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            <<  Torquay, 8-May-2013  >>

Bells Beach. Where's Bodhi's body?

Bells Beach - Australia's surfing mecca, Point Break flashback and first encounter with Australian wildlife

I decided that in Australia I will try couch surf as much as possible. In Slovakia I hosted some people and it was always great, so this time I decided to try the other side of couch surfing Ė being the guest. Itís a good way how to meet local people, have some fun and also save some money. Before leaving Nepal I sent couple of CS requests to people in Melbourne, and I managed to get a place at house of Natasha, woman who must have hosted or visited at least 800 people(!) as she had almost 500 positive references. Wow, I didnít even know that someone can couch surf that during one life. But as I could stay with her only starting from Wednesday, I had 3 days to kill, and I didnít feel like staying in Melbourne all the time, so I decided to go for 3 days to Torquay, town about 100km west from Melbourne. Torquay is the closest town to Bells Beach, which is one of the most famous surf spots in the world. Itís here where ASP World Tour (= the main professional surfing ďleagueĒ) is held in Australia, so you can imagine that this is The Place for Aussie surfing. And itís also Bells Beach, where Patrick Swayze aka Bodhi makes his final suicidal surf ride in the Point Break movie. So I decided to look for Bodhiís dead body and spent 3 days around Torquay. I mostly went there to see The Spot, but I didnít know that itís place of great natural beauty. Bells Beach is really amazing, with Antarctica-fueled waves hitting imposing sandstone cliffs. The southern coast of Australia is nicknamed Surf Coast and itís also natural reservation / national park. I didnít expect being it so stunning.
ActualIy went to Bells Beach itself just once, because itís couple of kilometers from Torquay and thereís no any means of transport apart having your own car, so I had to walk there (and what an amazing walk that was, along all those cliffs) and I hitchhiked on the way back. The waves were not dramatically huge, swell was off, but there was couple of guys surfing there. So as said, I didnít see any monster waves or monster surfing, but it was rewarding just to be there, and plus as said, it was really beautiful. Australiaís Bells Beach, Teahupoo in Tahiti and Banzai Pipeline in Hawaii are probably the most famous surf spots in the world and by now I have seen them all, although sadly, the only place where I saw at least someone surfing was here at Bells Beach.
Anyway, I spent 3 days mostly just admiring the surrounding cliffs, but one cool thing really happened. Actually two, now I realized. First, I had Ben & Jerryís ice cream :-) (but probably only Samo knows the background hereÖ) and second, the really cool one, was that while I was jogging, out of sudden echidna crossed my trail (vsuvka pre Slovensko, kedze nepredpokladam, ze poznate slovo echidna, je to jezura). That lovely little creature (together with platypus the only eggs-laying mammal) just walked out of bush and sniffed around the trail. Awesome! I saw a living echidna in wild nature, just like that. Cute! By the way, losing all that weight and trekking in high altitude in Nepal obviously incredibly improved mu fitness. I got this idea that I would do some jogging, so I just started to run and kept on running and running and running like Duracell bunny. Until now the longest time Iíve ever ran was for maybe 30 minutes, but this time I was running for almost one hour and I felt like I could run forever, like Forrest Gump. I had to stop not because of being tired or breathless, but because after one hour my knees started to unbearably hurt (they survived EBC Trek, but running is obviously too much for them). So I can say that Iím in best shape ever. And for this, the God rewarded me with echidna.

Iíve got one more thing to tell. As mentioned in the previous post, some unknown women who sat near from me on the train, very kindly gave me a ride to Torquay. Actually her son, in his early twenties, picked us up at the station and he gave us the ride. And while they stopped for few minutes at his house they rolled themselves cigarettes and smoked together. I told them that I have probably never seen mother and son smoking happily together like that, and just few seconds later, the son asked her ďDo you have some weed?Ē and she reached into her pocket and then handed him a pack of grass. Isnít it cute, this motherly love? :-)


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     MARCEL STRBAK | www.strbak.com | www.facebook.com/marcel.strbak