True Travel Tales: Seeing hookers get punched and being offered 40,000 dollars is just the beginning of these true travel tales.

Stories from the road, we’ve all got them. Whether it’s the time your dad crashed into a lake on the family trip to Disneyland, or when you got locked in a jail cell in Cabo for pissing on the street–if you’ve traveled, you’ve got a story. For this month’s travel issue, we asked some of the world’s best and most traveled surfers to regale us with their most memorable travel experiences.–C.C.

Raimana Gets Stranded, Almost

Chris Malloy saves Raimana’s aching heart with his credit card.

The one surf trip I still have in my mind is when I went to Ireland. It was so cold and windy and I had just gotten a new girlfriend who lived in Tahiti. Brad Gerlach, Bobby Martinez, Noah Johnson, Chris Malloy, Jack Johnson and I ended up in Bunduran. Every day I had to go to the shop to check to see if I got a fax from my girlfriend. If I had to go a hundred miles, I would go just to get that fax. Every day I would say, “Chris! Chris! I gotta go see if I got a fax!”

Every time I got a fax from her I would read it like ten times, you know? For example, when she wrote at the end “I love you” I

would read it like over and over! I love you, I love you, I love you (laughs). And then, at the end of the trip, I was at Heathrow airport in London. I had left my ticket from Los Angeles to Tahiti at a friend’s house in Dana Point (California), so I wouldn’t lose it in Europe. So in Heathrow they tell me, “You’re not going to be on that plane because you don’t have a return ticket from the U.S., and the immigration is going to stop you and hold you there.”

I saw everyone walking away from the ticket counter and I was so bummed. I had no credit card and was down to a super low amount of money. Then Chris Malloy came back, and said “What’s going on?” I told him, “Chris, I can’t jump on the plane because I don’t have a return ticket home from the U.S.” He asked me what I was going to do and I told him I had to wait for my ticket to be shipped over from Dana Point. The next part I’ll never forget–Chris said to me, “Here’s my credit card. I’m buying you a ticket home.”

He paid like 1,800 dollars. I’ll never forget that. Whenever he comes here to Tahiti, he’s gonna get the red carpet for that move.Raimana Van Bostolear

 

Tim Curran Hangs With The Big Dogs

Tim Curran remembers his first big surf trip like it was an out-of-body experience.

“I think the best trip I’ve ever been on so far was a trip to Tahiti with Tom Carroll and Kelly Slater. I was seventeen or eighteen–my first real photo trip and it happened to be with two of my favorite surfers of all time. Just to watch them surf those crazy waves–I didn’t know how they did it. Tom Carroll was and still is a psycho. He wasn’t even looking when he paddled for waves. He’d just put his head down and he paddle no matter if it was doubling up on the dry reef and closing out, he still takes off, pulls in, and somehow he’ll make it. Then there was Kelly, obviously he could surf, I don’t know–he’s all right. He did okay on that trip and I was proud of him.

The waves were probably like six to eight feet, and we got a lot of days. We surfed a bunch of outer reefs, rights, lefts, and a few pretty far out reef passes. Of course we surfed a couple times out at Teahupo‘o, and I was just like, “Wow, this is the heaviest wave ever.” It wasn’t even huge, but it was really intense for me.

It was such an amazing experience. We got ton of photos and Quiksilver did, basically, a whole movie on the trip.

The whole time on the trip I was really excited to go home and share all of the stories. It felt like an outer body experience. I went from being some grom who was fatal on Kelly Slater to being on a trip with him–I didn’t even feel like it was real.–Tim Curran

 

The 40,000 Dollar Offer

Kalle Karranza gets an offer he can refuse.

I was in LAX, back from a month long trip in Tahiti, ready to get things taken care of in California so I could get back home to Mexico when my favorite travel story started to unfold. I had taken a 40-dollar airport shuttle ride to the Los Angeles train station and was sitting in the waiting room with a ticket for San Diego in my hand and my boardbag as my only company. It was 11:00 p.m., and I had to wait for an hour in a big waiting room of the train station for my train to depart. I was thinking about Tahiti and the amazing trip I had just had when a beggar approached me. At least I thought it was a beggar because I had already seen a few in the couple of minutes I had been there. He was a tall, lanky, black man, dressed in an extra-large red shirt, and brown pants that had apparently been khaki when they had seen better times. 

