PLB art director Sharon Brasen with the wonderful John Wade and Randy Rarick.
Randy and ed JB heading out for an overly eventful surf at Sunset.
JB heading home business class – the travel insurance company (Southern Cross Travel Insurance) insisted he be able to lie down. (Well if you insist.)
15 March 18
Clearly getting more than they bargained for, the ed and the art director headed into the Pacific in search of a fabled maitai fountain and a mystic righthander and have only just landed home – beat but beyond happy.
The ed recalls: “Fifth morning I went for an early surf at Sunset with Randy Rarick. It wasn’t big, but big enough, and too good for me as it turned out.
“I wasn’t feeling great, short of breath paddling, and just out-of-sorts. Randy was looking out for me, caught a couple of good ones himself, and called me onto one that stood up in just the right spot for me.
“Longest drop I’ve had in quite a while, got a couple of turns in but I knew I just had to get out of there so surfed it as far as I could straight in over Val’s Reef.
“I got up on the sand, crazy dizzy and spinning, sat down on a rock wall, laid down, died.
“My wife Sharon and great friend and North Shore local John Wade were watching from about 80 metres away, up where we paddled out. They thought my behavior a bit odd, began walking towards me, and then running when I didn’t respond to calls.
“Short version, Sharon and John gave me frantic, amateur CPR and bought me back from the other side. Then the lifeguards arrived, fireman, ambulance, and through three hospitals I went over the next two weeks.”
Turns out the ed had a dodgy valve he’d apparently had all his life and had no idea about, never had a sick day really.
Also turns out the travel insurance company were true to their word and covered all the bills (US $270,000!), had a brilliant surgeon and team, and the ed is back – sore but beyond happy – and getting better every day. Nightmares aside, art director (and hero) Sharon doing good too.
The new issue of the mag should be landing all over the place this week.
Will be getting the website rolling again now, plus Facebook and Instagram (Moonwalker did a brilliant job of keeping Insta posted btw.) PLB NewsWire will be back next week. Well that’s the plan.
Thanks everybody for the well wishes and thoughts over the past couple of weeks.
NICE TO BE BACK!
PS: Big love to John and Fabienne Wade (may everybody have friends like these).