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Peter Jones, Surfer, South Africa

  • 2 min read
By June 2008 there had been a number of shark sightings at our local `extremely remote` surf spot deep in the Transkei home land on the East Coast of South Africa. On a number of weekends prior to this, the guys had been `chased` out of the water by some very large `men in grey suites`. On this particular weekend the waves were exceptionally good. During my second surf, while surfing with Andre Malherbe, one of our top surfers in the country ( just the two of us out ). I had my well used trusty 7 hr Surf Unit attached to my board. As usual for this spot. Andre does not wear a unit. I tuned to paddle for a wave, Andre was slightly further out and thus had a better view of any movement in the water. I was focused on taking off on the steepest part of the wave, when I heard Andre`s panicked scream “shark, shark”. He didn’t want to duck dive as he may actually have hit the shark. I let the wave go by and totally `un-panicked` asked him what the problem was. He replied “Fxxxk didn’t you see the shark?”, as he hastily paddled towards me. “NO “, I replied, “What happened? “. He replied that the shark was moving in the wave, a few meters from him but heading towards me at a mean speed, as it got extremely close to me it just, cartwheeled backwards. I would like to think that this was when it was in `the shark shield` zone. I asked Andre what he wanted me to do. His response was “fxxxk, just come and sit here next to me and to allow me to take the next wave”, which he scurried into and went in over the rocks. I on the other hand was still feeling pretty stoked about the waves and started paddling out when about 4 different groups of people on the bank started screaming “shark”. Well, reluctantly I got out of the water. To surf another day.

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