To my surprise, the first words that he muttered weren’t “Can you spare some change?,” but instead, “Good-night, sir, I wanted to ask you for your help.” I was immediately awed not only by the question but also by his accent. At the time I already had good friends from Australia, England, and even South Africa, and neither of which accents fitted the mold he had. He introduced himself and said he came from Africa. At this point my memory fails me, but I’m tempted to say he said Sudan. He explained that he had come here to ‘country Los Angeles’ to pick up money. He said his brother had come to the U.S. a long time ago and worked there for a factory. Apparently his brother had died in an accident, so he came all the way to the U.S. to pick up money that the factory was to give the family. At this point I was thinking, ‘What could possibly be the problem? Why was he telling me all this?’ That’s when the shock came.

He put his hand in his pocket, brought out a bunch of money in a roll, and showed it to me. He said he had gotten 40,000 dollars from the factory for the death of his brother. He padded his other pocket to show me he had the other wad in the other pocket. He had his fingers calmly wrapped around a huge wad of hundreds, holding it right in front of me! I couldn’t believe it. At this point I couldn’t possibly think of what could be the problem, except his own safety considering he had supposedly 40,000 dollars in cash with him in a shady waiting room on the L.A. train station.

This is when he spoke of the favor. He told me his country was dangerous, and even more dangerous for him if he brought the money back with him. He said that if his government found him with the money, when he was arriving they would take the money away from him and possibly put him in jail because they would think was going to buy guns and ammunition. He said this was too dangerous to do, not only for him, but for his family, too. He wasn’t going to risk his or his family’s life for this money. He held my hand and put the money in it, and he asked me to give it to a Christian church. He said his plane was leaving in and hour and a half and was already late. He said that the Christian church has helped his country a lot and wanted to give this money to them. I couldn’t believe it. At this point I was thinking so many things in my head.  My mind was going at a hundred miles and hour. Was he telling the truth? Did he really get the money honestly? Was he undercover? Was someone with a hidden video camera videoing me to see if I would take the money? Even if I took the money, would the Christian church believe me, that an ordinary man in the train station gave me 40,000 dollars? Why had he approached me, of all people in the place? Why did he trust me? I thought about it for a few minutes, just in awe, and finally said no. I said “Sorry, I can’t help you. I believe you, but I don’t think anyone else would if they found me with that amount of money in cash.’ I gave him the money, shook his hand, and really truthfully wished him the best of luck. Then I walked away dragging my boardbag to the train and hopped on. I couldn’t stop thinking about that man until I fell asleep. I couldn’t believe it was real. He sounded legit, his eyes looked honest. I just couldn’t do it. I never found out if he was legit, or if he found someone to do him the favor, or if he made it back home safely. Or maybe he was just pulling my leg.  To this day I don’t know, and I don’t think I’ll ever know.–Kalle Karranza

101 Uses For A Leash With Ben Bourgeois

It makes a good luggage alarm when you’re stuck for 24 hours in a Brazilian airport.

It was like five years ago, I was on the road for a while doing a bunch of contests and then went down to Brazil for three different contests. It was just getting kind of eggy toward the end. At the last contest, I had this really good small wave board and the fin broke on the flight there. I went down to the contest and asked, “Hey, is there anyone that fixes dings down here?” The contest director said there was a guy, and he came by and grabbed my board and went to go fix it. Two or three days fly by, and I was like, ‘Shoot, I wonder if that board’s done yet?’ and the guy basically disappeared with my board. So I just borrowed a board for the first heat and lost.”

Then I was with Keith Malloy and somebody else from California–Kieren Horn, I think. They’d lost, too, so we went to the airport. We were to fly to Sao Paolo to catch our connecting flights back home. But the plane was delayed and we arrived in Sao Paolo late. We had to drag our gear from one end of the airport to the other. The airline told us, “Okay, if you guys don’t make your flight, we’ll put you up in a hotel room because it’s our fault’. I was like, “Okay, sweet.” We dragged our stuff all the way to the other end of the international part of the airport and I just missed the last flight of the night at midnight. Those guys were flying to L.A. and just made their last flight. I just wanted to get out of that country so bad–just get home. I watched those guys get on a flight and was there, solo in Sao Paolo. There was one flight a day on Delta–it leaves at 12:30 at night. I thought, “Well, at least the people will give me a hotel room at the other end.” So I dragged all my gear back to a whole other part of the airport, get down there, and no one was even there at that airline. So I was like, “What am I gonna do now?” So I just posted up. I found a little zone in the airport. The Sao Paolo airport is kind of sketchy ’cause there’re freaks and people get their stuff ripped off. So I was just like, “Shoot, I’m just gonna sleep here.” I had all my stuff and was tried to sleep right next to it. There were all these sketchy people, so I put a leash through my board bag and my regular bag, put it on my ankle and slept with my backpack on. I stayed that whole night until midnight the next day and finally got out of there.–Ben Bourgeois

 

Hookers And Al Qaeda

Cheyne Magnusson talks about his run-ins with both.

