Confessions of the Worst Surf Guide Ever

From the latest issue, TSP97. Photos by Mick Curley

In the latest issue of The Surfer’s Path – TSP97 – you’ll find a wonderful tragi-comic story by long-time Indonesian traveller and artist, Phil Goodrich of Florida. Phil’s years of low-to-no budget surf exploration mean he’s a man with an enormous store of knowledge about Indonesian waves and the cultures that surround them. This would, you’d think, make him the perfect surf guide, and when he got offered a position at a Mentawai surf camp some years ago, he jumped at it. Instead of eeking out the pennies so he could keep up his quota perfect waves, Phil got free accommodation and the chance to spend every day hunting the best possible barrels, albeit with some stoked paying guests in tow.
But let’s just say it didn’t exactly work out. In fact, after losing the job within weeks, Phil began to realize that he was, in fact, probably the worst surf guide in the world. Hence his confessions.
Here’s a video to accompany the story, showing just why he Phil is, on paper, perfect for the job. Look at it another way and it shows why, maybe, he’s a bit too stoked and a bit too good for it, too. Either way, he knows his way through the inside of a tube and it’s a pleasure to watch.
NOTE: since his first career hiccup, Phil Goodrich has since come to terms with the requirements of guiding and now works in that role at Macaroni’s surf camp where, by all accounts, he’s truly excellent and an inspiration to the guests.

Video by Fionn Rogers

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