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BIG BOAT LIFE & Diving Into The Surf

We’re living on a big sailboat in Fiji with a captain who’s obsessed with surfing…and he’s a bit of a legend.  We, on the other hand, are not surfers.  Aside from a couple of attempts on a longboard while on vacation, neither of us grew up near an ocean.  Our experience with real waves has only been over the last four years, and its always been from the deck of a sailboat.

Mark Paarman however was born and raised on the coast of South Africa. He and his five brothers are very well known surfing legends.  His oldest brother Donald was a surf prodigy and became pro at the age of 14 and by 1970 was named international surfer of the year.  So, when I say Mark is obsessed with surfing, I mean he eats, sleeps and breathes for a perfect barrel.

Surfing the best waves in the world has been a lifelong dream for Mark.  So, while the pandemic may have him separated from his beloved wife and family…he couldn’t be happier about being “stuck” at Cloudbreak. Not only is it the most famous break in Fiji, but its also one of the seven surf wonders of the world.

As for us, this presents a unique opportunity.  Jason has always had huge respect for big waves and surf photographers. (And any form of nature photography that involves risk.) He’s a bit of a daredevil and as luck would have it, we’re not only surrounded by some insanely good surfers, but two of our crewmates are pro underwater and surf photographers!

This week was all about learning to be in and below the waves. Next week is learning how to ride them!

Stay tuned!

 

🏄‍♂️Lia & Stu Instagram: @liaandstu 

Malia and Stuart have quickly become some of our best friends here in Fiji (right up there with the Neal family!).  If we didn’t know better, I would swear we were related. 😉 Both Stu and Malia are chock-full of good energy, positivity, and encouragement.  It’s easy to see why they have quickly become Fiji’s favorite photographers.

Should you find yourself in Fiji one day, booking a photo session with these guys would be at the top of my recommendation list.  It is a huge adventure with two beautiful souls!

 

⛵MILLENNIUM IS FOR SALE!

If this hunk of steel is your dream expedition boat, check out the full listing here:
multihullcompany.com/boat-details/?catid=7356331

 

🙏THANK YOU!

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🎥CAMERA GEAR USED TO FILM THIS VIDEO📷

See All Of Our Photo & Video Gear here: gonewiththewynns.com/photo-video-gear

 

🎶MUSIC IN THIS VIDEO:

From Artlist & You can get 2 Months FREE with this link: https://bit.ly/artlist-GWTW
Artists – Luna Keller, Low Light & Ian Post

Hello there! I honestly don’t know what to say, so I am going to tell you a bunch of random facts instead. I'm a fish eating vegetarian who hates spiders and loves snakes. I almost never took vacations growing up. I wanted to be Pippi Longstocking (still do). I misspell about every other word I write and still struggle with grammar. I love splurging on a good high tea (which is really hard to find these days). And whatever you do, don’t tell me I can’t do something, because then I'll HAVE to do it!

Comments (40)

  • YDion

    Incredible images (as usual); thanks for sharing.
    You are an inspiration.

    reply
  • Pam McClure

    Oh Lordy but that was gorgeous and exhilarating!

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  • Mary

    Wow!! That was pretty incredible! I can’t wait to hear all about it!

    Such beauty under the waves. I’ve never seen the water shot from underneath. Really a great video!

    Great on the music Nikki, you nailed it!

    reply
  • Beth

    Holy heck the music in this video is timed so perfect! Especially the tune with Nicki, the song with the words about undertow. That was great. How do you find all of the songs? Must of the time I really enjoy the background music. I know, I’m the music nerd who doesn’t know anything about surfing but just thoroughly enjoys the video and the music.
    Thank you once again for sharing your adventures.

    reply
    • Happy to Share Beth and thank you for the kind comment. You can always find the artists listed at the bottom of the post, just above the comment section.

      reply
  • xrehash

    Thanks for such a great episode. I am impressed with the attitude you two are showing. Keep up the good work.
    By the way, you have me completely hooked on Undertow by Nick Kingswell. The music on this episode was so on point, pulled me right in.

    reply
    • Yea, I loved that tune too. What a cool song and perfect for this story…it took me a few hours to find this one but it was worth the search. 👍🏻

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  • Peter

    Jason great shots! I just bought a camera my self, started videoing my little adventure. Placed the camera near the toe rail, walked back 6 feet then turned around. Well all I saw was my dog Schooner in the place of the camera looking at me tail waging. Yes camera went over board taking shots of the bottom of the boat. LOL.

    reply
    • Audrey

      I hope you don’t mind, but I chuckled bc That’s hilarious. Dogs… Sweet sweet Dogs.

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    • HA, yep gotta love pets and their destructive photo-bombs!

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  • Alan Solomon

    Great footage. I had to watch this video a couple of times as I wanted to see Mark surf more. I saw Mark surfing earlier in this video. I wish I could have seen him surfing more.
    Great water shots. You both were having great fun. That ocean floor seems to have a lot of coral as opposed to a sandy bottom. I could not really tell but the coral did not seem too colorful. I did see a bit of green but mostly grey and black coral areas.
    Sometimes, it is difficult to understand what you are saying when you have the masks on. After this video, I now realize how capable Mark’s boat is for many activities and adventures. I think you said earlier that 12 people can sleep onboard comfortably?
    Sending airwaves of good vibes to reach Curiosity soon.
    All the Best, Safe and Well.

