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Duct tape surfing, Elliston, South Australia
Pascale: I see in cities, people are a lot more isolated, everybody’s doing their own thing and suddenly I came somewhere where there was space, and Elliston was, like, the real thing. I had a new car that had power steering ... and basically I just over-corrected. I was with a friend talking, and saw I was on the other side of the road and just went, 'oops' and I got ejected out of the car, fell on some rocks and straight away I could tell my friend, 'ah, I can’t move my legs'. The doctor said ... T4 ... complete paraplegia. I think an accident like this affects everything. Sitting in the chair is the easy bit, you know. Then it's all the incontinence aspect, the skin aspect, learn to have your balance, you just gotta relearn to live a different way. It was pretty hard at the beginning … to get back. I had six months in Adelaide in rehab and I was quite good then, but going back to Elliston was difficult because suddenly there were all these things that I love doing that I couldn’t do any more. I just used to watch my sons a lot, like, from the house. There’s a little way across that I used to go there so I could still see them or you know drive the car as close as I could and watch them surf. I've always been fascinated by it.
Tyron: When we first came up with the idea, you know, I’ve always thought I wonder if you can go tandem on this, if two can surf on the same board or wondered if you can do all these other things. Well, I reckon I could duct tape you to my back and surf. I don’t see why I couldn’t.
Pascale: And we tried just here and there and on the deck floor and he just put me on his back and he could get up, so it just started from there.
Tyron: The challenge of getting her on my back and I was, like, if I can do what I normally do with an extra 40 kilos that would be a pretty good challenge, really.
Pascale: I remember just looking up, and just the colour, the sound. It was like being part of everything, being part of the water and I can’t even find words to explain that ...
Tyron: I’m good friends with Tom and Morgan, her sons, and I’d be like, 'I’m gonna go for a surf' and Pascale would be like, 'Can I come? Can you see?' Yeah, yeah you can see, so she’d just hassle me every time I wanted to go for a surf and I’d be just driving by myself. Why not? Jump in. She’ll put herself through anything to be near the ocean.
Pascale: Because I can’t ... I can’t see my body, I feel like if I’m moving, ’cause I’ve been taped right there at the same height, I can picture it’s me.
Tyron: It would be the ultimate thing for Pascale, really. Something that her sons have put a lot of time and effort into, that she gets a close-up look at what’s happening.
Pascale: I'm taking a different aspect of it kind of every time now and I’m starting to get it a little bit more too, and just about realising when are we going to wipe out ... (she laughs)
Tyron: Yeah, it’s changed my life in a way, I think. I mean, I didn’t really think about it too much until people started saying comments about how much this inspired them so …
Pascale: It’s really shown me that you can still have a dream and things are possible.
Tyron: I’ve always seen Pascale as just being someone who wants to do anything. She’s not really the average paraplegic person, that’s for sure.
Pascale: You see a wave on a video but … if we go to different waves and meet different people and tell them what you can do and what they can do. I mean it might not be their dream, but for them to follow their own dream and to concentrate on the positive in life.
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