Work where other people go for their holidays – Sanna and Hannes made this dream of their come true. KAHAWAI Watersports is their wakeboard school, including jet ski hire and wake shop, on a peninsula near Roermond – just ten minutes over the Dutch border.
It is part of the Marina Oolderhuuske holiday park, and has its own boat mooring that is doubles as a centre for minor repairs (clearly identified by carolus's red workshop chest). They set off from here with there mainly German guests on various water sports adventures.
and, with lady Labrador Fini, moved 100 km west from Bergisch Gladbach in Germany to be with Hannes. Both Sanna and Hannes were born in Germany, and grew up with water sports - independently of each other. It was a passion that ultimately brought them together.
"At the time, I came here with some friends for the wakeboarding, and Hannes came with us. It was love at first sight," she reminisces.
Three years and much commuting later came the wedding and Sanna's decision to exchange primary school for wakeboarding school. "I have a lot to do with children here, too, which helped me to make the decision," says Sanna. She and Hannes have been teaching wakeboarding on a boat and on the 2-mast system, as well as wakesurfing (which is like wakeboarding, but without the lead) and water skiing since April. Also available: tubing, banana boat, jet ski and speed boating – fun sports that are particularly popular for company and stag events. "We really do have the most amazing experiences. Recently, one of the stags decided to be pulled along on the wakeboard in the nude," says Sanna, laughing.
As well as hiring out equipment and organising events, the two also take care of all the maintenance and repair work that needs to be done on the boat and jet ski – ideally under the open sky. Whether removing the oil filter, which needs to be changed every 100 operating hours or so, or repairs to the propeller resulting from touching the bottom: "We need to be able to rely on our tools," says Hannes. His favourite tool is the carolus ratchet box. "It's a great weight and very pleasant to use," he enthuses.
Hannes considers performing tasks with screws under time pressure between various appointments as means to an end. Which is not the case with his favourite hobby – tinkering with his mountain bike and quad. "To me, that's pure relaxation," he says. After work, he loves going out with Sanna and Fini the dog, and taking turns to pull each other along: Hannes on the wakeboard, Sanna on the wakesurf board. "I love feeling the flow. To me, that's pure freedom," she enthuses.
The two have big plans for the coming year: in the spring of 2018, they're planning to open a Wake Park with around 20 obstacles, a section of private beach, and a floating venue for events and restaurant in the neighbouring town of De Weerd. Until then, though, they want to take the boat to Spain for the winter months and give wakeboarding lessons. Sounds almost like a holiday ... almost.