Goodbye, Bug.

Today marks the end of an era, the closure of a 12 year relationship that has been wholly positive, not to mention incredibly happy from beginning to end.  Today is the day that I say goodbye to the Bug. So to mark this occasion, I felt that I would pay tribute to the first car that got in to my heart with a few words.

I have never been emotionally attached to any of the previous cars that I have owned, but a 2002 VW Beetle has done just that, so much so, that I feel incredibly sad to be saying farewell. To be honest I don't know how this happened, this was a car that I took over from my wife partly because my previous car went horribly wrong, but if I am honest I think the main reason was to spare my wife from having to part with her when she herself got a new car. The arrangement was always going to be a temporary one, a year at the most, a stop gap car until I chose something else, this was over four years ago. I became smitten, and while I probably should have sold her before n…

Beautiful Boards!

Surfboards make me happy.  Of course I love riding them and watching good surfing is something that I never tire of, and probably never will. But just looking at surfboards gives me so much stoke, this has been true to say for thirty years now, although in recent years I find that the boards I prefer are those that are based on the classic shapes of the 60's and 70's.  While I love longboards, traditional designs and styles at least, I especially admire the boards that derive from the shapes that emerged when it all went short.  The boards of this era just lend themselves so well towards style and grace, they have enough volume to be able to glide effortlessly, carving out long and drawn out turns, all connected with a fluidity that is so lacking in modern surfing.

These are the boards that I like, and this is the style of surfing that gives me the most stoke. For while I enjoy riding all types of surfboard, as described in the previous post, I like everything that there is to …

Magic Board.

A short time ago I took ownership of what I can only describe as being a magic board. And it cost me a mere hundred and fifty pounds too.

Realising that my Donald Takayama was getting a bit too much use as my daily board, I made the decision to find something new. These days I tend to shy away from cutting edge modern design, preferring fish and long boards. But I figured what the heck, let's find out how these modern craft go.  

Being on a bit of a tight budget I set myself the challenge of finding a decent used example. After trawling the various sources of second hand boards, it didn't take too long to realise that anything that was any good was getting snapped up immediately, or else it was dramatically over priced. I began to loose my enthusiasm and looked at some of the fleet of old boards that I have with different eyes. One of those was going to have to do.

Then, just as I was going to give up the chase I found a board that was pretty much what I was looking for. I contac…

Collecting Wood.

I first entered the world of skateboard collecting about a year and a half ago, when I purchased my first re issue board, a Powell Peralta Cab mini street.I made this decision independently and while it felt a little extravagant this was a board that I have always coveted, but never owned.At this time I had every intention of setting it up to use, as such it was fully justifiable.  My decision was made, I ordered the deck and that's where it all began.
While the Cab was set up, to this day it has never been used.And I am fine with this, more than fine in fact, for since this first re issue related purchase I have obtained many more, while my collection is fairly slow when compared to other peoples, it is something that I extremely proud of nonetheless.They are simply beautiful things to own and I get a great deal of enjoyment from just looking at them.I have no desire to make any money from them, I am in no rush to own each and every board that I once owned, or want to own.They are…

Far From The Sodding Crowd.

While surfing the other day, in a line up that was so ridiculously crowded, that it resembled an uncontrolled zoo where the animals were just left to their own devices.  A scene that was a free for all, where the usual etiquette and rules that everyone should at least have a inkling of are being totally ignored or simply not being applied.  Anyway, it occurred to me (after I had been dropped in on multiple times) that there has to be a different way.  I want to surf without the crowds of kooks, the aggro, unfriendly people, and the down right clueless.  I want a different version of surfing to be my reality, no crowds, and attitude, but near solitude where smiles are plentiful, the vibe friendly, and space.  I think that latter is the thing that I crave the most, for lately it would seem that personal space is something that is no longer observed in the line up, any more than it is on the land.   For it is so busy, dodging flotsam and jetsam in the impact zone, being drooped in on, an…

Like finger nails on a blackboard.

While it is true to say that the commodification of surfing has been taking place for quite some time, it would appear that the suits within the corridors of power at many of the companies who have a vested interest in surfing have seriosuley upped their game.

Okay, let's start with the shark 'attack' during the comp at Jeffrey's Bay, okay, it wasn't orchestrated, but the whole incident was given far more coverage than was actually needed.  Surfing, and indeed Mick Fanning, received unprecedented amount of media coverage (someone correctly pointed out that Fanning will be remembered more for this, than for anything he has ever done in surfing), at all levels throughout the world. Suddenly surfing was in the spot light, not because of anything to do with surfing, but the fact that a shark was perceived to attack one of the competitors, but was fought off, thus thwarting the shark and saving his ass.  Now don't get me wrong, I don't wish for a second that Fann…

Getting Heavy.

After a run of fun but slightly mediocre surfs, last weekend yielded something that I had been craving for quite some time.  Fast, racy, heavy shore break. Praa Sands style!

I love surfing here in these conditions, it was the beach where I grew up, as such I have put enough time in over the years so that I have got it more or less wired.  Because it was the place where I predominantly surfed during my formative years, it no doubt shaped my style and approach towards surfing.  I have surfed it a lot throughout my surfing life, taking a fair few knocks in the sand along the way, broken some lovely boards too, but I do love these waves. And I am truly in my element when the tide gets high and things get a bit heavy!

This past Saturday as soon as I saw what was happening, that shift from the outside banks to the ones just below the high tide line, I knew that I was in for a treat.  And I realised that because I am no stranger to these conditions, instinct kicked in and I was picking off the…