AN IMESSAGE CONVERSATION WITH DION AGIUS

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You’ve probably heard about the “Cult of Freedom”.

After releasing some of the most memorable full length surf videos of the past decade, Globe has recently been focusing themselves on a new series of short films, showcasing their team chasing waves and good times around the world. Whilst the first episode was focused on the blue waters of Australia and the second being a full Taj Burrow part (which was filmed on a single trip…), the latest installment of the series takes us to New Zealand, in the glorious company of sirs Dion Agius, Nate Tyler and Creed McTaggart. Despite the boys having to dodge rain and wind shooting a slingshot for the majority of the trip, they ended up stumbling upon a few out of the way spots that delivered really fun surf in locations…

And when coincidentally finding ourselves texting D and New Zealand being pretty much as far as you can go from our native European shores, we took the chance to ask him a few questions about his misadventures, and things quickly got very weird…

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Dion, you alive?

Just about…

How did the trip to New Zealand come about?

Joe put everything together for the new Cult of Freedom film. 

He’s been wanting to go for ages and we spoke to our buddy Rambo who lives there. The forecast looked fun so we jumped with Nate Tyler and Creed McTaggart.

NZ is about as far away from us here in Europe as you can go – how would you describe the scenery/culture there to our European friends?

Some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and the people are awesome. The area we were in looked very similar to Paris, and had hints of Berlin thrown in. 

Some of it looks pretty tropical and some of it looks rugged like Ireland? Looks like a crazy mix… 

Yeah it’s pretty insane. Feels pretty otherworldly there. And the South Island is even crazier than the zone we were in.

Did you go to a specific area? We didn't see Raglan, or other famous spots in the film. Did you stay away from those on purpose? 

I’m not sure we can name the location because I want to go back someday. I can tell you it’s on the West Coast of the North Island. And it’s a big drive from Auckland. And then you have to take a local fishing boat for 4 hours across orca-infested waters. Then you have to swim for the last 45 minutes and body surf up a river. 

Isn’t a river body surf just the most glorious way of arriving somewhere? What are the locals like at these remote spots?

Super gnarly. We kept getting yelled at and people kept shouting at us, “Go home white boys”, but then Creed befriended all the locals. They took us in and cooked us traditional food and told us scientist’s stories off the mountain that overshadowed the break.  

The five best things about New Zealand?

Scenery. People. Waves. Kiwi birds. No snakes.

And the five worst? 

So many windy-ass roads. Other than that, no bad things really. 

Was your dad on the trip? 

Yep, he came along for the ride. Was epic to have him there. But he got mad at me for smoking weed.  

Any difficulties along the road? We’ve heard things got pretty wet... 

There was so much rain that we actually had to sail out of NZ to get home. All the roads and airports were flooded and there were orca whales in the street.  

What did you guys get up to on the rainy days? Did Joe make you guys get weird again on Sambuca like on the Aus trip?

Rambo made us watch The Greasy Strangler. And Grady made us watch The Witch. Look it up. Joe likes to make origami in his spare time so we just watched him make some, and Creed does a bit of sewing, so we watched him do that.  

How different is it filming with Joe compared to other filmmakers?

He’s the best. Working with him is so rad. He always makes the trips so much fun and buys a lot of wine for everyone and cooks us incredible pasta and then the end results he weaves from the trips are always pretty rad. 

Any wild stories from the road? 

 Yeah we got shot at a few times in the line up. That was about it. And someone torched our car one day. And Creed got kidnapped. 

Get charged by any cows?

Nate actually rode a cow one day to the surf. It had a board rack on the side and was the local mode of transport. 

Last one…we’ve heard you’re coming to deepest darkest Europe for another one of these snake tours? Can you tell us more about it yet? 

I’m hoping to. I hope it’s going to get dark. And weird.

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We’re now a few weeks after this Imessage conversation was transcribed, and things got dark and weird indeed, with the Lacertilia Tour marching through Europe as we speak... If you haven’t caught the train yet, it’s not too late as we’ll be conducting the last stop of the tour tonight in ROME. More info here

And if by any chance you haven’t yet watched “The New Zealand Part”, here’s where you should spend the next 10 minutes of your time.

Video by Joe G for GLOBE, photos by Rambo Estrada.