I’ve actually had two crazy things happen to me. Wcamera videoing me to see if I would take the money? Even if I took the money, would the Christian church believe me, that an ordinary man in the train station gave me 40,000 dollars? Why had he approached me, of all people in the place? Why did he trust me? I thought about it for a few minutes, just in awe, and finally said no. I said “Sorry, I can’t help you. I believe you, but I don’t think anyone else would if they found me with that amount of money in cash.’ I gave him the money, shook his hand, and really truthfully wished him the best of luck. Then I walked away dragging my boardbag to the train and hopped on. I couldn’t stop thinking about that man until I fell asleep. I couldn’t believe it was real. He sounded legit, his eyes looked honest. I just couldn’t do it. I never found out if he was legit, or if he found someone to do him the favor, or if he made it back home safely. Or maybe he was just pulling my leg.  To this day I don’t know, and I don’t think I’ll ever know.–Kalle Karranza

101 Uses For A Leash With Ben Bourgeois

It makes a good luggage alarm when you’re stuck for 24 hours in a Brazilian airport.

It was like five years ago, I was on the road for a while doing a bunch of contests and then went down to Brazil for three different contests. It was just getting kind of eggy toward the end. At the last contest, I had this really good small wave board and the fin broke on the flight there. I went down to the contest and asked, “Hey, is there anyone that fixes dings down here?” The contest director said there was a guy, and he came by and grabbed my board and went to go fix it. Two or three days fly by, and I was like, ‘Shoot, I wonder if that board’s done yet?’ and the guy basically disappeared with my board. So I just borrowed a board for the first heat and lost.”

Then I was with Keith Malloy and somebody else from California–Kieren Horn, I think. They’d lost, too, so we went to the airport. We were to fly to Sao Paolo to catch our connecting flights back home. But the plane was delayed and we arrived in Sao Paolo late. We had to drag our gear from one end of the airport to the other. The airline told us, “Okay, if you guys don’t make your flight, we’ll put you up in a hotel room because it’s our fault’. I was like, “Okay, sweet.” We dragged our stuff all the way to the other end of the international part of the airport and I just missed the last flight of the night at midnight. Those guys were flying to L.A. and just made their last flight. I just wanted to get out of that country so bad–just get home. I watched those guys get on a flight and was there, solo in Sao Paolo. There was one flight a day on Delta–it leaves at 12:30 at night. I thought, “Well, at least the people will give me a hotel room at the other end.” So I dragged all my gear back to a whole other part of the airport, get down there, and no one was even there at that airline. So I was like, “What am I gonna do now?” So I just posted up. I found a little zone in the airport. The Sao Paolo airport is kind of sketchy ’cause there’re freaks and people get their stuff ripped off. So I was just like, “Shoot, I’m just gonna sleep here.” I had all my stuff and was tried to sleep right next to it. There were all these sketchy people, so I put a leash through my board bag and my regular bag, put it on my ankle and slept with my backpack on. I stayed that whole night until midnight the next day and finally got out of there.–Ben Bourgeois

 

Hookers And Al Qaeda

Cheyne Magnusson talks about his run-ins with both.

