Okay Anne, where are you right now?
So right now, I am on a bit of an adventure. In a world of lock downs and isolation, I packed my bags and found a way ‘out’ of all that. I’m at a place in the Maldives called Niyama and have been there for the past 3 months. It’s a small island, Its’ only a 20-minute bike ride from one end to the other. The waves have been pumping here pretty much every day, and I’m just living a simple life with limited luxuries.
How did you end up there?
I was recommended to apply for a job as a surf guide/instructor over here, and before I knew it, I got the job and I packed my bags. I must admit, I was a little bit nervous before I arrived. I didn’t know what to expect and I’m still unsure of how I’m going to get home. But that nervous feeling before I arrived is positive, it feels the same as when I’m about to compete or go out in big surf. I have learnt that when I get this ‘nervous in a good way’ feeling, I must follow it. So I did, and I guess that’s how I ended up in the Maldives in the middle of a global pandemic.
Take us through your role and what you do on a daily basis.
My role here is mainly to organise and coordinate the surfing activities. We provide surf lessons and surf transfers (which are usually more fun). The job is great. I get to surf when I’m on the transfers so I’m pretty much getting paid to surf, which is the next best thing to pro surfing haha. In my spare time I like to surf, like a lot. I think I’m in the water up to 4 hrs most days. I practice pilates, do yoga for recovery, and I’ve been focusing on breath hold and free diving training, so when I return, home I’m ready for some bigger waves.
On a daily basis, I wake up around 6 am to do the morning surf check for the guests, then I do either yoga, pilates or surf if the waves are good. Then we usually have surf transfers or lessons to that take us through the main portion of the day. I surf either in my lunch break, on the transfer or after work. The evenings I’m mostly resting, for the next day.
What’s some of the things you love about the resort, the people, surf etc?
I think working the “Float” team is a highlight for me. The Float team is in charge of diving, water sports and surfing, and everyone is pretty awesome. The team is super unique, coming from all different parts of the world living on this little island together. It’s nice to have a good crew to work with and in my spare time, my friends have taken me to do all the cool activities that are on offer. When I’m not surfing, I’ve been diving and done lots of wakeboarding. Getting to try different activities has definitely been an unexpected highlight.
I LOVE the surf here haha! That is the whole reason I am here… to improve my surfing in these perfect waves!
How are the waves?
INSANE. The wave out the front of the island is called Vodi and its a super fun left hander! It’s a super steep down the line wave, so you get some epic sections. When its clean the water turns into glass, and you see everything beneath you. Sometimes I can’t even tell where to do a turn because the wave just blends with the sky. The wave is also good for airs when it’s a little bit windy, which is one of the things I have been working on a lot while I’ve been here.
There’s another spot called Kasabu, which we get a boat to. It’s about 15 min from Niyama, off a local island called Kudahuvadhoo. That wave is like a wave pool. It pretty much breaks the same every wave and I feel that after surfing it so many times, I know the wave like the back of my hand. There’s a steep section at the start where you can really push into your turn and then you can come back and do a carve before the section goes a little bit fat and then you can squeeze in a roundhouse cutback. The wave steepens back up on the inside and you can either get barrelled, do about 5 more turns or go for an air.
Being the Maldives, so many, other waves but I don’t really want to bring too much attention to those! You’ll have to come experience them in person.
What some of your best times there and experiences?
I landed my first air reverse here, which I was super stoked about, it was one of my goals prior to coming here. I recently turned 20 a few days ago so that was definitely an experience!
I have met so many new people and what I’ve learnt is that surfing brings everyone together regardless of race, culture and wealth. Everyone just wants to have a good time out in the water.
Any messages you want to give family and friends back home?
I miss you all so so much. I can’t wait to see my big Brazilian family, my boyfriend, and friends when I’m back. It’s hard being apart from you guys at times, but I love you all so much and am counting down the days before we reunite :)
When are you back in Aus?
I plan to go back to home in November. Hopefully everything works out and I can make it because I miss everyone so much. I can’t wait to have some more adventures I’ve been planning for when I am back home.