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    • Curious Minion

      More surfing next time so stay tuned!
      Curious Minion

      reply
  • William J Jones

    So just gearing up to do a seires in Puget Sound and taking your advise on what you have is the best gear today getting a gopro 8 black and have a nikon we shall see if I can scrap some vid and get it up this month. You guys are amazing and positive love it!

    reply
    • Good luck! Filming and editing a story together is a great challenge most people either love or hate 😱 Don’t get too frustrated in the beginning, it can be a steep learning curve.

      reply
  • Linda Jones

    Another piece of action videography that is breathtaking! You two are fish in the water. Boy, you just bounce through accomplishments like it’s a piece of cake. Way to go for it! Most people take many years to tackle stuff like that. Music and video are great too! Glad to see you happy!

    reply
  • Kay Tennant

    Wow,how cool! Great job Jason. Hey ask Mark if he knows as guy named Bo Beck ? I believe he was a world champion surfer in the seventies. Him and his wife (Barbra , i think was her name ) were friends of my family when we lived in Costa Rica. They retired there ,had cattle farms. Always had great stories of the “old days “ 😀

    reply
    • Oh man, we’ll have to ask Mark. I know he and his wife loved Costa Rica when they sailed through.

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  • Dave

    Wow, pure exotic. What a dream of a place. I really liked the part without music, just the peaceful wind and the waves. So fortunate, hope to visit one day myself.

    reply
  • Martine

    Wow!!!! One of my favorite videos of yours. Quite the quick learner. Awesome shots. What is the water temp there????

    reply
    • hmmm, the water is warm enough you don’t need a wet suit, but if you’re in for more than 2 hours the chill really sets in. Maybe it’s in the low-80’s?

      reply
  • Norman Frenk

    Another wonderful video!

    reply
  • Amy

    What an awesome experience for you! Thanks for sharing!

    reply
  • DEBORAH KERR

    LOVE THIS!! I almost didn’t watch this one!! So glad I did!! I was holding my breath too as you dove under the surface! I’m 59 yo but 18 yo in my head! I would do that swim in a heartbeat (not the surfing). That’s what I do on beach vacations, ride the wave in underwater! I don’t recall seeing Mark surfing in this video?? If yes, what section so I can re-watch please…… Awesome pictures and video Jason!! Thanks for sharing – I LOVED this 💙⛵️🌊🏝⚓️

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    • DEBORAH KERR

      Oh wait, just found Mark at 8:27 – wow!! Wish I could surf too!!

      reply
    • Curious Minion

      He’s in there several times in a white t-shirt & black vest (life vest maybe?). You can see him at 8:35 and I know he’s also in the later part – just look for the black vest again.
      Curious Minion

      reply
  • Ed Grant

    Outstanding posting kids and man what underwater shots!!! Thanks so much for sharing this adventure on the Millenium and its’ wonderful Captain!

    reply
  • Jamie

    Seriously you two!
    What a life you’ve created for yourselves. My heart is full watching you two live such wonderful adventures.
    Not taking the paved road in life is often difficult and many people will tell you not to take the risk of forging your own path. You have shown that it can be done and how rewarding it can truly be.

    Thank you

    reply
  • Tev

    Wow. Some excellent shots Jason. I’ve always wanted to see below the surface of the waves and you’ve shown it. Loved it and you were indeed blessed to have the experience of the photographer to guide you. God does work in mysterious ways indeed. Looking forward to next weeks video.

    reply
  • bill domb

    Curious why no snorkels.

    Some great shots!!

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    • Curious Minion

      My guess is that if you get tumbled like Jason did in that last wave it’ll twist & break the little silicone holder & bye-bye snorkel!
      Curious Minion

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    • Yep, a snorkel will just get in the way for shooting in the surf…at least that’s what the pros told us 😊

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  • Wylie Elson

    Throwback Sunday (here in NM). That was fun! Glad we met! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmThhKTTVdI

    reply
  • Wylie Elson

    You two continue to impress. Glad you have gotten freed from quarantine and are having some adventures. I can see the life force returning to your faces. Soon, soon, you will be reunited with your vessel. Keep lovin’ life! Do you remember any of the Thai cooking we learned together from Chef Chris?

    reply
    • Hey Wylie, we think of that meal often. What a great experience in Taos with Chris. The wine, the food the salsa, oh yum!

      reply
  • Lourdes Valentin

    Just read this e-mail. Looking forward to watching your episode. Keep going. Being Covid free is a blessing no matter the circumstances. Be free of the Virus for ever. Have fun. Maybe your boat can be air lifted to you. Love, Lou Valentin

    reply
  • Emma

    Stunningly beautiful. I will definitely be watching this video more than once! Thank you, Nikki & Jason for sharing.

    A fan, Emma

    reply
  • OjaiLynda

    Simply. Amazing! What an excellent opportunity for everyone, all around! With all the stars in alignment, you came together as a community, and shared some pretty awesome time together. Congratulations, J, you nailed the ocean photography….BEAUTIFULLY! ps – I trust Cap’n Mark made it through the spicy food ok?

    reply
    • Ha, Mark did survive the spice…but I must point out he added the peppers after we warned him 🤣

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  • Dianne & Larry

    Jason, how do you keep the “drips” (water droplets) off lens when in water? Great photos!

    reply
    • I think the lens has a coating on it that’s been working well, but I also will sometimes lick the lens or use something like rain-x.

      reply

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