Import / Export: Dane Beales.
Quick introduction on who you are and where you began boogin’?
My name is Dane Beales, I grew up on the east coast of South Africa in a city called Durban. It’s hell humid with epic beach breaks like Cave Rock, North Beach & Umdloti (my local)
It all began when my brother threw me into the backline to get some closeouts. I forgot about the boogin for a while as I was playing rugby union until my best mate David introduced it to me again and I got hooked! From there I did local contests and did the local tour until my early twenties. It was so rad growing up like that, best bodyboard scene!
What prompted you to move countries?
It was a bit of a weird one actually, it just kinda happened haha. Basically, I quit my job back in South Africa after 3 years and decided to travel for about 8-10 months then head back… I went to Europe & worked on superyachts for a few months, then cruised around South East Asia and eventually landed up in Indonesia for 2 months. While this was all happening I met so many cool Aussie boogers and they told me to come to Australia. It just so happened that my sister was living in Australia with her Aussie partner and they convinced me to come too. Arrived and I was like this place is sick!!! From there, all is history.
Before arriving in your new country what did you think it would be like?
Well after growing up in South Africa, you would religiously watch rugby matches such as the Super Rugby and international games between SA vs Australia. I got pretty familiar with how Australia look and how the people spoke. PLUS you would hear of people visiting or emigrating to Australia and literally everyone always mentions how it’s so much like SA. I was expecting awesome beaches and epic landscapes.
Have these expectations been confirmed or altered?
My expectations were confirmed!
When I got here I realised it’s pretty much like South Africa as they were sports watching, beer drinking and BBQ loving people with different accents.
I must admit way more rules and laws than I expected but I got used to it! Everyone I met was so welcoming here hey. When I got Dbah really good, I was like wow this wave is sick!
What do you love about your new home?
I have lived on the Gold Coast the entire time I have been in Australia and I love it!
I got into drinking coffee, didn’t even know what a flat white/latte etc was until I moved here at like 26.
Great lifestyle and there always something to do, seriously. The waves get so good and boogin community are such a good passionate bunch of humans here! Joining the Gold Coast Bodyboard club helped me so much to make friends. I have got to surf most of the waves I have dreamt about and watched on the videos when I was lil grom!
What do you miss about your old home country?
I miss really big surf, my local break Umdloti would have solid surf around 6-10 ft at least 2/3 times a month. That’s rare here on the Goldie.
Talking in my really thick slang with my mates. I luckily have all my family here in Australia which is so rare. I’m just grateful to have them around me but I will never forget my roots.
Any funny cross cultural misunderstandings you’d like to share?
The funniest thing is my accent at times as it is damn flat! There is no sing-song to it. It’s just so monotone hey haha. My vowels all sound the same and I’m a native English speaker.
So basically when I try to say “Ice”, my “i” sounds like a, so it sounds like “Arse”. I used to work at a nightclub in Surfers Paradise (yeah I know), and people will give the oddest looks as they assume I’m asking them if they need some “Arse” but it’s ICE with your drink man… haha.
Key advice you would give for anyone visiting?
Get used to the word “Cunt” as it can be used for some scenarios. Don’t drive after 6 pm in the outback, those kangaroos come at your car rather quick!
Make sure you have plenty of zinc sun cream, the sun is harsh. Be ready to have some coolest and funniest conversations in country towns with some real genuine humans. Expect to get some of the best waves of your life. Some surf spots will be crowded and always will be, don’t cry over spilt milk haha.
How are the Boogin’ Community similar and different in the two countries?
Gosh, this question took me a while to answer so let’s see.
Similar as it is a good solid core community of passionate individuals who loves the sport and are happy to be involved.
Different to SA as here everyone really pushes each other in the waves, I mean surfing out at Nuggan watching endless people flying makes you want to utterly send it.
Also, I feel the SA competitions were definitely more competitive. Remember I’m 31 now so I was surfing against Iain Campbell (world champ) & Michael Ostler (SA champ) in my club contests then surfing against Jared Houston (world champ) & Sascha Specker (DK world champ) on the SABA tour. I was always praying for them not to be in my heats.
What do you hope the future holds for you?
I just completed my degree and I’m crossing my fingers for my permanent residence to be sorted in the next 6 months. That will be a huge weight off my shoulders and feel relaxed then from there just do adult things and purchase some land. Get myself “settled” and go on a few more trips overseas like Tahiti but I have a few more waves to tick off on my list here in Australia.