This Is The Best 13-Year-Old Surfer In The World
Bathymertically blessed with A-frame tubes and an air section to boot, Lakey Peak had long resided on my surfing bucket list. That’s why two dog-decades ago, all the way back in 2015, I visited Lakey’s on my first Indonesian sojourn. Even beyond the surf, it was a fascinating experience.
For instance, the local taxi hustle is a noteworthy spectacle.
When you arrive at Bima Airport, a taxi man will pick you up and drive you the three hours to Lakey Peak, at which point he’ll drop you off at his employer’s homestay. While the locals won’t force you to stay there, they make it quite clear that it would be in your best interest to do so.
Then, when your trip is over and you’re ready to head back to the airport, you must do so in the same taxi that picked you up in Bima.
So, say while you were there, you met a few other traveling surfers and decided to hitch a ride back to the airport with them. While this tactic would save money, reduce environmental impact, and facilitate camaraderie, it is not allowed by the Lakey Peak Taxi Board. Despite the ample room in your friends’ taxi and the fact that you’d be all alone in yours, you must return by the same way that you came. This, of course, is not revealed until after you take the initial taxi ride.
I discovered these rules were immutable, to the point that non-compliant taxis have (reportedly) been chased down by their rivals and forced to hand over the AWOL clients. Also, every driver in town knows to whom which surfers belong. It’s a fascinating system. Uniquely anarchic and orderous all at once.
Anywho, during my stay and between learning about the bizarre taxi practices, I took a keen interest in the local supergrom out at Lakey’s, Bronson Meydi. With a Hurley sticker on the nose of his trusty 4’6″, the then-11-year-old was out there doing video game shit on the inside section.
Sitting halfway down the right, Bronson would pick up the visitors’ scraps and throw backflip attempt after backflip attempt on the wave’s shallow end section (the same piece of reef that ate Jeremy Flores’ face that one time).
He was sticking them out the back. It was incredible.
Now under the tutelage of Indonesia’s first pro surfer, Rizal Tanjung, the 13-year-old Bronson is surfing on a world class level. With the air and barrel abilities shown above and a teenage growth spurt imminent, Bronson could become the first Indonesian CTer in just a few years’ time.
If there’s a better Under-15 in the world right now, we certainly don’t know him.
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