I just had the pleasure of
spending the Holiday season break with my family on Oahu’s famous North Shore
with my longtime friend, Fred Patacchia Sr. and his family, including my Godson
Frederick Patacchia Jr. We were not only on the North Shore, but we were
lodging like Kings in the nicest home on Sunset Beach! We felt the warm embrace
of their Aloha Spirit and we made many new friends along the way. The surf, as
you might imagine, was pumping 24-7! The view from the porch was unbelievable!
If you looked to your right you saw Sunset Beach with heaving huge thick peaks
followed by rainbow sprays. A glance out front brought Kammieland and Stonies
into focus with softer waves by North Shore standards but by So Cal standards
mighty good! And then looking to my left it’s the Rocky Point air show and
barrel riding contest. We are talking died and went to heaven views
Rusty, (my son) and I rode bikes to Pipeline one day to see Jamie O’Brian
dismantle the other guys in the final of the Pipeline Masters. It wasn’t even
close. Sunny, Bruce and Kalani were all scrambling for second after Jamie
nailed down 3 consecutive backside barrels in a row, each one deeper than the
last before they could even score one good wave collectively.
In Jamie’s semi heat, he and Bruce eliminated Cory
Lopez and Slater, so Cory and Kelly stayed out during the break in an
unprecedented two man 30 minute expression session and da guys from Florida
killed it! The highlight of the barrel riding expo was a goofy footed Slater
pulling into and out of a pipedream. It wasn’t until I got home and viewed all
of my footage on the TV. that I realized the goofy foot had a white shirt on and
that it was the six time World Champ. Even cooler than watching the Pipeline
final live though was what I witnessed next. Because across the Kam Highway
from Pipeline sits the Sunset Beach Elementary School where the 3rd
annual All Bus Kickball Tourney had just gotten underway.
Teams from all over the North Shore were ready to do
battle, Hawaiian style. Bar B Q’s were smoking up a storm and tarps lined the
school yard shielding the teams from the hot mid-day tropical sunshine. As the
teams talked pre-game strategy and sipped their chilled beverages the games were
about to begin. They were definitely pumped up!
The Kickballers, some in the 300 pound and up category
battled all day and were still playing as light failed and darkness enveloped
the field. Team “ALL RIP” definitely won the fashion statement award with their
green short-shorts and white All Rip T Shirts and battled their way to an
overtime loss in the final two
Our seventeen days in Hawaii went way too fast but it
was 17 days that I will never forget and cannot wait to repeat someday. I can
tell you that the future of professional surfing is in good hands and that the
Hawaiians look poised to keep the crown for some time to come. There is an
incredible focus on the North Shore right now and the rest of the world better
After living on the North Shore myself in 1976-77 it
was wonderful to return and see it so unchanged on a physical level. There are
no strip malls or big buildings. As a matter of fact it’s as if there had been
a 25 year building moratorium. It is still country, MAHALO. Well, its more
like country with laptops. I mean why walk out onto the porch and look for
yourself when you can bring up Surfline and see the whole North Shore without
getting into your car. Tides, crowd situation, forecasts, data, data, data.
Walk out to the beach and just look? Who do you think I am? Greg Noll?
So, yeah, on one hand its sort of high-tech but on the
other hand the best way to get to Waimea Bay for an afternoon of sunning and
world class body whomping is on the big ole fat tire bike in your flip flops and
trunks on the bike bath that runs through the koa alongside of Kam Hwy. You
should try that sometime.
If you would like to see for yourself, I have a DVD of
the highlights of our trip where you can see the house firsthand and the VIEW!
For the price of a decent hotel suite, you can land smack dab in the epicenter
of modern surfing and have this world class experience for yourself. PLEASE
contact me for further information or contact Big Fred yourself at Sunset Hale
Vacation Rentals. You won’t be sorry and for everything else, there’s always