I wish I had discovered this blog years ago. I did the mass email update for my previous adventures (United States and Europe) and now have no online documentation to share with fellow travelers.
To the chagrin of some friends and family wanderlust has struck again. I managed to stay focused for nearly a year and a half in a job related to my college education, however the desire to travel has grown strong again and can no longer be suppressed.
I have secured a 12 month Visa for New Zealand and hope to document this adventure for posterity, or at least the life of the TravelBlog.
Enjoy and safe travels.
February 25th 2013
Note: more photos appear at the bottom of this page The Kepler Track (61 kilometres encompasses the best of everything - from the lakeside beech forests and alpine tops, to hearing kiwi at Irisburn Hut. Travelling along mountain tops for 12 kilometres, the Kepler Track is an alpine adventure with stunning panoramas. The walk took us from the shores of Lake Te Anau to spend a night high above the clouds in an alpine tussock land. The track then traverses the ridge lines of the Kepler Mountains, down to beautiful Lake Manapouri, before leading us back through the peaceful beech forest, right back to where we started in Te Anau! M and K were back in NZ to celebrate their engagement and had the great idea of organising a 4 day tramp on one of NZ's ... read more
February 12th 2013
Volunteered to collect waste along the Airport's shoreline. This ment getting a chance to work on the far side of the runway, ride a hover craft, explore restricted shoreline, do good for the environment (specifically marine life) and enjoy a BBQ with friends afterwards (while playing with the firetruck and plane spotting). If you get a chance to do this I recommend it.... read more
February 3rd 2013
Everyother year Waiheke puts on a sculpture walk known as "Headland's Sculpture on the Gulf". I got to meet up with two people that I met in Laos - Chris and Emily - and do the tour again this year. This was my third time doing the event (I've not missed one since first arriving in NZ). I've posted a few photos of most the pieces. Personally I thought a number of works/ideas have been done before over the last few years,so in my mind was probably the least interesting installation I'd been to. I thought the most interesting and inspiring pieces were: "Sheep Track" by Gina Ferguson and Gregor Kregar's "Pavilion Structure". I must say that I thought the organisers did a great job this year swapping the start / end points of the walk. ... read more
January 2nd 2013
2 Jan: I don’t know if it was general tiredness from the lack of sleep over the last few action packed days or if it was an actual illness, but I woke up feeling queasy, tired and sore. Unfortunately I had an early morning flight to Vientiane that I had to make if I was going to keep to schedule. I struggled to keep away during the flight and started taking antibiotics as I figured they couldn’t hurt. I arrived in Vientiane with a bit of a fever and hot/cold sweets. I arrived at my accommodation and just crashed, waking up a few hours later that afternoon. While I didn’t feel any better I thought it might do me good to get out – I hoped to find an air conditioned cinema or mall where I ... read more
January 1st 2013
1 Jan 2013: New Year’s Sunrise New Year for me is one of the more momentous days in a year and 2013 will qualify in my top five list of memorable New Year’s days. The decision to forego much needed sleep to make a pilgrimage of sorts to a witness the first sunrise of the year and approximatly the 900th New Year’s sunrise over Angkor Wat – will be a memory that stays with me for a lifetime (and superstitiously I’m hoping it acted as a harbinger of good things for 2013). What has that temple complex witnessed over those 900 New Year’s (yes I know they weren’t using the Gregorian calendar)? I would love to know, but I’ll have to settle on only knowing what the sun, sky and temple looked like that particular morning. ... read more
December 31st 2012
31 Dec: New Year’s Eve Day I woke up looking forward to taking a break from temple ruins and instead spent the day exploring present day Siem Reap. As the tourists, tuk tuk drivers and tour busses flowed out of town for a day of heat, dust and perspiration I meandered through the backstreets and narrow lanes from my accommodation to Pub Street and the central part of town. By morning Seim Reap central is unlike any other small town centre I’ve been to. Prior to 12noon there are only a few locals about and even fewer tourist faces to be seen. The Pub street and Market precinct is setup to cater to the tourist trying to escape the midday heat and sun (or rain in the rainy season) and later indulge in assorted pleasures at ... read more
December 30th 2012
30 Dec:Further to my post earlier today (if you haven't seen it you can find it here:www.travelblog.org) here are a few videos from the first person scrambling through the temples and temple ruins. Even videos don't do these ruins justice, so you'll just need to trek to Cambodia yourself to take it all in. Angkor Wat The following video was taken about 8am in the morning at the entrance to Angkor Wat proper (you can see the steps up to the causeway about halfway through the video). The number of tourists, busses, cars, tuk tuks trebled in the two hours that I was such that it was nearly impossible to find my driver as there were hundreds of people and vehicles milling around. Don’t let the number of tourists discourage you from going, just ensure that ... read more
December 30th 2012
30 Dec: Touring Angkor, Day Two (note: There are a number of photos (84) associated with this entry. Believe me when I say this is just a fraction of the photos taken that day – e.g. you’re getting off easy, and getting only the highlights. Some have commentary immediately below the image, which will give a bit of an explanation of what you are looking at). In an attempt to avoid the crush of tourists seen yesterday, we set out for Angkor Wat proper at 7:30am. While we still found our first stop of the day full of tourists it was significantly fewer than the number we’d seen at the site the day before – should you make this journey I recommend you start your morning as early as possible so that you can enjoy the ... read more
December 29th 2012
Further to my post earlier today (if you haven't seen it you can find it here : www.travelblog.org ) here are a few videos from the first take scrambling through the ruins. Even videos don't do these ruins justice, so you'll just need to trek to Cambodia yourself to take it all in. In addition to my blog there is a well organised stash of information on Angkor (including maps, photos, videos, information etc...) at the UNESCO website. It would be great to get feedback on what you've seen so far of my trip. Including if you'd suggest more or less comentary, photos and or videos. Thanks ... read more
December 29th 2012
29 Dec: Touring Angkor, Day One (note: There are a number of photos (111) associated with this entry. Believe me when I say this is just a fraction of the photos taken that day – e.g. you’re getting off easy, and getting only the highlights. Most have commentary immediately below the image, which will give a bit of an explanation of what you are looking at). I'll make a seperate post with a few videos next. Flashback to winter of 1996 (Vancouver WA); I was nearing the halfway point for my senior year of high school and the second year of my college coursework. A misty drizzle hung in the chilly air as I dashed from Clark College’s carpark to the Fine Art’s building and the art history lecture hall. I didn’t yet know that the ... read more