The big day came just over a week ago. I was firstly spoilt by H with amazing presents that she had arranged. An Atomic Coffee Maker courtesy of her family in the UK, a Kindle from friends in Sydney and flights booked to Tasmania to do the Overland Track! We are booked in for late September, outside the official season and still quite wintery, just how I like it. For Holly to book such a trip is amazing considering her love of warm beach type holidays. I was and am stoked with these incredibly thoughtful pressies.
After getting amongst it in the morning it was time for that fabulous office tradition, cake. Our very own resident pâtissière Carmen, although not at work at the moment, had made me a delicious chocolate cake and 30 mini cheese cakes.
On Friday afternoon, we took the well worn road up to Sydney to celebrate with friends and family. We had the most delicious dinner at Jamie’s Italian in the CBD. The antipasti plate was incredible with the best prosciutto I have ever eaten. Most of us went for the fresh pasta options for our mains, I had the chilli prawn linguine. Troy, my sister’s boyfriend, took on the 650g t-bone steak for two, by himself! It was a great night and we left with full bellies and warm hearts.
The fun continued the following morning when Holly and I went to my cousins café at Bronte for breakfast with my Aunt and some of la famiglia who are always in the café getting their coffee fix. As usual the breakfast and coffee were outstanding.
From Bronte, we went north to Manly to pick up my final present, a handcrafted surfboard made by Neal Purchase Jr. Neal makes the most incredible stub quads, single fins and other planing boards. Holly, a bunch of friends and my family had organised a beautiful blue stub quad for me. Massive thanks to the fellas at The Shop Next Door for pulling all the stops to get my new board to Sydney on time, cheers! I was keen to surf my new board but I would have to wait a couple days as it had only recently been glassed.
|Neal Purchase Jr 5'8 Quad|
We spent that night partying with new friends and old in the city. It was so great to catch up with so many of my friends and see everyone having a good time. I took bugger all photos, which is a shame but here a couple.
I woke slightly hungover to a full house on Sunday. Mum and Dad had arranged for more friends to come round for breakfast. Again, it was great to catch up with everyone.
By this time I was well in need of a salt water cleansing. Unfortunately, although there was plenty of swell, a raging southerly was creating wild conditions for surfing.
However, I did have one secluded and rarely surfed left hander in mind. I grabbed my Dad’s beautiful Mark Rabbidge 8’1 and hit it. I got a couple of nice windy lefts, clearing the cobwebs.
|Secret windy lefts|
|Jumping off, I waited ages for a break in the swell|
|Windy late takoff|
We had a quiet night at home on Sunday and prepared for the drive back to the mountains. Although the weather had cleared and was an unseasonal 26 degrees, the surf was still wild and out of control on Monday morning. I was keen to use my new board but it wasn’t looking good. I had an inkling that a fickle reef at Coogee may be breaking. We checked it and there was the odd wave coming through. My board probably hadn’t fully cured but it was time to get it wet.
Although the surf was pretty crappy and I only got a few waves, the board went unreal. I can’t wait to get it back in the water.
It was finally time to hit the road back to the mountains. Thanks to everyone who eased my transition from a surfing and skiing bum of my 20’s into a minimally mature 30 something. Special thanks to Holly for making it all come together. I’m stoked to have such amazing and thoughtful friends and family and am looking forward to all the adventures that the 30’s offer, yew!