“It will completely destroy a large part of the lagoon in the face of the most beautiful wave in the world!”
A few weeks back the vaguely humorous story of Olympic organisers tearing down the old WSL wooden judging tower at Teahupoo and replacing it with a magnificent aluminium structure for the three-day event at a cost of five mill US.
Necessary, I suppose.
The old tower is rickety as hell, and who wants to be responsible for besuited officials plunging to their doom after a cross-beam snaps and brings the whole thing down, but a little rich, given Paris 2024 has positioned itself as the “sustainable” Games.
Tahitian surfers ain’t so thrilled, as you can imagine.
It’s their home and they surf and fish and play on these reefs.
Local surfer Tahurai Henry, therefore, has organised a protest against the construction on Sunday at eleven am, Tahitian time. I’m writing this at nine pm, Saturday, Sydney time, so in fourteen hours or so.
“We’re up against this judge’s tour project that will completely destroy a large part of the lagoon in the face of the most beautiful wave in the world! A construction worth over 500 million francs for 3-4 days of competition that won’t be reused for our local surfers! ( No Inheritance )
“We will begin the walk from Teahupo’o town hall to the tip in front of the surf spot! Come one come all 🙏
“TEAHUPOO NEEDS YOU.”
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Support for the action is being felt worldwide.
Eli Olson, a thirty-year-old jiujitsu black belt who grew up shredding alongside the Florence bro’s, posted a before and after of the Tahitian paradise along with the fighting words.
“Taking advantage of the local community and their kindness. I stand with my Tahitian brothers.”
If you happen to be in French Polynesia tomoz, swing on over to Tahiti-iti and put some boots on the ground.
And, in the interim, thrill a little to Henry’s post of Lucas Chumbo at Teahupoo.