The surfing trips I went on overseas was mainly to surf the waves I had read and heard about. One of my early trips was to Hawaii. Why? I wanted to see and experience the North Shore for myself and see if all I had heard about it was true. It was and more. I went with a good friend. We got severely ripped off at a place near Sunset called "Brec's on the Beach". There were someone else's pajamas and pubic hair in the bed when we moved into our room. The toilet from the floor above leaked down into our bathroom. My friend got some disinfectant and scrubbed the place clean. The other people staying there went out of their way to be unfriendly. The buzz of surfing at Sunset is one that I will never forget. It was a few weeks before the triple crown and most of the professional surfers from all over the world hadn't arrived as yet. I was doing alright out at Sunset and was getting my share of waves. One day in particular the swell was coming up fast, as it does there. I'm sitting outside with this local bloke when we see this dark set coming from the West. He goes "Aw Oh!" We paddled towards it fast. I have fear in my eyes and try and stay with him. After a paddle that seemed like the width of a football ground we started up the face of the beast . We were going to make it over. Thank god. Then halfway up the face he swings round and goes it. I can't believe my eyes! Last thing on my mind. He makes the wave and goes in. I went in to but not in the same way as he did. We wached the Sunset beach competition while there. Ken Bradshaw gave a talk on water safety to about ten of us. I shook hands with him afterwards and he asked where I was from in Australia. Um you have some big waves there he remarks when I told him. Lisa Anderson smiled and said hello. She was even better looking in the flesh than in the surf magazines. One afternoon after the days competing everyone paddled out for a surf. I was couldn't believe my eyes. All my surfing hero's were there. Ian Cairns and Buttons Kapuwana greeted each other right next to me. Hello Ian. Gidday Butt. Another thing happened while we were there. It was again based around fear but this time it was man made. My friend and I were due to fly out that night and were interested to have a look up a small mountain that would give views over the whole North Shore. It was a beautiful and amazing scene as we made our way to the top. We were enjoying it greatly and took some video footage as we went. At the top where you could go no further was a private residence. Unfortunately we didn't see a "Trespassers Prosecuted" sign at the front of the driveway. We came to a house with a large yard that looked a bit like a car wreckers. There were a couple of barking dogs chained up near the house. I was just getting ready to turn around and head back down when we spotted this big white fellow walking over to the car. Being friendly Australians (sometimes too friendly!) I thought I would wait for him and turned off the car. I was sorry to have annoyed him but thought he might have something interesting to say. As he got to the hire car I thought something's not right here!. With blue jeans he had what looked like a flannelette shirt on. His sleeves were rolled up over his large biceps. I wound down the window getting ready to apologise for our presence and for bothering him when I started to think it might of been to late. He a piece of wire wrapped around each hand held taunt and perfect to choke you with. Are we in a movie I remember thinking at the time. No this is for real! If he wasn't on drugs, he should have been! Anyway he wanted me to get out of the car. He started raving "Get out and have a go you young punks" What and have you kill me I thought. I thought about starting the car and flooring it out of there. Would I be fast enough? Also I was stupidly worried he would kick the car and damage it and would cost a lot of American dollars. We had to take it back shortly.He eventually let us go on our way. It was heavy. It taught me a few things. Never forget where you are. Trust your instincts and importantly don't trust everybody and everything.
Mahalo Hawaii "Hello and Goodby"