Friday, 8 June 2012

A blast from my skateboarding past: A letter from Essjay

I still can't locate a photo of my original skateboard I had when I was a kid, and am beginning to fear that one may not exist. I did however come across a letter I got from Essjay's skateshop in Truro, Cornwall, from February 1990 (When I was 12 years old). I remember there had been talk of a family holiday to Cornwall that summer and I decided to do some research and find out where I could skate while I was there. At this stage in Ireland there was absolutely no public skateparks and I'd never even seen a real life half pipe. I remember being excited at the prospect of seeing, and skating, in a real skatepark. In the pre-internet days I was a prolific letter writer (and I've kept all the replies!) and I can only imagine that I got the address for Essjay's out of a copy of Trasher magazine. God knows what I wrote, but I remember being thrilled to get a reply and an Airwalk sticker (which I still have intact!!) off the man himself along with a letter telling me that they stocked lots of skate stuff and that there was a nice ramp in Perranporth... a free bowl at St Newlyn East... and a bowl at Holywell bay. Unfortunately that family holiday to Cornwall never happened and I never got to visit Essjay's or skate the bowl at Holywell Bay.  Who knows how my skating might have developed if I had, instead by the following summer I think I had given up on the skateboarding. Coincidentally in my recent job with Podium Distribution I ended up working with the UK sales rep who covers Cornwall and guess what? Essjay's shop, now called SJ Skate Store, is still there! I still haven't been to Cornwall, so now that I've started skating again, 22 years later, it might be a good time to drop in on Essjay and have a chat!

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