Millerslocal's own Stealth bomber.....
Local Spot: Millers
Weapons: 6'2, 6'4 and a 6'7 (Dean Geraghty). New Spider 6'2 arriving soon.
Graft: Xerox sales
Favourite surfer: Kelly, Dane and Jordy, and all time is Occy
Favourite spot: Bruce's
Local Crew: Jason Erlank (Ed - check our Brothers of Other Mothers feature), Eddie Du Mont and Ashley Howarth (when he's on it)
Achievements: EP Boys & Juniors teams, SA Students team
Take us back to when it all started?
I started body boarding at Millers when I was 9 and then started surfing at 11.
What was your first stick?
It was an old Wedge 5’8 that had been ridden over by a car and had landed up in 3 pieces. The nose and tail had been stuck back on.
Who were your crew back in the day?
Brian Berry and Jason van Greunen started surfing/body boarding Millers with me in about ’83.Then later there were guys like Jason and Aidan Erlank, Brennan Van Heerden, Gordon Hamilton and the late Donovan Rabie who used to charge, and would have probably been one of the best big wave surfers if he was around today.
What sort of kak did you used to get up to?
The one Billabong in High School everyone was looking for accommodation in J-bay and apparently there was a friend of a friend whose grandmother had a place in J-bay and apparently she loved caring for surfers. It ended up that the friend of a friend couldn’t make it to J-bay so everyone just pulled onto the grandmother’s lawn late at night assuming she was asleep and we would introduce ourselves the next morning.
The lawn was covered in tents with wetsuits hanging everywhere looking like a mini Woodstock. We wake up to two Patensie farmers shouting “in drie minute is julle weg!” Everyone was running down the lawn dragging tents and boards. To this day no – one knows where the grandmother’s house was.
Did you ever used to bunk school to surf?
The one day 4 of us bunked school and went through to J –Bay for the day. After our surf we ended up watching surf movies at the Billabong shop. Two of my mother’s friends happened to walk past and saw us kicking back and watching surf movies at 11 in the morning in J-bay on a school day and bust us!
Any grom abuse back in the day – given or received?
My first SA Champs was in Cape Town which turned out to be a week long road trip before the contest at age 13.I ended up sleeping on the front seat of a car for a week and the initiation was running around Sea Point in our jocks covered in syrup and ice cream and then having to wash ourselves off in 11 degree water.
You still rip – did you used to surf compo’s back in the day/where you sponsored?
I did the whole contest/sponsorship thing from about the late ‘80s to mid ‘90s.After that I just enjoyed free surfing more.
How’d you rate the surf now vs then?
Everyone always says it was better in the old days, but there was a day in April this year that was the best I’ve ever seen it. Breaking from Chomp rock all the way through to the pier and just running through the bathing area.
Tell us a funny story/s from back in the day.
Intervarsity Contests were always usually quit hectic. The one year we were all driving back from the party in J-Bay with Craig Potgieter at the wheel. Everyone was snoring in the car, I wake up to find Potts asleep snoring at the wheel, we had gone off the road and we were going about 5 kms an hour, too slow to cause any damage and there weren’t any trees big enough to stop us!
This happened another 3 times before we got home! I think that was the same year Andrew Scott slept in my suitcase for a week. He passed out in there the first night and never quite left.
Any scary moments surfing?
During student days I was cruising around the corner with Jorg Brand in his beetle when he tried to scare me by swerving off the road. The back wheels started sliding and next thing we rolled 3 times, all the time I’m saying to Jorg calmly “ Why are we rolling bru ? “
Next thing I open my eyes and we’re upside down skidding on the roof with sparks like in the movies. The car flips over and stops. Jorg’s Ray – Ban string is hanging off the one side of his head, the car is covered in blood and Jorg’s bone is sticking out his arm. The whole car is crushed and I’m trapped in the back too scared to look down to see if my legs are still there.
Jorg turns around, still in shock and starts shouting where “Where’s my file? Where’s my file?” (we had just come back from lectures and he was looking for his file!) He hops out the car and walks about 500m down the road still shouting looking for his file in the bush.
I’m stuck in the car unable to get out waiting for the thing to explode. Luckily about 10 minutes later Nolan McSkimming and his mates came around the corner to help pry me out the car. That was probably the closest I’ve been to the end.
You’re another true Millers Local – living right over the road. How come you’re so scarce in the water?
Everyone says that they hardly see me in the water, but I probably surf Seals more often than P.E. these days. Just to avoid the crowds I try to either surf as early as I can or as late as I can as the crowd thins out.
We’ve got a little baby, which can get quite hectic at times, but it’s still the best thing ever and worth every moment. I get a lot of support and help from my wife so it doesn’t really impact on my surfing time, I’m pretty lucky.
Strange surname – Degoumois – you French?
My grandfather was actually Swiss French, and there’s a town on the French/Swiss border called Goumois and apparently De means the family from.
I really dig the site and you’ve done an awesome job of running it.
P.S. Eddie du Mont really does wear Old Spice! (Ed – see the Back in the Day page under The Parking Lot tab. The section on vintage surf ad’s will make sense of this comment!)
Interestingly Jorg was interviewed for the Locals Feature a while ago - and completely failed to mention his lack of driving skills nearly killed JP. Bust!
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