5.45am and the “tribe” is there – 5 paddlers on surfskis, one on a sea kayak, and one on a longboard. This is Manly Australia, home of the oldest surf lifesaving club in the world, and the local surf spot for Team Fat Paddler. As usual, we have a mix of seasoned ski surfers and raw beginners. People who are comfortable in the froth, other some who are terrified. That’s ok though, because when you’re with friends, you can work through the fear.
The day was bleak – grey, windy, and a little cold. The swell was small but direct from the North East… creating a difficult shorebreak but some fun waves on the rocky point at the Bower. We had beginners getting smashed in the shorebreak on the way out (and some of the regulars as well), we had most of us smashed in the surfzone as we played, and then a few more smashed in the shorebreak as we returned.
It was all brilliant of course – playing in the water, laughing with each other as we each get knocked about in the froth, and then the friendships lent on as we struggled at times on the ocean. It’s this level of friendship and fun that makes a crew so worthwhile. Cheers, FP
P.s. As always, a big thanks to Stellar Surfskis for the great toys we get to play with. We love ’em!