What have I done in December? I…
- finished my job in Opotiki on 6th December 2018
- traveled in the north
- took a ferry to the south island
- started my Au Pair job in Nelson where I celebrated Christmas and New year
What have I learned?
- It is necessary to have a backpacker job when you want to stay longer in New Zealand.
- Just because one place is good it does not mean that another place can’t be better.
- Do not stop to go for your own dream. Going as far away from home as you possibly can is worth every penny.
- Do not take cacoa powder and pepper with you in the car. I had an exoplosion. 😀
- Check the weather before you enter a dangerous area. In New Zealand there is sometimes Tsunami danger but it depends where you want to go.
- I learned how to save money. For example, it is cheaper to pay for a shower in a swimming bath and to go to a free camp ground than to pay for a normal camp ground where showers are included. Sometimes, you can also take public showers or you can have a shower in the rainforest underneath a waterfall.
- I started to drive more carefully than I already did because of animals crossing my “street”.
- Go to your camp ground before it gets dark
- Take people who want to hitch-hike always with you when they are in life danger
- Do not wait too long to see one place. If the weather is too bad you should move on after a couple of days.
- I also became more patient as I could have gone two days earlier to the south island. In order to change the time of your ferry you have to pay 30 dollars. I didn’t do that because I take enough time for New Zealand.
- how to take a ferry alone. ( It is the cheapest option at night)
- I also learned how to deal with children that are younger than the children I normally take care of. One girl is 7 years old but I normally accompany children between 10-14 years.
- how to overcome the fear to jump and just fly
- do other people a favour they will appreciate it
What have I experienced?
- It is not so hard for me anymore to leave a good place because I know that there are so many wonderful places in New Zealand that still need to be discovered urgently. For instance, I had also a bit fear to leave my hometown because I know that it is a good place. I do not have fear anymore to go on. Instead I feel joy. I recognize that I feel home and at ease at several places just because I have courage to leave good places.
- Today I decided to do the eastcape from the north island,went to the lighthouse and I stay with some other travelers near the lighthouse for this night Yes, I moved on alone because I enjoy to have time for myself(I’ll meet some of the others from the working hostel later on again). I think it is not possible to be farer away from home than I am right now. It is a moment of real self-fulfillment. Pure liberty was always my goal and I attained it. I can go to a place whenever I want. I can leave the place whenever I want. I can choose to stay one more night. I do not have to stay one single night. I am flexible. I do not have time pressure because I am away from home for a long time. It is calm and not a lot of traffic. There are not a lot of people. The distance is endless here and you can look so far. There are not many roads in New Zealand so the orientation is easy and I don’t really need maps anymore. I can sing as loud as I want in my car and no one can hear me. I can listen my favourite music as loud as I want. I can’t annoy anyone because I travel alone and no one annoys me anymore. I have a lot of space in my car because I do not need to share it. I can go to bed when I am tired and I can stand up as early as I want. I have no signal( there are always people who know where I am) with my phone and I am not nervous. It is a realese for me not to be available.This day I ended up in Gisborne and traveled along the whole coast and I also visited the nature reservation. If you are patient enough you can see wales, dolphins, penguins or seals. Driving 150km per day or a bit more is okay. Everything else is at this moment unnecessary stress. I ever dreamed of discovering the rainfoerest and today I did it. In Te Urewera is peaceful, silent, green and idyllic and desterted. There are so many different plants growing and there are so many different animals. In this national park is also a Great Wlak of New Zealand. The Great Walks go along the most beautiful parts of New Zealand. There are also various waterfalls.Lots of animals are crossing the street. In one day a goat and a hedgehog crossed my street. I saw 3 or 4 raptors and also cows and horses crossed my street quite often. At the end of the day hundreds of sheeps crossed my street and I had to stop with my car. At least the sign of “wandering stock next 64km” was not fake. Well, I ended up laughing loudly, got out of the car and enjoyed this moment which is typical for New Zealand. Gravel roads are sometimes damn shit. I mean I needed 5-6 hours for less than 150km. I could just drive 30km/h not faster because there are too many curves and it is also slippery.I drove to Rotorua and stayed on a camping ground. In Rotorua I visited everything I could that was for free. Rotorua is until now one of my favourite places in New Zeaand. I met two girls from my flight again which was completely by accident. Like I already mentioned in my post on Instagram almost everything costs money. But some hot streams , lakes and hot springs were for free which I really liked. I stayed again at another camp ground.Moving on to Taupo was easy. From the south of Rotorua you just have to drive 50km. The street was finally easy to drive. This day I visited a hot water beach and the Huka Falls, the lake and then I stayed on a free camp ground with so many other backpackers(250 or even more)
I still had to organize several things like checking emails, getting my visa card, doing some calls. Actually, I wanted to stay at Five Mile Bay in Taupo that night but the campground was just for self-contained vehicles. My car is not self-contained so I had to move on. Well, I ended up on a campground quite lately and I woke the owner up again who was already in pyjama.
