Back in June 2009 I attended my first World Naked Bike Ride and this is where the seed was planted. After arriving in Hyde Park the start of the ride I was walking among the other riders who were in different stages of nakedness. I found a nice shady spot in the park next to an area where there were people getting body painted and just waited for the signal to head off.
As I stood there I noticed that one of the guys close to me had started to take his t-shirt off and whilst I didn’t initially take much notice of this as he started to lower his shorts my eye caught a glimpse of some Navy Blue Lycra Speedos and that was enough to get my attention.
After stepping out of his shorts and rolling them up ready to go into his backpack I got an eyeful of these classic cut Navy Blue Speedos which fit his tall lean body perfectly. At this stage though, I thought life couldn’t get any better, but as he rested his backpack on the cross bar of his bike he turned a little bit side on which gave me a great view of the Navy Blue Lycra stretching down from the drawstring and wrapping around his body.
As we stood there for probably another 5-10 mins with more people getting naked around us he had moved around a bit and as more and more of the back came into view the more I liked these Speedos. Across his butt in white lettering was the word “BONDI” and with those 5 letters these Speedos had gone from a perfectly fitting pair of Speedos to the focus of my attention, regardless of all of the naked bodies between us and I had to get myself a pair.
It wasn’t long until people started get ready to set off and so I stripped down then headed off in the direction everyone was heading, the guy in Bondi Speedos kept them on whilst we moved closer to the exit of the park and whilst I knew this was a Naked ride I was secretly hoping that he would keep them on for the whole ride.
When I got home that evening I spent a bit of time searching the internet trying to see if I could get myself a pair but unfortunately every search I tried I couldn’t find anything.
Fast forward to the end of 2009 and I found myself on a trip to Australia and we had a couple of days in Sydney so I thought that if I was going to be able to get these anywhere it would be at Bondi itself.
We headed down to Bondi in the morning and whilst we had planned to meet some old friends later at Bronte Beach I knew I had a little window where I could head off by myself and search the shops for my dream Bondi Speedos.
I started at the North end of the shopping strip and tried all of the stores without any luck. I headed into Bondi Surf Co. and was just looking around and towards the back of the shop I stumbled across a small rack of Speedos on and my heart started to race as I reached out and slid the hangers apart so I could see if the back of them had “Bondi” emblazoned on the back.
The first pair that I looked at were plain but as I moved along the rack a little more I struck what felt like Willy Wonka’s Gold Ticket. It was a quick search to find the right size but as I stood there holding onto the object of months of obsession, I felt so elated that I started to get very self conscious; similar to when you were a teenager going into a shop to buy your first dirty magazine or a packet of condoms.
I continued to walk around the shop for a little bit just trying to compose myself before going to the counter and paying for them. Once I got out of the store I rolled the plastic bag up and put it right to the bottom of my backpack before I headed off to Bronte beach to meet up with everyone else.
For the next couple of years they stayed in their original bag with their tags only and when I came across them I would try them on in front of the mirror before that would be put away. This was partly to do with the fact that they were one of my favorite pairs of Speedos which I wanted to keep them in pristine condition and secondly I couldn’t think of that special occassion that would warant cutting off the tags and actually wearing them.
Six years later the tags were cut off and they were packed for an incredible holiday where I had a suite and butler at my disposal for a week. They were one of the many pairs of Speedos that Joshua unpacked for me (you can read about it here). I’ve also just realised that after that trip I was enjoying wearing them so much that they also came with me as the only pair of Speedos for the week of Skiing which resulted in another blog post about them.
Since then they have been one of my go to pairs of Speedos and get thrown in my bag if I’m heading off somewhere, but they don’t get to the pool with Mike or if I’m just training. Over this last couple of trips as I have unpacked I’ve noticed that the white “eyeline” logo on the front was starting to peel off and the “BONDI” across the back was starting to crack.
Being that this was one of the reasons that I wanted to not wear them I found myself feeling quite ok with the fact that this was happening.
A couple of weeks back whilst on a Kite surfing weekend away with Mike, his fiance Bailey, Simon and his wife Lucy, I was rinsing my Bondi Speedos out under the shower after wearing under my westuits that day. While moving them around under the running water I noticed that all of the white “eyeline” logo has come off leaving just a watermark type mark on the material.
At that moment standing there under the shower I think I feel in love with my Bondi Speedos all over again because they feel like they have now earned their stripes and have a “worn” look that you just can’t buy.