John Dicks has lived and breathed Bondi almost all his life. John moved to Waverley, just up the hill , when he was eight years old and Bondi and Bronte being the only beaches where he spent his time. By the time John bought his first fiberglass board, a Woodstock, shaped down Mascot way, he was a Bondi local and has never moved far since, now living in North Bondi – only a few steps from the ocean.
What's the day job?
I am the headmaster of Coogee Boys’ Prep School in Randwick. That’s me during the week. On the weekend, I put my vice pres. hat on for the Bondi Longboard Club. Rain, hail or shine we set up once a month for a club challenge. Even if it rains (heavily), all the guys from the club meet up at Lush and watch the waves, grab a coffee and solve the problems of the world. I also enjoy a round of golf at either Bondi or Woollahra or a Stand Up Paddle when conditions are flat.
One thing no one ever told you about parenting...
Being a parent is a full time job no matter the age of your kids, mine are now in their twenties. One thing no one told me about parenting was - don’t stress too much and don’t sweat the small stuff. However, when you do figure that out parenting is a lot more fun!
Best thing to do with your kids around Bondi?
Aside from the beach, which is a no brainer. Our family are pretty big-eaters – we always seem to be out for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Both kids can really shop and I don’t mind a bit of retail therapy, so sometimes we go for a cruise around the stores on Gould Street. Generally though it’s food and coffee.
Proudest moment as a Dad?
I’m very lucky – I have a lot of proud moments. It’s rare that I feel disappointment in my kids. There have definitely been times when I’ve questioned or not agreed with the choices they have made but, by and large, I’m extremely proud of them. I really admire their focus, determination and independence. Sometimes it pays off, sometimes it doesn’t, but they never fail to put themselves out there.
What's your Dream Father’s Day gift?
As I mentioned I’m not a bad shopper, so my kids always complain that I’m hard to buy for. I love a good Long Boarding magazine subscription. I received a set of Campbell and Hall pyjamas a year or so ago and wear them all the time – wouldn’t mind some new gear though.
Gift most likely to receive instead?
I don’t know actually, maybe they will take me out for breakfast or lunch. They know I like Kiehl’s moisturizer too – facial Fuel I think. So possibly some of that or shaving stuff. I’m just really happy to spend time with the kids no matter what.
Any words of wisdom for the Dad’s out there?
It’s quite simple really, but always be there for your kids and listen. Even when life gets busy make time to have a conversation, take them surfing, go shopping or for coffee. They grow up quickly and start their own lives and relationships – you don’t want to miss any moments.
You mentioned you guys are big-eaters, where's you place of choice for food in Bondi?
Bondi’ Best in North Bondi for a great seafood offering lunch or dinner, Macelleria fabulous for meat and three veg – great home cooking. We generally head up Hall Street to Bill’s for breakfast – it’s a crowd pleaser and you’re never disappointed with what comes out of the kitchen, coffees good too!
Speaking of Coffee...
Bru Coffee in North Bondi. Delicious coffee just down the road, couldn’t be easier.
A Corona on our balcony as the sun sets. Wine bars a generally a bit too noisy for me, ask my kids about their favourites.