A terrifying new cultural passenger…
Mid-Length Man lifted his head off the pillow and watched lines of whitewash zip along the inside section of the point, smug with feelings of vindication at the decision to open the Transporter barn doors after his 4:30am piss on the nearby pandanus.
If not for the crochet beanie-wearing guy on the surfboard bench seat partially obscuring his view, his head need not be lifted.
Twenty-one hours earlier, Mid-Length Man was lost in thoughts of high-lining while grinding a carefully measured portion of Campos beans.
8:45… Urgh… Karen would be in soon for her single origin on soy. He needed a break. These cash-in-hand shifts were a great top up to JobKeeper but he needed to reset. The cafe’s patronage had surged when the restrictions were lifted but his stress levels were now peaking.
He needed to escape. A strike mission to Crescent Head.
Mid-Length Man flicked a text his snuggle buddy Sammi. She was keen, but had a shift at the local Mex joint that evening. They would hit the Pac Highway closer to tenand roll into Crescent by two-thirty. He opened the Seabreeze App. Port Macquarie was reading two metres of south east and light sou-west wind for the next three days. He could already taste the coastal estuary in the gentle offshore being funneled out to the point by Killick Creek.
In the muted greys of pre-dawn he could make out three figures sitting at the top of the point. Two wore hoods. The third scratching into one riding a kneeboard.
What would he ride?
A perfect morning for his 7’6″ MOTE twinny. Those channels would bite and drive. Not punchy enough for the Josh Keogh and the Mackie flex-tail, side-cut, long fish he’d packed could wait.
It didn’t feel right surfing it now. It was ordered for the Ments, the Barrenjoy, Lances.
Mid-Length Man quietly suited up in a three-two Need before accidentally kicking over an empty stubby of Coopers Sparkling he’d placed next to the tyre only hours before. Sammi stirred, pushed a mat of golden blonde hair from her face then reached out and closed one of the barn doors. A faint waft of the face balm she applied last night drifted from the van, mango, coconut and jojoba.
Pre-purchase, he had debated internally between the Need four mm boot and the Vans Surf Hi. Need are core but Vans are Vans. Superior grip and that stripe. Even more so the offset white toe jammed perfectly with the volan deck of the MOTE. Look good, feel good he told himself. They slipped on effortlessly and he folded his wettie back down, though careful to keep the checkered pull tab exposed.
Mid-Length Man delicately placed his board on the weathered sandstone at the back end of the keyhole. He tied up his hair in a bun and watched a hooded dad-bod streak down the line on pistachio-tinted Tracker. Probably drives a Kluger he mused. He flex checked his fins out of habit. Torren Martyn keels.
A lump surged across the suck rock and he swung.
Relax. Consider your movements. Stay low. Feel the energy.
A soupy brown wall stood up and he adjusted slightly, aiming down the line.
The kneeboarder hooted and threw a shaka.
Mid-Length Man rinsed off under the public shower behind the surf club and sauntered passed the swelling crowd ordering banana smoothies round front. Two Coastalwatch Dads in Carve tees were setting up their tripods rapping about the Surfline buyout. Their sandy haired offspring – Taj and Kai – waxed their sticker-covered Pyzels. This morning they were to focus on combos.
With any luck, Sammi would have a fresh brew of Kenya Gikanda Kangocho on the portable gas stove.
As he neared the Transporter, there she was, wearing that pastel yellow dress. The lace detail resting on her knees drew his eye to her slender set of warmed brown sugar legs. Barefoot. She wore his denim sherpa jacket. A perfect messy bun of golden blonde hair held together by a tortoiseshell colored clip. Steam rose from the Bialetti capturing the soft morning rays.
She was reading a story about Lee-Anne Curren in the new Acetone mag.
It was Sammi’s turn.
Mid-Length Man sipped from his Huskee cup as Sammi stroked effortlessly into an inside runner.
Her new 9’6″ Gato supplying an ample catwalk for Sammi to traverse.
He could not be further from Sydney’s cafe hustle.
Mid-Length Man tasted notes of plum jam and grapefruit.