I was on my way back from a road trip to one of my favorite places on the planet ‘Transkei’ when I received a call: “Would you be keen and available to go to the world longboarding championships?” And a month later I was on my way to China, Hainan to be part of the SWATCH GIRLS PRO world long boarding champs.
Surfing has been a passion of mine for many years. I love the ocean and everything that goes with it. I never surfed for anything else than the pure the love of it. Competition surfing was not in my plan and competing with the top surfers of the world didn’t even cross my imagination. I did however get involved with competition surfing in 2005; they were looking for women longboarders for our province team and that was the first time I had touched a longboard. I never looked back, fell in love with it, and carried on doing the annual South African champs. In 2013 I had my personal best as I made the finals in the SA Longboarding Champs. The ladies that came second and third couldn’t make it to worlds and I was next in the row. Of course I would go! Give me an adventure and a travel opportunity, doing what I love doing most, and I’m there! It felt like I received a gift straight from heaven.
I still have to find the definition of a Log… But in my world it is one massive surf board with one big fin that gets you going on any little wave the ocean produces and allow you to do the most beautiful dances on water. This weekend I saw a whole lot of loggers and dancers at Cobbles Classic Single Fin Challenge. It was the third annual event hosted by the Loggers Union at their local surf spot ‘Cobbles’.
Surfers from all corners embarked on a road trip to be part of this special event. One thing that binds us all together, the pure love of surfing as it was intended to be by the surfing legends that has gone before us. The competition rules were: Surf a Log, No leash, No hazzling, Take turns on the waves, Only good vibes. What a pleasure it was.
I have been long boarding for a long time now, but never surfed a Log. In order to be part of the Loggers Union, it was inevitable that I was going to need one. Des Sawyer who has always made my surfboards, made my a beautiful new board which was finished one day before the event. It didn’t take me too long to fall in love with it. The board feels majestic, it slides on the waves and all I need to do is go with where the wave is going and do what the wave allows me to do. The best part of the event was that we could all surf together and spend two full days on the beach, young and old. The little competitor did kick in though and I was very pleased with a second place!
Since I can remember my parents would take us to the South African South Coast for our yearly family holiday. Since I remember I had an attraction to the ocean. I would play all day in the waves with my little body board and dreamingly look at the guys surfing the big waves out there. Just imagining how amazing that must be. It remained a dream for a very long time. My family is not a surfers family and no one could introduce me to the sport. We relocated to the Netherlands when I was 14 and only once I was more independent and a student, I started to learn to surf.
Every surfer knows there is no shortcut to learn to surf and often it is a humbling process. The whitewater’s, your first face wave, bigger waves, faster waves and the million of whipe-outs… I would see good surfers out there, they make it look so exciting and easy, but I had to go through all the steps and it wasn’t easy. But the journey was thrilling and fulfilling! I had a goal and I purposed in my heart, I am going to be able to surf well! The key was to never give up and keep on paddling out. I would have never thought that this commitment would have taken me to China in 2013 where I had the privilege to represent South Africa in the Swatch Girls Pro ASP longboard World Championship in 2013 & 2014.