Hello, we are Mike and Dena (short for Christina!)
Mike is an active and energetic person, avid Manchester United and football fan, and loves most other sports too! He loves exercise and healthy eating (except for his addiction to chocolate and fizzy pop) and he also enjoys working outdoors with plants, vegs and fruits etc!
Dena is an artistic and vibrant person, who loves faeries and mermaids and all things mystical. She likes Belly Dancing and working outdoors with plants, vegs and fruits too!
And yes we both work at the same place - an Apple orchard in Somerset, UK!! :o)
We've been to Denmark to pick Strawberries back in 2003, then New Zealand on a working holiday visa for 12 months where we picked all sorts of fruit and veg and visited some amazing places.
We've WWOOF'ed on a herb field in Somerset, UK during 2009, and then we've been back to Denmark again but this time to harvest Christmas trees in the winter of 2009 brrrr --- finally we're now working full time on an Apple orchard in Somerset, UK!
We've got plans on going back to New Zealand again as there is now another WHV that we can go on - but this time we're going to do some some WWOOF'ing to try and get to know more of the real NZ!
June 29th 2010
So, at the beginning of 2008 we had had enough of our full time jobs, and decided to go and volunteer for a while, see where it took us and make no plans what so ever. We handed our notices in to our jobs and then got out the WWOOF book of farms and wrote down a list of about 20 that sounded interesting to us. We then wrote each name down on a piece of paper, mixed up the bits of paper and threw them onto the floor and then threw a coin over our shoulders and what ever farms they landed on we had to choose. So we had 1 farm each and then it was just a toss of a coin to see which one we ended up going to. As it turns ... read more
June 28th 2010
Blimey, I had forgotten all about Travelblog and our entries on it whilst we we're travelling back in 2003-05 - how times flies when you live life! Well, where to start really, wow, lets see if my memory serves me well.... We got back from NZ in 2004 and had plans on continuing our travels, but after both me and Christina getting full time jobs things settled down and we put travel on the back burner. Around the beginning of 2006 we got fed up of the city and being settled again and decided to move to the country in the South West of England, Cornwall specifically! We both gained full time employment but again in office jobs, and yet we we're still not happy, so we decided to sell all our possessions and went WWOOF'ing ... read more
August 20th 2005
Wow, it's been 9 months since my last post, and looooads has happened since, where to start.... OK, firstly the best news, and that is we have decided to try and go to Australia again, after not going after NZ we were a bit disappointed for a few months but then gave up on going on a Working Holiday Visa as it is only 2 years until I am too old to get one (30) ... and we got on with our lives did some things and then in the last few weeks we have decided that what we want to do we can do here in the UK or over in OZ, but the difference being that we would be much happier doing it in OZ and also now that OZ have changed the WHV ... read more
December 26th 2004
Aaaaaah, what a kool Christmas day we had this year. Last year we were in NZ and we thought that was a great Christmas, sunshine, new friends from different countries, not a worry in the world whilst backpacking, but it was even better this year! I passed my driving test on Thursday this week so I had something extra to celebrate this Christmas and we made the most of it by being able to see Christina's parents in the morning and having Christmas dinner with my family! It's the first Christmas that we have been able to do that and it felt really kool being able to see both our families on Christmas Day!! Oxford is a really kool town to be in on Christmas Day. Especially when there is ice on all the college and ... read more
October 23rd 2004
So here we are back home, we've been in Oxford now for nearly 3 months. We both have got back into 'normal' life again, it was hard getting out of the backpacking mindset, you know, not caring about money, getting up late, having a real laugh etc etc, but now here we are, reality has smacked us right in the chops and we have to face it or be swallowed up by it. Well like we always do, we face things head on and 3 months later we have both got our selves full time jobs, Christina in a sport store and me in an office, both of us working towards starting some qualifications at the end of the year, me as a fitness instructor and Christina as an interior designer. We've decided not to go ... read more
October 23rd 2004
So, here we are sat back in the UK, 3 months after we left NZ after spending nearly 12 months there, i've got a tear in me eye!! ... it was such an amazing place and we met so many amazing people, we were really upset to be leaving and think about the things we experienced and the people we met all the time, we're always looking at our photo's remember what once was!! One of the reasons we liked it so much was because it was so far away from any other country that it has it's own uniqueness about it, it does take ideas from other countries but then puts a kiwi touch to it! Anyway I can't write any more as I am sooo upset about being here in the UK thinking about ... read more
March 14th 2004
So, firstly we have what can only be described as a rather interestingly named shop, not sure what to say really... Secondly we have the Spice Girls reunited, in New Zealand only!:o) Third pic is of Mike's femine side coming through, doing a bit of Maori(native New Zealanders) flax weaving. Flax grows widely around NZ, and the Maori's use it to weave all sorts of things from baskets to dress's! 4th pic is Moa the hostel cat, she has many personalities due to meeting so many people, friendly, but can be a vicious little thing if she's doesn't want to be stroked! 5th pic is of Sky Tower in Auckland, it is an amazing piece of engineering and looks pretty kool on the skyline, apparently it can with stand an earthquake of up to 6 ... read more
March 14th 2004
So here firstly we have Christina doing some kiwi fruit pruning, lovely work that it is, it can be neck, back and shoulder breaking, until you've done it for a few weeks and then you get used to it, kind of! Then secondly here we have Mike doing some Mandarine thinning, which again was lovely work in 26 degree sun, trying to avoid wasp nests and large nest of baby spider(none poisoness thankfully!:o), but all made the better for the nutty backpacker we work with! Thirdly here we have a rather thoughtfully named drink, after what has happened recently with this you would've thought they would have renamed the drink, but hey, this is New Zealand for you! The 4th picture is of Shu a Japanese backpacker, doing his fire dancing on a warm spring ... read more
March 14th 2004
So here we are back in Tauranga again. We finished Mandarine Thinning about 3 weeks ago and decided to come back to Just the Ducks Nuts in Tauranga again. We were intending to go Apple picking on the east coast in Hastings which is in Hawkes Bay, but after working in the sun in Pukenui all day we decided against it, it's supposed to be hotter in Hastings so if we just about managed in Pukenui, we'd hate to think how it would go there! So, since we've been back here we have done some Tomato picking and pruning, which was interesting to say the least, it was in a hot house, which is a green house with tempretures over 30c all day!! ... we started work at 7.30am and by 10am it would already ... read more
February 17th 2004
in Tauranga again! ...sorry mumz, fooled u with that title didn't we, haha only joking!:o) We finished Mandarine Thinning about 3 weeks ago and decided to come back to Just the Ducks Nuts in Tauranga again! We were intending to go Apple picking on the east coast in Hastings which is in Hawkes Bay, but after working in the sun in Pukenui all day we decided against it, it's supposed to be hotter in Hastings so if we just about managed in Pukenui, we'd hate to think how it would go there! So, since we've been back here we have done some Tomato picking and pruning, which was interesting to say the least, it was in a hot house, which is a green house with tempretures over 30c all day!! ... we started work at 7.30am ... read more