The Student Windsurfing Association

"It will take more than one of you evil-non-virgins to deport me!!!"


Leaving France on a 42 foot Jeaneau the second i touched down was possibly too much to hope for in a plan involveing a windsurfer.. The team to collect me were waiting for a good few hours, as was i upon arrival. The difference being that I was at a bar in La rochelle aeroport and the rest of the team had the car and were in Nantes aeroport. That being sorted we sped (yes sped is the technical term as our hire car got flashed by two seperate cameras!) through the NW french countryside until reaching the yacht and embarking the folowing morning - 1.5days after i had heard about the trip at all.

Crossing the Bay of Biscay was a breeze and really not rough at all and about 10 days later we reached port in Madeira (small portugeuse island). I discovered that my grandfather's first cousin's daughter had married the ambassador of the island and was part of the 'Blandy' madeira wine mafia but unfortunatly we never got to meet-next time. I also managed to paint a giant SWA logo in bright blue paint across the wall of the dock before we left so look out if ever you visit!

The journey continued out into the ocean on our way to the caribbean (thank god i would know how to dress appropriately following the Aussie Kiss 5 party theme... ) We caught tuna and dorados enroute and saw hundreds of dolphins who spent hours playing in our bow-wave. I was only slightly disturbed when a black shadow rose to the surface 2m behind our boat and was easily the size OF our boat (glancing up from a gentle toe dabbling in the boat's wake is slightly ruined by these things..). It turned out to be a group/pod/shoal/school/posse of whales who thought it would be funny to scare the hell out of me!

Being a true boardrider I managed to grab some random driftwood and wakeboard behind the boat on the topping lift on a flat day- video footage to come..

But then we safely reached land and i was safe in the British Virgin Islands. Or so i thought for then the  evil immigration dept (who obviously were all not virgins and were somehow immune to my charms dammit!)  decided i had to leave the island. So I didn't give them the satisfaction of me kicking and screaming but instead took the wise? decision of hiding out on the island under the code name of.... 'Anthony Lindley'. DaDaDaaaaarrr! yes, they never suspect that Beaker and the evil Anthony were infact one!!

After a beach bonfire almost set light to the island after we piled up half a wooden house froma a building site, sprinkled it liberally with local vodka and stood back, i realised it was time to move on and got myself on a plane to Antigua. I only had a one way ticket and the vague knowledge that a UWE girl was working at sunsail somewher eon the island, (the size of the island didn't worry me, i figured it couldn't be that big.) So a week of sunsailing followed, i managed to get free accom with a windsurfer dude that lived near the club who i met randomly and the beach bums didn't seem too fussed if i happened to borrow some kit and hit the water every now and then... The tricky bit was food, the week was spent convincing the locals working in the restaurant that on days when food was inclusive for the guests i was 'a guest' but when the guests had to pay for food, hell i was staff and deserved free food!! So the week passed and i successfully avoided management enough to get a free week courtesy of sunsail. Thanks guys!!
Then as the storm set in on the last day the beach was closed and the black clouds raced up on us, everyone hit the bar except one lowly windsurfer who was poised at the waters edge with a small sail and a gleam in his eye.. Needless to say i got to the plane only just in time and spend the journey in wet boardies...  In antigua that seemed alright, arriving in London in freezing fog on Christmas eve only wearing wet boardies and a small tshirt was not the best plan.
Livin the dream x



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