DAY ONE: Ke Nui Road, North Shore, Oahu, HI. Nov 24th 07.15am
Are you ready to have the noise brought on you?
I got to Hawaii last night. Thomas from Jamur video, a Brazilian bro from Hossegor was on my flight from LA, and had a lift sorted to the North Shore. Rocked up at 11pm, stoked, hundred bucks or so better off than if I’d have grabbed a cab. I found the house and a handwritten note from my landlady that said, ‘Paul, Aloha, welcome. Let yourself in. Your room is upstairs.’ The trouble was the door was locked, so I slept in my boardbag in the garden. Probably only got around 75 mosquito bites, so overall it was a good night.
At dawn I trotted down to Sunset and saw ASP CEO Brodie Carr who was with Al Hunt. Al had longer, wetter hair than I had imagined for a statto. We walked and talked. Al Hunt reckoned that Joan Duru, now down in 17th place will need a semi or a final at the O’Neill World Cup of Sunset, which opens today, to qualify. A pretty tall order, although if anyone could do that why not Duru the Damaja, after all, French goofys have made Triple Crown finals before (Miky Haleiwa 07, Alain Riou Haleiwa yesterday, Didier Piter at Pipe in 1985…) and Joan has tree trunk legs.
Tanner G had just got out of the water. I congratulated him for the Seabass dance off, he was stoked.
Sunset had some good ones so I thought I’d type this have a plop and then pretend to get out there before they start the birds’ event.
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Sunset had some fun waves today. The most impressive thing I saw was Bethany Hamilton scratch into an 6-8ft wave at Sunset with one arm and rip it to the beach. There’s not that much impressive about getting attacked by a shark, not something you could either claim credit nor take blame for. What is madly impressive is having so much ticker that you won’t let a little set-back like having your arm bitten off at the socket by a tiger shark stop you riding chunky waves, or put out your fire. Bethany Hamilton has a purer love for the sport than you or I. I am a BH convert.
Ken Bradshaw was out. He stood upon on a wobbly one, laid back down then got bounced of out the back. Stephanie Gilmore was paddling next me, I said, “That’s you that is. That’s what you look like.” She didn’t laugh as much as I though she might. Alana Blanchard was sitting some 5 yards away, she was picking off many waves in her tiny demi-thong 2 piece. Her and Steph were discussing why they didn’t run the girls today, there were plenty of waves (it was because the webcast tech wasn’t set up).
“They should have run us,” chimed Alana. “It’s not like anybody watches us anyway, is it?”
Gilmore agreed. I was shocked at the honesty. Do the girls know? Do they think they’re not that good too?
“It’s true,” added Gilmore, frankest world champ since Bruno.
Joan Duru was out and looked angry, surely ruing not nailing it in the Canaries three weeks ago. He mauled apart one wave, ripping. Pancho and Neco Padaratz also ripped, Alain Riou had a couple of bombs too. I was riding my 85 dollar bike back from Haleiwa when I saw Charly Martin, Joan and Marco Lacomare in their tennis get ups. I should have taken a photo but forgot.