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My name is Nat Foster and I was born and raised in Leucadia, across the street
from Stonesteps Beach. That’s where my dad first taught me how to surf. Organized
sports dominated my childhood, but after each strenuous baseball season I would follow my dad down the stairs at Stonesteps and he would push me into waves on his
longboard. By middle school all I wanted to do was surf. I’ve probably spent half of my
life down at stonesteps so it’s ironic that I’m still such an inept longboarder. The annual longboard contest is a major event in the community and I’ve done it a couple times with no success. At least the parties are always fun. I usually excel at those. Although it’s nothing worth complaining about, I am reluctantly based in Cardiff now.
I’ve worked at Hansen’s for almost three years. I started as a box boy while I
was still the most popular boy at San Dieguito Academy, where I graduated from in
2015 at the top of my class socially. I was shoved into the real world alongside my best friends: Brennan Aubol, the one who got me the job at Hansen’s and taught me how to do a decent cutback, and Tory Knowles, the second most popular boy back in high school, whom I got a job for in the snowboard shop last year. High school is far in the rearview as now my younger brother sits on the throne which was once mine, inscribed with the quote “ Here perches the king of cool, to pass judgement upon all those deemed less than in order to preserve the balance of social continuity” We will all be turning twenty in the next few months and the fork in the road is becoming painfully apparent, as being cool doesn’t mean anything anymore. Brennan will be transferring from Mira Costa to a university sometime soon. He’s good at math and is going to study business. Tory is a lifeguard, working summers in Encinitas and travelling to places like Samoa for work in the offseason. He figures this routine will last him a while. I just broke my routine of shuffling into classes late and being laughed at under a false assumption of why that’s always the case. The checkered Vans and long hair probably gave them the idea. I’m still working for Hansen’s, just not at Hansen’s. I’m in Australia with a notebook and a few surfboards. Chasing the pipedream of becoming a writer, the coolest thing I could think of, and surfing along the way, A la Barbarian Days, now on sale at the world’s most iconic surf shop and my second home.
What made you decide to take a long surf trip?
Leading up to my own dismissal from school I was going through a sort of
existential crisis. I had no time to surf and It seemed to always be offshore in the
mornings of the fall semester. Tory, had been travelling all over and was headed to
Australia and Indo after his recent gig as a boatman in Samoa. On the premise that I
was to cut back on my teen party-boy antics, my dad backed my decision to leave
school to travel in search of waves and stories to write about.
Where are you traveling & why?
Currently I’m in Australia, where I’ll be until the end of March. I came here to
meet Tory and travel up and down the East coast surfing all the waves we see in edits
back home. We’ve been as far North as Noosa and as far South as Sydney. We’re in
Byron Bay right now, which is nothing like I expected it to be. The center of town is like Huntington during the U.S. Open, but we found a place to stay for free on the edge of town where it’s a lot more laid back. We’ll be in Indonesia all of April, because those are the best waves in the world.
How did you budget for this trip?
Like I said earlier, one of the rules set for me was to limit my nights out, which
saved me a lot of money. I feel a bit healthier too, even smarter. Other than that I just
ate at home.
How many surfboards did you bring? What shapes & Models?
I brought four boards with me and my shoulder still hurts from lugging my bag
around the airport and on the train out of Sydney. I brought my 6’1” Lost...Tube Pig
which I’m saving for Indo and is currently safe from Tory’s recklessness at a friends
house on the central coast. Next in the quiver is my 5’10’ Lost… Pocket Rocket, which is my go to board back home, but most of the waves I’ve rode so far have been pretty soft so I’ve only ridden it a couple times here. Next is my 6’3’’ Rubber Soul single fin. Irode that one at Noosa and had tons of fun on it. The last board I packed, is a 5’7” Rubber Soul Asym. It was shaped by 15 year old Koby Gilchrist and I’ve ridden it every day there’s been waves. It’s probably the best board I’ve ever had.
Tell us what else you packed and why?
Aside from a few changes of clothes all I brought with me was my laptop, a
Journal, a toothbrush, and a book to help pass the time.