by Brett Davis
"Best surf trip i have ever been on!" That's a great rap from a number of 'Old Salts' Australia plus a local CS 'Shaping Bay' group from Wollongong who attended two one week surf trips to Hawaii. What made it so good? Let the guys tell their own story...
"I appreciated the community of guys being honest and transparent about real life issues."
"It was a great surf trip because it wasn't just about surfing, we got to serve the local community."
"It was good to do the building project at the church knowing the youth program would be ongoing."
"Sick waves, sick company, sick food, sick community!"
"I loved how were got to meet local people and not just be total tourists."
The first week had four Old Salts in their 50's and 60's enjoy their bucket list maiden Hawaiian tour. The surf was a manageable 4'-8' and highlights included seeing the Volcom Pipe Pro, surfing with two world champions in Kelly Slater and Carissa Moore, pushing our limits on bigger boards at Laniakea and Sunset Beach. CSI board member Eric Arakawa was so accommodating at his factory and we all got to see the shaping machine, froth over boards and be encouraged by Eric's gracious manner. Pastor Larry at Sunset Beach Christian Church introduced us to the staff and we were welcomed into the weekly life of the church. We took on a 7-metre deck build around a mango tree for the youth work and made a heap of progress ready for the team coming in the second week. Meals were shared and prepared and each evening had a facilitated conversation of a real life issue. Since some of the guys had an interest in woodwork, we toured a number of woodshops and galleries.
Week two was a much frothier team of 12, ranging from 28-55 from a local CS outreach called "The Shaping Bay" it had a mix of dedicated Christians, seekers and atheists alike. The amazing bonding of surf, community and God's spirit was palpable, with even the non-believers acknowledging that was something unique about the location and the team. Surf pumped from 20' and dropped to 4' during the week and most guys surfed some of the biggest waves of their lives. The deck was completed, one of our team had 12 stitches from a loose decking board and we talked story over a campfire at night burning the offcuts! We also picked up a couple of stray Aussies there alone who joined our company. One lone Brazillian was rescued by a member in the dark after being washed out to sea in a rip….all in a days surf in Hawaii!! Check out more photos and story here.
The next trip is planned for J-Bay, June 9-16, 2018 and open to not only 'old salts' but all friends of CS globally. A similar program will happen wth experiences with CS locally as well as visiting the township and a game park. Check out the event page on Facebook for more information!