in the qualifying final with still there safety net in place. Michael Hill and Brad Beck also got through their heats today to advance to the reprocharge semi's in the open division.
Also our superbly talented team of grand masters unfortunately lost one of their own today but Duncan and Andrew Scott and Kimbal Whitfield are all through to the Semi's after putting on a fantastic display of old versus new school surfing making them a force to be reckoned with for the title. Greg Smith surfed amazingly posting some huge scores in his heat also seeing him comfortably advance to the semi's. Craig Van Greunen also displayed some powerful back hand surfing in his division today making him a genuine favourite for the title in his age class.
Tomorrow (Friday) we kick off with the ballies with Dave Hill, Gavin Seaman and Dave Lippy all ready to do battle with the old Vic locals from the Southern Cape team. From there we will be heading straight into semi-final action with the possibility of final heats as well.
On a more serious note we were chased out the water by what looked to be a large shark this evening. The contest was called off at once and will resume again after the managers meeting tomorrow morning. It’s scary stuff. One local resident says in all his 30 years at Vic, he has never seen a shark... makes you wonder!!!
Big swell predicted for Saturday!"
Good luck to all our surfers - get your grubby mitts on that trophy ou's, and mind the finned friends.