Frother of the Month – Charlotte ConnellName: Charlotte (Chachi) Connell
Occupation: Communications Manager at Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Local Break: Bondi, Blueys Beach, The Cliff in Newcastle
Board types: A Sam Egan 6’0”, a 5’11” quad fish, an 1980s MR replica 6’4” twin fin and a 9’4” longboard
Goofy or Natural: Goofy (in every sense of the word)
Who are you?
I’m Chachi, Char Char, Charlie and Charlotte, originally from Newcastle.
What brought you to the Eastern Suburbs?
I was volunteering on a rural island in Vanuatu (that had no surf) for an AusAid organisation, and after 12 months there I landed an amazing job with MSC. After almost a year of remote-island living with no surf, I needed to be around people and waves.
How long ago did you start surfing?
After about 12 months of mucking around on my dad’s old board, my parents bought me my first custom-made Sam Egan stick when I was 16. My dad taught me how to surf and took me surfing almost every morning after that.
You seem to have quite a quiver; are you a surfboard collector?
You can never have too many. I’m really loving beefy fish boards in Bondi, as well as taking the log out occasionally.
What are your top two favourite surfing spots?
Blueys Beach, in the north corner on a nor-east swell, is my happy place. There are always dolphins out ready to have a play and we have a family house on the beach, so there’s no need to drive anywhere. And Rio Nexpa in Mexico – we were surfing brown cappuccino coloured river-mouth waves, but they were the most ridiculously long and fun lefts ever.
How many times per week do you manage to get out for a surf?
I try to get a surf in each morning and at lunchtime over at Wanda near the office. I often have late night conference calls so I’m allowed a long lunchbreak. In summer I also try to squeeze in a paddle in the evenings.
Do you complement surfing with any other sports?
I do some mixed martial arts stuff and boxing with TNT Training in the mornings before I go for a paddle, and I try to do some yoga each week. If the surf’s flat I’ll go ocean swimming at lunchtime around Shark Island. I’m really uncoordinated and stupendously clumsy so team ball sports were never my strong point.
Do you usually surf on your own or do you get out there with friends?
You never surf on your own in Bondi. I’ve met such a great crew of people through One Wave and just chatting out in the line-up.
Describe the perfect surf trip?
Warm water, long lefts and good company.
Where is your next holiday destination?
I’m heading over to Bali in October for a surfing holiday with my dad and the whole family. He has a fairly aggressive form of prostate cancer and it’s spreading through his bones, so we’re going surfing while we still can. Please get regular health checks everyone.
Is surfing is your number one passion?
I do really love surfing. I’m not very good at it, but it brings me so much pleasure. Surfing truly is a panacea for bad head spaces. I’m also really passionate about my job. I really do believe that my organisation is having a positive impact on the world’s oceans. We’re empowering people to be part of the solution. By choosing MSC eco-labelled seafood you can help encourage fisheries to be more sustainable and ensure our oceans are teeming with life.
Any last words?
Go get a health check and choose sustainable seafood!