Week 2 saw plenty more waves arrive. The solid swells that hit PE and Jbay just before Christmas took just over a week to make their trek across the Indian Ocean and hit Indo. Yebo yes.
Been really lucky with the weather this time of year as it is the monsoon season right now, but it’s been calm and sunny. Bonus.
Got a few lefts in this week, which always find a bit challenging. I don’t think I’ve ridden a left since I used to surf Fence back in the day, when you could still park in the harbour and hop over the breakwall onto the dunes (and then climb back up after a surf with your fingers crossed that the skelms hadn’t smashed your window and diefed your CD’s outta the car).
Have serious kook-status when it comes to lefts, and generally avoid them like the plague. However, there are some super friendly one’s out here so am trying to overcome my aversion to backside.
One of the wave magnets in the area is a reeling left called Misho’s, or Churches. No guessing what the take-off spot is marked by! Just line up the correct palm tree with the church spire and you’re good to go.
There’s a take-off spot on the outside, followed by a 100m high-speed run before it hits the inside bowl and bends round the reef for another 100-200m. Given my complete inability to pump backside I lurk on the inside bowl and go from there. I reckon if you were a goofy footer this would be one of your fave waves for sure.
It’s also home to the persistent curios sellers you’ll ever meet! No sooner have you anchored up than the ou’s on canoes are out there trying to interest you in shells or hats or wooden handicrafts. They don’t hassle at all, just politely ask you every 5 minutes if you’d like to buy something….in the hope that maybe in the 5 minutes that have passed since they last asked you, you may have changed your mind!
We always end up buying a few things from them as a way of saying thanks for letting us surf your front yard. However, we normally hold off until the last week of our trip, cos Indo logic differs from Western logic…..in that, OK, we’ve bought something now, we’re done, is interpreted as: “Great, they’ve bought something, now we can sell them even more stuff!!”
I reckon these ou’s would make the most epic tele-sales dudes ever, they just don’t take no for an answer, just keep smiling and asking you if you’d like something, no matter how many times you politely decline. Tele-marketing companies should come over here and recruit ‘em for sure!
Most islands in the chain have lil villages on, and the only way to get from A to B is by boat, usually canoes or small panga boats. Amazing to be miles out to sea making a crossing between islands and go past a dude on his tiny dug-out canoe with a paddle, just cruising along in the middle of nowhere.
Gunwale clearance doesn’t seem to be a big concern over here, most boats only have what looks like about 10 cm of freeboard above the waterline. There’s an extensive system of waterways between many of the islands which are like huge canals – they don’t get any wave action whatsoever and look more like big rivers.
The calm waters mean they’re popular “highways” for local transport, but given how close above the water the sides of the boats are it means the resort boat has to come to almost a dead stop and putter past them really slowing to avoid swamping them with boat wake.
That lurchy lil right goes by the name of Ranga's. Have got a love/hate relationship with the place. It has the most mechanical barrel, but it scares the crap outta me as is super ledgy, fast and shallow. You have to take off deep, make the drop and pull in straight away, else it's a visit to the rock garden.
Guys get the most amazing waves there - I get to see all of em close up cos I'm always sitting out on the shoulder, too chicken to go deep to the proper take-off possie. Arg, hate being a wussy!
I just scuttle in and try get the teeny one's, which also isn't the safest approach cos have about 30cm of water under me there. Thankful for my Billabong Surf Capsule wettie leggings cos feel a bit safer reef bouncing in those!
They confused the hell outta everyone cos the ou's were trying to work out why I was surfing in my jeans! Took a bit of convincing to explain they were actually 1mm wettie leggings!
Walked out the bungalow late one arvo to see this rather interesting sight….a massive barge carrying logs that didn’t look particularly seaworthy! Back half totally submerged. Overloaded? Nah! Wouldn’t have liked to see what would happen to it in gnarly weather!
Middle of the week and back down to my fave spot for some perfect right peelers. Had a few days of good size, but as luck would have it, the shot of my biggest wave was all blurry. So used to that happening now, just laugh it off. The camera-gods have a good sense of humour!
Just so lucky to have the surf guides taking pics, cos normally I'd have to sit in the boat and shoot if I wanted to get some. Gotto say the guides here are top-notch, get you into good waves and take plenty of pics, and are all-round lekker ou's.
Christmas on the island is always a jol. Did an early morning get-up to go hunt down some waves, and got lucky with a few brekky barrels. Well, not me, cos am allergic to barrels, but everyone else got shacked, even hubby.
Then back by 11am cos he had to play Santa Claus for the mini-groms. The last ou to lay Santa musta been a big-thighed lad cos the inner seams of the Santa suit were split from knee to groin to knee. Which woulda provided a tad un-nerving for lil peeps to have to walk up to Santa to get there pressies and get an eyeful of gonads in the process. Day saved by a pair of red cycle pants which did the job perfectly of preserving Santa’s dignity, and not terrifying the kids!
An arvo of Christmas Olympics – a bit of golf, coconut jukskei, snooker and beerpong, followed by a huge Xmas dinner, fireworks and everyone ending up getting chucked in the pool fully clothed rounded off a good day.
And so ended Week #2. Hopefully Week #3 brings more of the same. Can never get tired of warm water waves!
And yip, this is a week overdue, but been surfing all day every day and getting home knackered so no time for blog posts!