I’ve actually had two crazy things happen to me. Well, f–ckin’, 2001, right? September 11–you know? F–ckin’, about eight days later, on the nineteenth or twentieth, I was supposed to go to Portugal and I was kinda sketched out on going, ’cause f–k, our buildings just blew up. It was me, Gabe Kling, Greg Long, and Photographer Patrick Trefz. We went to the Azores and we had to fly through New York and we saw Ground Zero–from the air you could see it–really gnarly. It wasn’t smoking still, but you could see the rubble and the buildings around it. So we get to the Azores–don’t ever go there because they suck. We were watching T.V., and they have Al Jazeera there because it’s like, part of f–ckin’ Europe or whatever. So we’re watching Al Jazeera and the f–ckin’ main guy behind Bin Laden is sitting there on the T.V. like, ‘This is a huge victory for Al Qaeda and the suicide bombings will not stop–more planes will be hijacked, more cities will fall under the wrath’ and shit. We were watching this and we were supposed to leave in like four days. I just sat in my hotel room like, “F–k this.” They were basically saying they were gonna go for Europe next–other countries that they hate. I was pretty much pissing my pants–we just started drinking at that point because there were no waves anyway. So we got on our flight to Portugal–we go to Lisbon and then I had a separate flight from Gabe. I was going back to New York and to California. I got on the flight and they pat me down, and I was so stoked for going through like five security checkpoints. I was like, “These guys won’t get shit through here.” We got on the plane, we get on the runway, we’re about to take off–the guy said we were next in line. For some reason we didn’t move for ten minutes. Then they f–ckin’ stopped our plane, made us get off–they thought there was a bomb in the cargo hold. It was f–ckin’ heavy. I was just shitting. And then they searched the whole thing with dogs and shit and all the bags–it took a couple of hours. There ended up being nothing–we got on the flight–the most terrifying flight I ever had. It was so sketchy.”

‘I should also throw in the time I saw this hooker get knocked out in Bali–pretty crazy. Daniel Jones and I were outside of the Double Six club–this guy was just wasted. We were just walking in and we see this hooker try to go in and he’s like, “No, you can’t go in.” The security guard stopped her. He’s like, “You can’t go in, you’re bad trouble.” And she started spouting off in Indonesian–some shit, you know? And then the guy threw the biggest haymaker and just connected with her face and she just dropped–it was so heavy. I just stood there going, “Holy shit, get me out of here!”–Cheyne Magnusson

Mischief And Misery

Brenden Margieson relays tales of two different trips.

I can’t remember what year it was–it might have been ’95, ’94 maybe. It was one of the first trips I did with Occy–the Maldives. I think it was for Sons Of Fun–one of those Billabong movies that I did with Jack McCoy. I’d heard what sort of character Occy was and all that sort of stuff. We didn’t get much surf on the trip. It’s not one of the craziest stories that ever happened, but one of the funniest probably. There’s no surf, so obviously the next thing you do being a surfer is you go to the bar at night. We were the only people in the whole bar–the whole restaurant. There was a karaoke machine and we were having a couple of drinks and the Maldivian barman was just kicking back in this little side room and just didn’t show any interest at all in what we were doing. After a few drinks we decided to lock the door and put a chair up under it and just helped ourselves to the bar. We thought, “Aw, wait ’til he starts knocking” and we didn’t hear anything. We just poured ourselves a bunch of free drinks. We forgot that we locked him there. We just got sidetracked and we actually got up and sang some karaoke and just had a good time about it. Everybody went, “F–k, the barman!” And then we opened it up and he was still there reading his paper–oblivious to it all. So not used to having surfers in the place.

I went to the Andaman Islands on a boat trip, and the boat we were on was actually made for the Sea of Bengal, which doesn’t get open ocean swells. They sailed it five days over to the Andaman Islands and actually got really bad weather and the boat couldn’t handle open ocean swells. We had to stay in port for five or six days in this hideous little village. The boat leaked–we were actually wet the whole time–for like five days. It was one of Luke Munro’s first-ever surf trips and one of the worst trips I’ve ever done in my life. James Catto was on the trip and every hour of the day, morning, annd night, he was just like, “F–k, I want to get out of here.” It was just the most negative, miserable trip I’ve ever been on.–Margo

 

