A damage control report from a less conventional easter weekend.
Boredom is a dangerous game. As any surfer know no waves on a trip equals more danger. With a crew of 13 it’s even more dangerous. We spent a day in France doing nothing. The boys jumped in for a little wiggle but spring in France is a fickle mistress and we’ve been plagued by less then favourable water sliding conditions. The most beautiful thing about Hossegor when the waves are less then optimal is the proximity of the Spanish border, and thus San Sebastian.
Nestled in the Basque Coast 50 miles south, the lights of San Seb twinkle invitingly. Luring the unsuspecting youth with a wink and a knowing smile into a vortex of amazing food and late nights then humanly thought possible. We loaded up and headed south. Spain is a largely predominant catholic country and Easter is big news . Semana Santa is the biggest holiday of the year and we’ve touched down into the culmination of it all. The infamous saturday night. It’s a beautiful shitshow.
Everything is fully booked, we’re spread amongst 3 hotels and we’ve had to leave the cars in 3 separate car parks. We swing by our good friends at Pukas surf shop, and are met with warm Basque greetings and numerous beers of a cold nature. Spilling out into cobbled streets and a familiar sensation takes over, voices begin to get louder and beers and being popped with increasing ferocity. It’s happening again. Leon Glatzer and Gony arrive after a 10 hour drive from a QS in Portugal (which co-incidentally) Gony won and so we celebrate. As if we needed any more encouragement. We spill further into the dimly lit streets of the old town and by this time we are a crew of 20, but we could be 30.
We’re rolling fast now and picking up crew along with us. Some riding the train for an hour, for one bar. Others stay on board until the final stop when the bars kick out at 8am. We sit outside bars and talk, we mingle, we gorge ourselves on the most delicious food, we try and learn Basque, we speak Basque poorly to local girls who humour us with sympathetic encouragement, we drink Vokda Limon and Cañas with habitual ease. The now very familiar haze decends. We separate. Some smoke bomb home, others dance under neon lights until the rising of the sun.
We wake in various states of distress. Sore heads and red eyes. Stories from the night before are traded over a bizarre breakfast of Cider and more tapas. We are all wearing berets and it’s beginning again. An executive decision is made. We need to stop. We break free of the vortex. Cars are loaded and we skip back across the border to a vague safe haven, a vague perception of normality but fuck it, we’d even take a vague sense of sanity at this point.
Back to france (again) and it’s warm and sunny. We take over Café de Paris in the centre of town. We move onto a rooftop in the centre of town and draw mutual glances approval of from locals and tourists alike as the beams bulge under the strain of the weight of us. A suitable metaphor.
Another day dawns. There’s a little wave out the front and at the time of writing froth lords Burch and Chary Quivront are suiting up and going for a dip. Willy is wearing sunglasses and I haven’t seen Noa. “The worst hangover of my life” is bandied around by a certain team manager. Tomorrow we go to Bordeaux and then Paris where Eurothrash meets it’s conclusion and this train terminates. All change please. All change.
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