this is the story…

of how an ordinary farmer boy from the southern parts of Sweden ended up on an desolate island in Australia, renowned for it’s world famous surf breaks, crowded summers and wet & windy winters.. Some of you know this story, but most of you don’t.. I’ve been lucky enough to meet and get to know a lot of extremely awesome people. Without them, I would not be here in Australia right now. Working, surfing, snowboarding and enjoying life on a very enjoyable level.. This is my shot at letting every single one off you in on the story that I’ve been lucky enough to be apart of… Oh wait, that sounded like I’m done. Don’t you worry, its far from over yet.. But still, here we go. And I gotta warn you guys that don’t like to read, this will probably be one long story…

..I guess you could say that it all started back in february 2007, when me and my friend Nejv made a promise to each other… We were going to Whistler, BC that coming winter. No matter what! It’s safe to say that we kept that promise. We worked our asses off and made as much money as we needed, all based on Nejvs extremely advanced excel calculations containing all the different aspects and sums in the life of a skibum, to become proper skibums (ok, not proper bums, but rich bums..).

This site was born during our first week in whistler. We wanted something that could keep our friends and family updated at the same time as we wanted a memory for ourselves. Most of the pictures of our first season can be found HERE (the blog does still exist and will be revived one day)… And since then this site has been alive on and off. It’s been delivering stories and photos from me and friends from different travels all over the world.

Oh, sorry. Back to the story… Even though we got work visas, we both knew that none of us were going to work… The only thing on the agenda was to ride that snowboard and to enjoy life without worries for a period of 5 months… Ride, eat, party, sleep, repeat. And it was aA LOT of fun. So the 5 months passed by pretty quickly and I came to the conclusion that I wasn’t ready to go back just yet… For the friends I travelled over with, Hank the tank, Oreo Oscar and Nejv, life back home was waiting. School, jobs and injury-rehab, so they went home. And I moved in with new people. I had no job nor did I have any plan whatsoever. But hey, who needs one? I’m gonna go a bit deep and say that all you need is a dream. And I had mine.. I wanted to live the canadian life for a bit longer (yeah i know, it might sound a bit lame).. Or to be honest, back then, I never wanted to leave. Ever. Canada and Whistler was just too good to be true..

I wanna shout out to my friend Navid! Without you I most definitely wouldn’t be sitting here where I am today. I would never have boarded that flight to Canada by myself… Thus never getting to know the people that made it all possible. It’s too bad you couldn’t stay on for the full ride. See you soon!:)

Anyways, back to may 2008. Summer is around the corner and life’s pretty sweet. Me, Jimmy, Roy, Oscar, Jasper and Alex rode in spring conditions everyday. Still not really any thoughts about working. I mean, I still had money so why would I work? Haha. Later on just before the opening of the Bike Park, I randomly entered the cabin (where Whistler Blackcomb administrative staff holds up) and I stumbled upon an ad for a job in the bike park. The work included building and maintaining a facility full off bike ramps. WHOA I thought. That sounds pretty sweet. Build stuff, sell tickets, ride bikes, and be the MAN. I could do that!

So I asked the lady what I needed to do in order to get that job. She looked very skeptical at me and said; There’s only one spot open and a lot of people are interested. First, you need to hand in your resume before 5pm today (it was about 3pm). Then, provided that you fit the criteria, you need to go on an interview with the bike park manager mr Brian Finestone and get him to hire you. – Thats it? I said.. Said and done, I rushed down back to the village (the cabin is located up on the mountain) wrote my resume (and no, since I had no plans of working in the first place, I didn’t have one) and made it back up by 5pm.. Got an interview scheduled for the next day and then partied like it was 1999 (responsibility really shines through in whistler).

Back then, I didn’t really know anything about mountainbikes. But I did know a bit about building ramps and riding dirtbikes, so I figured that I could do it. And I knew I wanted to learn more. So somehow I got the job and it turned out that the work partially included running the facility called the Air Dome. Selling tickets, demoing the rentals, keep an eye out on the kids and to take care of the injured. The other part included a major renovation of the entire joint. I would be working along with a long lost Aussie, who had returned to Whistler, after somewhat years of trying to live the canadian life, doing this renovation at the same time as I worked as one of the two Air Dome attendants (fancy title, i know). (Drumroll…..) The aussie guys name was Chris Ramsay… !