, f–ckin’, 2001, right? September 11–you know? F–ckin’, about eight days later, on the nineteenth or twentieth, I was supposed to go to Portugal and I was kinda sketched out on going, ’cause f–k, our buildings just blew up. It was me, Gabe Kling, Greg Long, and Photographer Patrick Trefz. We went to the Azores and we had to fly through New York and we saw Ground Zero–from the air you could see it–really gnarly. It wasn’t smoking still, but you could see the rubble and the buildings around it. So we get to the Azores–don’t ever go there because they suck. We were watching T.V., and they have Al Jazeera there because it’s like, part of f–ckin’ Europe or whatever. So we’re watching Al Jazeera and the f–ckin’ main guy behind Bin Laden is sitting there on the T.V. like, ‘This is a huge victory for Al Qaeda and the suicide bombings will not stop–more planes will be hijacked, more cities will fall under the wrath’ and shit. We were watching this and we were supposed to leave in like four days. I just sat in my hotel room like, “F–k this.” They were basically saying they were gonna go for Europe next–other countries that they hate. I was pretty much pissing my pants–we just started drinking at that point because there were no waves anyway. So we got on our flight to Portugal–we go to Lisbon and then I had a separate flight from Gabe. I was going back to New York and to California. I got on the flight and they pat me down, and I was so stoked for going through like five security checkpoints. I was like, “These guys won’t get shit through here.” We got on the plane, we get on the runway, we’re about to take off–the guy said we were next in line. For some reason we didn’t move for ten minutes. Then they f–ckin’ stopped our plane, made us get off–they thought there was a bomb in the cargo hold. It was f–ckin’ heavy. I was just shitting. And then they searched the whole thing with dogs and shit and all the bags–it took a couple of hours. There ended up being nothing–we got on the flight–the most terrifying flight I ever had. It was so sketchy.”

‘I should also throw in the time I saw this hooker get knocked out in Bali–pretty crazy. Daniel Jones and I were outside of the Double Six club–this guy was just wasted. We were just walking in and we see this hooker try to go in and he’s like, “No, you can’t go in.” The security guard stopped her. He’s like, “You can’t go in, you’re bad trouble.” And she started spouting off in Indonesian–some shit, you know? And then the guy threw the biggest haymaker and just connected with her face and she just dropped–it was so heavy. I just stood there going, “Holy shit, get me out of here!”–Cheyne Magnusson

Mischief And Misery

Brenden Margieson relays tales of two different trips.

I can’t remember what year it was–it might have been ’95, ’94 maybe. It was one of the first trips I did with Occy–the Maldives. I think it was for Sons Of Fun–one of those Billabong movies that I did with Jack McCoy. I’d heard what sort of character Occy was and all that sort of stuff. We didn’t get much surf on the trip. It’s not one of the craziest stories that ever happened, but one of the funniest probably. There’s no surf, so obviously the next thing you do being a surfer is you go to the bar at night. We were the only people in the whole bar–the whole restaurant. There was a karaoke machine and we were having a couple of drinks and the Maldivian barman was just kicking back in this little side room and just didn’t show any interest at all in what we were doing. After a few drinks we decided to lock the door and put a chair up under it and just helped ourselves to the bar. We thought, “Aw, wait ’til he starts knocking” and we didn’t hear anything. We just poured ourselves a bunch of free drinks. We forgot that we locked him there. We just got sidetracked and we actually got up and sang some karaoke and just had a good time about it. Everybody went, “F–k, the barman!” And then we opened it up and he was still there reading his paper–oblivious to it all. So not used to having surfers in the place.

I went to the Andaman Islands on a boat trip, and the boat we were on was actually made for the Sea of Bengal, which doesn’t get open ocean swells. They sailed it five days over to the Andaman Islands and actually got really bad weather and the boat couldn’t handle open ocean swells. We had to stay in port for five or six days in this hideous little village. The boat leaked–we were actually wet the whole time–for like five days. It was one of Luke Munro’s first-ever surf trips and one of the worst trips I’ve ever done in my life. James Catto was on the trip and every hour of the day, morning, and night, he was just like, “F–k, I want to get out of here.” It was just the most negative, miserable trip I’ve ever been on.–Margo

 

nterest at all in what we were doing. After a few drinks we decided to lock the door and put a chair up under it and just helped ourselves to the bar. We thought, “Aw, wait ’til he starts knocking” and we didn’t hear anything. We just poured ourselves a bunch of free drinks. We forgot that we locked him there. We just got sidetracked and we actually got up and sang some karaoke and just had a good time about it. Everybody went, “F–k, the barman!” And then we opened it up and he was still there reading his paper–oblivious to it all. So not used to having surfers in the place.

I went to the Andaman Islands on a boat trip, and the boat we were on was actually made for the Sea of Bengal, which doesn’t get open ocean swells. They sailed it five days over to the Andaman Islands and actually got really bad weather and the boat couldn’t handle open ocean swells. We had to stay in port for five or six days in this hideous little village. The boat leaked–we were actually wet the whole time–for like five days. It was one of Luke Munro’s first-ever surf trips and one of the worst trips I’ve ever done in my life. James Catto was on the trip and every hour of the day, morning, and night, he was just like, “F–k, I want to get out of here.” It was just the most negative, miserable trip I’ve ever been on.–Margo