UNFINISHED DOCUMENTARY, STATE OF GRACE | Mid-1970s
Interviewee: CHARLIE DANGER
A lot of surfers didn’t know about the break at Milakale. It was kind of remote in those days and the road going in was a real hot mess. You could make it with a 4×4, but I used to drop right in with the chopper and land in the open courtyard. There was a path down to the beach that was constantly getting overgrown so I had to carry a machete along with my board. It was usually worth the trouble, though.
Another benefit of being able to get above the trees was that I could see the break before I had to chop my way down to it. If the wind was makai, or toward the ocean, it would help smooth out the faces of the waves offshore and keep their lips up. There were plenty of crunchers out there—I think the bottom drops away pretty quickly—but when the wind was just right and I had the break line to myself, it was paradise, man.
As far as Milakale itself, I didn’t hang around the grounds too much. Out of necessity, I had developed a bit of a sixth sense back in ’Nam, and I had learned the hard way to pay attention to it. Whenever I dropped onto the property, I always had the weird feeling of being watched. From time to time I would do a quick recon just to make sure that no one was going to mess with the chopper, but I never saw anybody … or anything, for that matter.
All of the outbuildings that once housed the plantation workers were completely falling apart but the big house always looked to be in pretty good shape; almost like it was protected from the elements somehow. I don’t know when it was last lived in, but when Zongo made his way up there he said it was almost like the house had been waiting for him.
Keep in mind that Zongo smokes a lot of weed.