Road trip – 3600 km – 42 days – Kia Ora!
Did you enjoy your holiday? Christmas, New Year’s Eve? Was it snowy? I’m lying on the beach; the sun’s shining intensively right now. It’s about 27 degrees Celsius, the hottest day, but it feels much hotter.
I have been enjoying the last few days of our summer vacation. I arrived in Timaru yesterday after travelling on my own for 42 days around the North Island.
Why did I travel on my own?
Travelling alone allowed me to do whatever I wanted without limitations through co-travellers. Also, I was able to focus on strengthening my English skills. If you have German peers around you, what do you think: which language are you going to speak most of the time? Besides that, it allowed me to face challenges on my own and to believe in myself. I felt unbelievably proud after every accomplished challenge. Furthermore, being on your own benefits if you want to build a solid and resilient mindset and reflect on your life. You can think, for example, about what you really what in life, which people are important to you, what weaknesses you have and what you want to do after your volunteer programme.
Was travelling alone tricky for me?
During the first few days, it was a special feeling not to be surrounded by 130 students the entire time or at least with colleagues. I felt lonely, and my mind needed to adapt because there were fewer distractions. And in the first three weeks, the fear of dying somewhere and somehow during this trip popped up. After three weeks, I learned how to deal with that and use my daily affirmations to calm down. Moreover, talking to other travellers helped me a lot. Ultimately, this fear was gone, and I enjoyed every second. Nonetheless, I’m happy to be back in Timaru and grateful for everything I have here: warm water, electricity, an internet connection, people I trust and know, a bed, a coffee, and a fridge, among others. You’ll learn to appreciate your luxurious life after six weeks of camping.
How did I travel, and where did I sleep?
New Zealand has a less developed public transport network, and you’ll barely find trains and buses in remote areas. For this reason, I decided to buy a car I could also sleep in. The sleeping area of my car (Opel Vectra 2002) could have been larger, so I often woke up two to three times a night. I slept in designated public areas with toilets or campsites as you can’t sleep in a usual car everywhere. Further, I stayed in hostels such as in Auckland for New Year’s Eve.
What did I eat?
Oats, pasta with a tomato sauce, pasta with a tomato onion sauce, oats with fruits, avocado-tuna sandwich, pasta with a cheese sauce… As you can see, my meals were mostly the same every day because it’s difficult to cool groceries, and the food costs are higher than in Germany. One kilogram of fresh standard tomatoes costs 6 euros, and even kiwi fruits are not cheaper. I used my lovely gas cooker to boil water and heat food.
What did I do during my road trip?
I was relaxing, relaxing and relaxing because I had a lot of time. So, I could spend two days here and three days there. I didn’t have much stress – at least most of the time because if you have an old car, it can be funny. That was one mindset challenge to stay calm and relaxed even under uncertain circumstances.
Mostly, I was one with nature. I hiked and saw many breathtaking places in Aotearoa, like waterfalls, beaches, subtropical forests, lakes and coastal walks. Unfortunately, there was a rainy period for about seven days so that I didn’t want to do something outside. Besides that, I read eight books in these six weeks – mainly about self-development and mindset building. My favourite book I have ever read about self-development is “The Code of the Extraordinary Mind” by Vishen Lakhiani. Please, you need to read it. Nevertheless, I also paid for things like watching the new Avatar movie in a cinema in Wellington, experiencing the Weta Workshop, where props for The Lord of The Rings were made many years ago, and swimming with dolphins. For New Year’s Eve, I stayed in Auckland to see the Sky Tower’s fireworks from the harbour and go to the only real gay club in New Zealand.
During my time in the North Island, I met many people from around the world – from the USA, France and the Netherlands to South Korea, Easter Island, South Africa, and Singapore. By the way, New Zealand is like Germany’s island Mallorca. You’ll find Germans in every corner here.
My next article will be about the sphere of mindsets and what I have learned in this regard. Any questions? Contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org