The éS Hawaii vacation.
In the summer of 2000, before the completion of ‘Menikmati’, a trip to Hawaii was organised for two purposes: doing a bit of promotion via the local distributor, with a demo, some autograph signing, and a radio show. And of course, offering a bit of sunny vacation to the team.
From the beginning, I was totally opposed to that trip, which came in the final two or three
months of filming for the video. I was super bummed. For me, it was going to be a total waste of time, while we still had to film a lot of important stuff, especially with Koston who was still miles away from having a killer part.
Instead, I was sent on a holiday. I was super bummed. I believed that the video should have
been the only focus. So I didn’t enjoy my time, for my unique travel to Hawaii.
Indeed, I even got close to die, one day when we went out surfing, that time when Arto says
“Ready for this Fred? I’m not gonna drown you know”. Local surfers took us for a session, to a proper spot near Diamond Head. I never ever surfed before. They handed us small boards, and took off to the waves. I started to paddle, but could never make it to the waves. As I realised this was not a situation for me, I started to be exhausted. I turned around. But then, I could not make it back to the beach. As a total beginner, I made the typical mistake of trying to battle the strong currents. I got even more exhausted. I got off my board to float and get some rest. But I cut up my foot on some reef. The sun was going down, and I really started to stress. I was away from everyone, and on my own. It was getting dark, and was feeling hopeless. I couldn’t paddle anymore. I didn’t know what to do. It was very scary. I tried to stay as calm as possible. I laid on the board to save on some energy. After a short time, I raised my head, and suddenly, out of the blue, I was 15 feet away from the beach. When I touched ground, I was totally drained. If I would have get caught by an opposite current, the body of a french dude would have been found later on for sure. Next few days were tough. It took some time for my body to recover. My first experience of surfing was a disaster, and was hating it. As we were staying right on Waikīkī beach, its gentle rollers that offer smooth and long wave rides motivated me to try again. And this time it was much more fun. éS invited many people on that trip: Arto, McCrank, Burnquist (and some family), TX, as well as Atiba and his twin brother Ako Jefferson, Don Brown, and team manager Tony Evjenth.
In the end, that trip was maybe a good thing, it gave a break to everyone before the final weeks of filming. I was super down to film hard all the time, but maybe the riders couldn’t have handle it all the way through. And regarding Koston, he finally did a lot of his bangers in the remaining weeks after that Hawaiian break.
Additional filming by Don Brown and Ako Jefferson.
In memory of Tony Evjenth.