Catching that wave

I have always wanted to surf, and to catch a wave in Australia is, I feel, is an absolute must! When I was younger, while on holiday in Cornwall, I hired a surfboard and had a go without any instruction; although I did manage to stand up, I wobbles all over the place and was only actually stood up for a very short amount of time.

Mojo Surf is a company that runs surf camps and academies in Bali, Indonesia, Byron Bay as well as at an undisclosed location called “SPOT X”.  It’s at “SPOT X” where we had our 2 day surf camp; a beginners’ camp which helped with the basics of paddling out, popping up and riding the wave.

Arriving the night before our camp started, we met our wonderful guide, Anna, who showed us to our room, gave us a tour of the camp and told us all we needed to know.  She was so happy, knowledgable and helpful; meeting us before and after our surf lessons and every time we saw her she checked in with us.  All the staff were so friendly and loved getting us all involved in the activities, which made for a great community vibe.

So the next morning, was our first surf lesson. It was a very early start as we were in the water for 8 o’clock.  Our instructors, Jack and Nick, took us through a quick theory lesson on waves, rips and safety, as well as a few hand signals should we need help whilst in the water. Then it was onto the beach to learn how to surf; on the sand we practised our paddling and pop up, as well as when to pop up and tips on staying on the board. And so into the water to have a go, I was so proud of myself when I stood up on my second attempt and once I had done it once, there was no stopping me! Although, I continued to fall off but I would say I was getting up on the board more than I was falling off!

SPOT X had had a few days of big waves due to a storm system out at sea. The waves remained really big and strong pulling us out to sea in the current so quickly. For this reason we only surfed in the shallow area, waist/chest deep depending on your height. Even so we were still catching some powerful waves.  Jack and Nick were great, patient and good at spotting little things that made a lot of difference to our technique.

After a couple of hours in the water, riding the waves, we walked back up the beach to camp to enjoy the rest of the day. Harriet and I chose to spend the afternoon on the beach topping up our tans, reading and blogging.  I love just lying on the beach and watching the world go by.  As we headed back for dinner we were stopped by one of the guys running activities, he invited us to a sand castle building competition, winner got a bag of goon.   There were 6 teams with the option to build either a sand castle or sand sculpture.  Harriet and I chose a dolphin sculpture. We didn’t win the competition but we had a blast building it.  I haven’t built sand castles in years and it took me back to family holidays on the Cornish coast.

Back at camp, it was dinner time and as we all queued up for our dinner the night staff introduced themselves, very loudly and with a lot of energy!  We spent the evening hanging out in the community area and getting to know all those sharing our surf lesson.

After a good night’s sleep, we were ready for Day 2 and our second surf lesson. With a later start of 10 o’clock, our instructors, Kate and Connor, gave us a refresher of how to pop up and showed us also how to turn. Back into the water and I managed to stand up on my first wave!!! I was thrilled 😁 Kate and Connor were great and gave some great tips. 2 hours later we emerged from the water exhausted but thrilled that we could now catch a wave. I have a way to go before I can call myself a “pro surfer” but I think I’m on my way 😉

The afternoon was hot! we passed the sunny hours relaxing in the shade and watching a game of volleyball.  Dinner and social time followed and not long after, as it was a Friday, the party started too with limbo and twister getting very competitive!

The final event of the evening was the “awkward dance” competition.  Although, Harriet and I didn’t take part it was so funny watching others making up extreme dancie moves, with the ultraviolet light making a great affect and atmosphere.  It was so much fun!

Unfortunately our Greyhound bus was at 10pm so we soon had to pack up early and leave the fun and partying of SPOT X.  I love that I got the chance to finally learn to surf and it is all down to the amazing staff and instructors at SPOT X. I can’t wait to try it again!

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