NOT From A Land Down Under

Owen Wright flares a backside tail-whip


It’s not driving on the left that’s so tough. That’s actually surprisingly easy. It’s walking on the left that I still could not get right until the end of the trip. Every time when walking towards someone, your initial reaction is to move to your right. Of course everyone else’s reaction is to move to their left, which puts you into pretty much a dance off with that person until one of you just stops and lets the other walk by. Either way, someone is gonna feel like they just "Got served."


In the US we overuse stop lights and stop signs. The geniuses over in Australia have roundabouts and Give Way signs which make traffic flow so much better. Now tell me how many times you pull up to a Stop sign and you don’t really need to come to a complete halt? All the damn time, right? But if you get caught by a cop not stopping completely, you’re bound for an unscheduled bill in your mailbox. And that sucks


You know how you hear those references (example in Wedding Crashers) about when you flush a toilet south of the {{{Equator}}} the water spins the opposite way? This is not true. The only toilets I saw in Australia the water didn’t spin either which way. It just refilled and pushed the old water down. says it’s dependent on the toilet, not the location. That clears that up.


McDonalds is the same thing as Maccas. They just call it Maccas in Australia and if you said you’re going to eat at McDonalds they would barely know what you’re talking about. Now for some ridiculous reason the people down there think their Maccas and their Subways are more healthy than the ones in the US. Now this is just annoying. I’m here to tell you folks: they are exactly the same thing. The single difference is that all Maccas in Australia have free Internet. In the US they do not. What a great idea to lure Internet-less seppos into those hell holes. The food is not even 1percent different from the food here. Same exact shit. Don’t believe the hype.


Now most of us are familiar with this from grade school, but not many of us are experts on the Metric System. So when someone says the weight in a certain amount of kilograms, or they drove a certain amount of kilometers, we aren’t exactly sure what that translates to in pounds or miles. We can be decent estimators, but it’d be a bitch to calculate it all in your head. Also, Celsius and Fahrenheit are dumb. Can we just pick one and use that? Why is the US the last place that hasn’t switched over to the Metric system? It’s just heinous.


The accent thing is contagious as all get out. After only two weeks I caught myself saying things like "It’s ‘that’ good out there" and "I reckon there’s heaps more waves at Winki." I didn’t mean to do it. It just happens. Just like living in the south and picking up the Southern Slang (ain’t, y’all, ma’am, etc…).

Steph gets mobbed!


Not in a literal sense. She’s normal size. I’m talking about her being an absolute superstar there. I even heard from a unnamed source that she’s actually bigger, and more popular, than Mick Fanning. That might not quite sink in to everyone but Mick is a World Champ from Australia and when was the last World Champ they had? Occy, like a decade ago? We’re talking about a female surfer being bigger than Mick? That’s hard to fathom. After seeing her roll down to the comp during one lay-day, I’m a believer. Never have I witnessed someone not named Slater or Tiger get mobbed for an interview, or photo, or autograph that much. Every single person in a kilometer radius wanted something from her. It was chaotic. She’s moving to the US for a few months this summer though. No one will recognize her here, so it should be a nice break from the surf-crazed groupies back in her homeland.


This kid is the real deal. On, or right under the same level as Julian Wilson, Mitch Coleborn, or any other hot junior out there. Don’t think there’s any up and coming Americans that even compare to him. I could easily see him threatening for a World Title at some point in the future. He’s a ‘do it all’ type of surfer that really has no flaws in his game. The freesurfing ability is there, the contest ability, the big wave balls, the small wave agility, backside, frontside, in the air, in the tube, on a rail, style, and marketability. Push him into the elite category ASAP.

Winkipop going off


That small stretch of coast to the south-west of Torquay is amazing. It’s just built for surfing. A regular footer’s paradise. But clearly, Winkipop is a much better wave than Bells. Anyone will agree. It’s faster, longer, stands up better, barrels more, and is just a flat-out higher performance wave than Bells. Winki’s is like a more user friendly version of J-Bay, no kidding. I even heard that Slater says it’s the best place to surf to practice for J-Bay, although I can’t confirm that straight from the horses mouth. I can see how Bells earned its mystique back in the early days of surfing. It’s the perfect wave when you think about suiting the boards people rode back then. But for the past 15 years plus, surfing is so much better suited for Winkipop. When the contest director made the decision to move the contest site down there for a few heats, good things happened. Bells has a better setup for fans watching the action, but the surfing going down at Winki blows Bells away.