Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Deon is a good friend of ours who lives just across the street from Supertubes. He's a good man and it shows -- lovely wife, happy-go-lucky dog who can also guard the house when he needs to, nice home with garden, steady work as a land surveyor, nice car, great friends, and a budding quiver. He also is one of J Bay's best tube riders. He sent me these shots in two installments -- the water photos are from Cape Town's AvG, who swam at Impossibles for hours on the biggest days; Pete Frieden took the beach shots a month later.
We are always our own harshest critics when it comes to judging photos of ourselves surfing. Here is what Deon has to say about the Frieden photos:
"Here are some shots that Frieden got of me on the Green Mamba out for a Sunday drive. Not the greatest shots, but anyway... More bottom than turn - a little embarrASSed to send them - hope Moni doesn't think any less of me.
The board looks really small? What is of more concern is my decidedly Elko hand jive that I have not only in these shots but also in the cuttie shot that AVG got of me. Anyway - could be worse - could be doing the "Sideshow Bob" thing....
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Of the various boards we brought, my all-time favorite -- and the board that seemed to work the best -- was my 5'9" Pavel Speed Dialer. High lines, bottom turns, speed runs, tubes, and the odd cutback or carve, this board did it all. Thanks, Rich, for more magical moments birthed from your planer.
What kind of woman shows up at a world class surf spot with 2 bonzers, paddles out, and proceeds to surf with grace on her backhand? Well, Moni of course! She turned heads and earned respect out at Supers with her positive attitude, her bright smile, her warm-hearted laugh, and her willingness to push herself over the ledge. Countless locals and travelers alike were impressed by her overall act in the water, coming up to me and others saying, "Geez, she surfs good, aye?!" 99 percent of the time, she was the only female in the water; she became friends with all of the local heavies, earning her respect by charging hard and being beautiful, all at the same time. We love you Moni. (Photos courtesy of Sashimi Steve).
Sunday, August 5, 2007
The day after the contest, the surf was head high to 8' faces and perfect. The surf continued to pump as three mega-low pressure systems positioned themselves perfectly off of the South African coast. The result -- mind blowing rides, long paddles back up the point, long tubes, offshore winds, and in the end, noodle-arms and worn out adrenal glands.
After the contest, J Bay slipped back into its usual rhythm -- beautiful sunrises and sunsets and cozy dinners around the fireplace. Local surfers were able to re-stake their claim in the lineup, and the rest of us were rewarded with instant karma for our patience -- 12 days of non-stop waves.
Every year, the WCT lands at Jeffrey's Bay, bringing with it 45 of the world's best competitive surfers, a veritable boat-load of photographers and other media slaves, judges, coaches, fans, paparazi, wanna-be surf-pro rats, soccer dads, and other assorted kak (shit). Any sane surf traveler would avoid this circus, but Moni and I decided that we'd sit back and enjoy the show.
Highlights were Kelly Slater playing music at Pepper Street restaurant, Kelly free surfing, and watching a few others take Supers apart.
Side note: your average pro surfer lacks wave etiquette and behaves like a spoiled brat both in and out of the water. Of course, the best-of-the-best are well mannered; our favorites to surf with were Kelly Slater and Taylor Knox, both gentelmen in and out of the water. As for the others? Never mind.
Still, when the contest was over, we celebrated with locals and pros alike. Deon tracked down his childhood hero, Shaun "the Prawn" Tompson and had "Snips" take a photo. We laughed and sang and high-fived and carried on, and in the back of everyone's minds was the age-old local mantra -- thank you for coming, now go home! Ha ha!