Being on the North Shore for a month meant that I got to make some good friends. I surfed and skated with Makai most days and his Dad took me to cool secret spots. Sunny hung out with his sisters every day. They skated Banzai skate park every afternoon, it's about a 3 minute walk from our house. All the kids go in the arvo when it’s not so hot. The girls dominated the island drop in along with John John’s mum who rips with no helmet or pads.
I also had a bike and would cruise around on it. After skating or a late surf we would all ride down to Sharks Cove to the food trucks for dinner and watch random old surf movies about Pat O’Connell who runs Hurley. They have the best hot dog trucks.
I did the Hurley Surf Club with Joel Centeio and a bunch of groms at Off the Wall. It was sick fun until one of the groms got cut up a bit. But he was looked after and he was fine. Joel rips and he took me surfing at Haleiwa a few times. I am going to surf it more next time. I also watched my mate Eli Hanneman come second at the Pipe pro junior. That was very cool.
I buried myself in the sand one morning while watching a huge 20 Foot + messy swell hitting the North Shore. A life guard on a quad bike came and told me it was too dangerous. Instead of getting annoyed he told me to jump on the back of the quad bike to do his rounds with him.
His name is Johnny Love and he has been a life guard for 25 years. After that most days he would come along pick me up and we would power up and down the beach doing a surf check or he would just stop and watch me surf for a bit then wave. His Dad, José Love, was one of the most famous life guards from the North shore. He was best mates with Eddie Aikau and José died free diving for black coral in 300m of water when Johnny was young.
I did all my school work on a bench in the garden under a palm tree. Sunny did too. Sometimes we got distracted but we got it done sitting in board shorts with wet hair mostly. I made a bird feeder out of a coconut that had been chewed open by coconut rats for my woodwork project. Coconut rats destroy heaps of palm trees. Who would have thought rats in paradise!
I love the North Shore and the place we stayed. Hanging out with Arjuna and Mel Mel in their beach pad was awesome. It was hard to leave Hawaii. After a month it felt like home. I can’t wait to go back and hope like hell that Arjuna doesn’t rip the old beach house down any time soon.
We are heading to Tahiti next. We have been away 2 months. That’s my longest time ever but I’ m not really missing home yet. I have a photo of Manly and all my Manly Village school friends next to my bed.