Summer of 2008 was just one hell of a good time. It turned out that Ramsay was a pretty damn good guy. And back in the day he did his fair share of winter/summer seasons in Whistler, so he knows a lot of people there.. All of a sudden, I knew A LOT of people too. I ended up doing stuff I’d never would’ve if I wouldn’t have gotten that job. I’ve got some good stories of when we poached the Pemberton festival and saw Jay-z & Coldplay live, or when we went to the secret laketrevnadev and hit the best ropeswing of all time, or when someone almost burned down the apartment we were living in.. But I’ll spare you guys and save them for another day..

I’d still like to claim that I had one of the best jobs in the entire bike park. We got paid to build ramps for the joy of shredders of all ages. Building stuff that puts a smile on every performer of that sports face, no matter if they are 10 or 40, is a reward thats pretty hard to beat.. Apparently our job was well recognized. Ramsay got asked to build other stuff for special events in the bike park. He asked if I could come and all of a sudden we were working on projects for RedBull & Monster Energy. My summer just kept getting better and better!! I guess this is where the foundation for the Global Ramp Company was set. But that too, is another story…

Fall came around the corner, Ramsay went back to OZ and thanks to the boys I lived with, Karl & Erik, I got another job doing drywall (byggjobb/gips) in the Olympic Athletes Village in Whistler. We earned some good money and really wanted to stay in Canada. But both mine and Karls’ visas were running out, so we had to head home to Sweden.. We went back as soon as possible, took our car and drove 1900kms down to California. Where we would spend 3 months riding snowboard/skis and enjoying life a bit more. And once again I came to the revelation that I was in paradise. Not only was it as good as Whistler riding wise. It was sunny every day! Every day!! Unfortunately, Karl broke his back a month into the season, luckily he made it to a 100% recovery, but the season was over.. Even though I wasn’t the one getting hurt, it played a bit of a mindgame with my snowboarding.. Least to say, it was the scariest accident I’ve ever seen, and gotten on VIDEO in my entire life. But that too is another story… I’m just glad you’re OK buddy!!! For those of you that wonder, Karl went back to California the next year and absolutely rode the shit out of that jump… For a short while, he kept this blog alive. Then he blew his knee out. Anyways, I ended up driving our canadian car back to Whistler from Cali by myself, so I could spend another month riding spring slush before I went back to Sweden to attend my sisters wedding.

We’ll fast forward a year to the summer of 2010. I’ve finished one year in university up in a ski resort called Åre in Sweden. I had a really really good year in Åre where I met a lot of good people, and got to ride with a lot of good snowboarders… But winter was over, and once again, I had no plans.. Back and forth, I’d been thinking a lot about where I wanted to be this coming winter. Canada or USA, but I just couldn’t make up my mind… Australia was on the roster too… And I hadn’t even really started thinking about that summer, even though it was right there.. So this is probably when you start to think; Whats going on here? When will he actually get to the point..???

Thats when Ramsay, out of the blue, because he is THE MAN, sends me an email, where he asks me if I want to come work for him for a few months down under over winter (swedish summer).. I’ve always wanted to go to Australia, and all of a sudden, I got the chance to come over here, without the need of saving up a lot of money to travel for. He had a job and a room available for me. It was an offer to an adventure too good to say no to.. Said and done, about a month and a half later I was on a flight over here..

Which brings us up to today. I’ve been in Australia for about two months now and I’ve finally made up my mind about where I will be this coming winter.. I’m going back to Sweden in October. And I’ll be spending the bigger part of this winter in or around Åre, hopefully making a few trips here and there, visiting friends in the alps and riding a lot. Going back in October will make my Aussie stay about 3 months in total. And so far, It’s been the wettest and coldest winter in about 12 years… Haha. =) Despite the rain, It’s been an amazing two months and I’m sure the rest of the time will be even better! Spring is around the corner, trips will be made and friends will get a visit from Swedish Dan! For once I’ve actually got a plan ahead of me.. A very good one! And it feels awesome!

Woah. This was a long story, but its still a lot shorter than it could have been. But I’m glad you read this far, all of you probably didn’t but you who did are my heroes and I wish I could give you a treat! Not nearly all of the people that deserve mentioning has been mentioned in this text and I’m sorry for that.. My travels, both overseas and within Sweden, has given me the opportunity too meet so many good persons. And if I would try to write down all of you, this would be one long sobbing-list-of-names-thank you note, so lets not go there. But I know that You know who you are (yeah I did just write that). I miss you all! Some more than others…! ;) Thanks for reading.

check back soon. hopefully we’ll be offering some action photos of surf or whichever recreational activity thats on the schedule. or not, it will be a surprise.

fred ut & love

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