The weather is not good every day. Therefore, I could not do the hike in Tongariro National park. I could just go for a run. I would have loved to do that and I waited for good weather another day but the weather was still bad. In addition, the forecast for the next days was even worse. The Tongariro national park is among the highlights of the north island. This day I rescued a life of a girl from the United States who was still hiking during a thunderstorm. This was the first time I picked someone off who wanted to hitch-hike.
So I went to New Plymouth and stayed in a cheap hostel. And I had a bed. A real bed, power next to my bed and wifi in my room. I realized that I haven’t slept in a bed for more than two months. It’s such a luxury to have a bed. Sleeping in a car is a good option, in case you need to safe money. However, in Zew Zealand I often train at the beach because I do not have that option at home. I am still happy to receive a plan for my training every week. After I visited Mount Taranaki, I drove to Whanganui and made a stop at the beach. Then, I made my way to Palmerston North where I had a photoshooting with a professional photographer. I applied for that shooting and I got the job and I was soo happy. I would have never thought that I could get such a job because it’s just me Carla a normal girl.A day later I also spent time in Levin and then I got to Wellington where I took a night ferry to Picton. From Picton I moved to Nelson where I am right now. My first impression of the south island is that you can look even farer and that the mountains are even higher and that the vegetation is even closer.
Au Pair in Nelson
I really like the place where I am currently staying. They have three children named Keian, Meilan and Chloe. The boys are 11 and 13 and the girl is 7 years old. The parents do not live together anymore and the mom got a new job where she can’t take that much holiday over Christmas. Threfore, I am here. I just have to be there for the children. I have to help in the garden, cleaning dishes, doing laundry… It is not a lot that I have to do. Wwoofing is not really working for me. I think I already said that It is rather helping a bit for plenty of free time, free vegan food and free accommodation. But I really like to do that. We all celebrated Christmas together and I am still very grateful that they take me over Christmas and New Year. However, people in New Zealand celebrate Christmas in the (early) morning on 25th December. My family just celebrated that day because they emigrated from England 15 years ago. Therefore, their families still live in England. The father and the mother decided to go on a world journey. They traveled longtime in Asia and worked 1 1/2 years in Australia because they were running out of money. Then, they came to New Zealand and stayed here.
4. Activities During the time I am in Nelson
- Discovering the city
- skydive in Abel Tasman
- celebrating Christmas at the beach on 24.12.2018 with friends from Opotiki
- meeting friends in the city of Nelson
- doing a part of the Abel Taman Great Walk with a friend
- swimming and jumping into the river
- celebrating New Year
In the last three weeks I learned a lot about life and even more how it feels to travel alone. I like it to travel alone and to meet friends that I met here after a couple of weeks again. Now, I am used to my own kind of traveling. I’ve seen now a lot in the north and I’m excited to explore the second half of the country. Skydive was definitely the best until now but it is very very expensive. I could write a whole entry just about my skydive experience. Due to social media it is also very easy nowadays to meet people again even tough you travel on your own. We all left Opotiki but almost everyone from Opotiki is now between Wellington, Picton, Nelson, Blenheim and Abel Tasman.
I hope you had a great Christmas and that you will have an unforgettable New Year 2019!