Hungover Surf Shoot || Photos by Dan Marsh & Madison Jeffery || Words by Birralee Hassen

Land Photography by Dan Marsh @ride.about

Drone Photography by Madison Jeffery @madisonjeffery

I woke with no alarm. Flustered and still definitely drunk, the day was already starting to warm up and the sun was already too high in the sky for comfort. Shit, I thought, did I just sleep in past my own surf shoot? 

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The day prior had been a large one. A friends Christmas lunch carried on well into the night, and saw events unfolding that included the loss of my phone, jacket and most definitely a few brain cells. I had hitchhiked home and fallen straight to sleep, no care whatsoever for what future responsibilities awaited me.

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I scrambled awake, opened my laptop and checked the time, phew, half an hour until I had arranged to meet my friends on the beach. I hope I organised well enough that no one is trying to call me; I thought as I chucked some Solsoya into the van and started driving. 

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I found the first of my friends at Wategos and explained my situation to them. Laughs of course ensued, at the hopelessness of my attempt at this whole being an adult thing. “I don’t even know where Dan is with his camera – and I can’t even call him!” “He’s parked further down there” Anrielle helped, “But I just saw a girl walking down to the beach with a drone, you should go and ask her if she’ll take some shots for you”.

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I scrambled down the stairs and made my way towards the girl, bent over a drone on the beach and fiddling with the remote control. “Hi!” I started, “This is kind of random but is there any way you’d be interested in taking some surf shots for us this morning?” She looked up at me, head tilted to one side and flashing a grin, and I realised that we’d actually met previously. 

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A couple of weeks earlier she had overhead a conversation I was having in the Pass car park on the phone to my friend Kate, who’s birthday it was, complaining about the lack of places to leave a vehicle. The Pass car park is mayhem at the best of times, this day was sunny, the surf was epic and the date was nearly at December 1st. “Tell your friend she can take my park,” she had offered, “Especially if it’s her birthday”. We chatted while we waited for Kate to come back down the hill, and when she left I knew that I’d see her again. 

So there she was, perfectly timed on Wategos beach with her drone. We found Dan with his camera, the girls all found each other and me, and we got dressed and made our way to the beach. We took a couple of shots on the sand, but couldn’t help being pulled towards the ocean, like a wave washing back out to sea. 

Sometimes you just need the ocean. While food, water and sleep are all great, the only thing that can really wash away the post party plague is submerging yourself in saltwater. A hung-over gaggle of girls, we made our way into the ocean, waves and laughs shared as we debriefed on the alcohol filled antics from the night before.

It was one of those mornings when somehow everything just worked out the way it was supposed to. The water was clear, the surf was small but fun, and the vibes were high. A random even found my phone, and after looking in my contacts found a mutual friend, who delivered it to my house later that day. Ahhhh life.

Birralee Hassen