Wednesday, May 7, 2008

the (I wish I was still on) vacation blog!

So for the first time ever in my life I took 2 whole weeks off of work and traveled to a far-away land... all by myself... with no work to do, no laptop or digital cameras (ok one, but just a point and shoot) and no responsibility to anyone other than myself. I've taken little trips before and I've been outside the country all alone, but until now it's mostly been for work. I won't waste time with my feelings here or elaborate too much - I have a myspace blog if anyone's interested in that nonsense, but here is a little photo story detailing the major happenings of my transcontinental 'holiday', shot almost entirely on film for a change:

The solo-travel trip begins with a 12 hour plane ride to the land of the long white cloud, New Zealand...

Followed by a sprint from the air-bus to the 4 hour coach to Rotorua where I make my date with the geo-thermal-lake-spa-adventure-town and my first pint in a local pub...

They really do eat a lot of kebab's here, just like the guys from Flight of the Conchords! Oh yeah, and I went bungy jumping...

...and took a couple luge rides down the mountain with a beautiful view of the lake...

When I went back to Auckland, I was happy to return to a big city with it's big landmarks and simple pleasures...

I really got the sense of being on the other side of the world...

I was happy to meet up with some old friends, to make some new ones and to bond over some tasty local beer...

But nothing even came close to that 'full circle' feeling I got when all the planning and excitement culminated in a morning of free food solely for the advancement of carbohydrates, sugar and friendship at the Auckland Viaduct...

After that it was off to the most romantic little B&B in the Bay of Islands...sigh...

'Unparalleled beauty' as far as the eye could see... like heaven on earth...

With beautiful beaches filled with purple shells, brown beach-glass and green-lipped muscles...

And after another amazing breakfast and a big hug from Kahn-the-dog, we raced to the airport with only highway repairs to slow us down... lots and lots of highway repairs...

Of course, even with very little time for pit-stops, I can never turn down the chance to shoot an interesting sign...


After my trip to the southern hemisphere where it's Autumn and a day ahead in time, all I really wanted was a reminder of my roots - nothing like a 100 degree (Fahrenheit for a change!) weekend in Palm Springs to slap the Southern Cali. back into my ivory skin-tone! That's right - imported Palm Trees, barbecue and an English bull dog named Louie... I've never felt so relaxed in all my life...

Plus there was Coachella and it's bountiful beer-gardens...

Then more Louie, more of the pool, more beer, and more of Louie in the pool... he was a real good sport that lil'English bloke...

And even though all good things eventually come to an end, they've only made me see how incredibly fortunate I am to have had these experiences in my short lifetime...


I've been trying my best to take my new found "vacation mentality" back to work with me and back to my non-vacation life. It took being upside down and backwards and a day into the future (in a place where the toilet water flushes the opposite way than I'm supposedly used to!) for me to realize that it had been nine months since I had taken any real amount of time off and that I had been working pretty constantly for over a year. The thing that became the most apparent to me from this experience was that I really needed a vacation because I take myself way too seriously. But it also made me realize just how good I have it - I have great friends who I can just be myself around, co-workers who I actually missed, fresh local food that puts the rest of the world to shame, the most fantastic garden-apartment and all the time in the world to enjoy it... hopefully...

There are more FTX photos on the way so stay tuned! XO!

2 comments:

jen said...

love it. can't wait til i can experience new zeland for myself. which will be some day. :) and i think palm springs should be a more common trip in our lives now. ;)

Daniil said...

Hey,

I found this by way of Georga's blog.

If you're ever back in NZ, you should make it down to Windy Welly. It's the SF of NZ. :)

-D (formerly of LA...um...well, Claremont actually)