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2014 Roundup

2014 Roundup

GENERAL
I had another big year in 2014! I managed to complete six items from my bucket list. Two of these were completed, with my brother, when he came for a holiday in September. I also achieved the most difficult one so far: #84 Fly an Airplane. In case you have missed any of the stories or lessons from my bucket list adventures in 2014, here is a roundup. #10 Buy My Own Car Completed on 10th February in New Plymouth, New Zealand [#10 Lesson] Strive for Freedom #21 Ride in a Helicopter Completed on 14th March in New Plymouth, New Zealand [#21 Lesson] Ask for Help #93 Take an IQ Test Completed on 6th August in New Plymouth, New Zealand [#93 Lesson] Room for Improvement #65 Go Whitewater Rafting Completed…
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Why I Changed #16 Ride an Elephant

Why I Changed #16 Ride an Elephant

GENERAL
At the time of publishing my bucket list, in 2010, riding an elephant in Thailand was sure to be found in every bucket list article on the internet. This is how I found it. I will admit that I was ignorant. I did not know what was happening behind the scenes at these elephant parks in Thailand. I think that can be said for most of the world as well. In the early 2010’s this topic started popping up more and more. While a handful of travelers had known before this time, it was starting to reach critical mass. People were talking about it, sharing the sad truth on social media and lobbying to have this type of behavior stopped. In 2014, Intrepid Travel announced that they were no longer…
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[#62 Lesson] Share Your Dreams With Others

[#62 Lesson] Share Your Dreams With Others

BUCKET LIST, LESSON
This life lesson relates to my previous blog #62 Fly in a Hot Air Balloon. When I told Tegan that the coolest gift she could get me would be to help me cross something off my bucket list, she got to work. She studied my list and found an activity that we could do together and was close to New Plymouth. It was definitely the best present she could have given me, and I was so happy that she did that for me. This taught me the importance of sharing your dreams with others. Since starting my bucket list, I have noticed the natural tendency of people to want to help out. Whenever I share my bucket list with people, it is very common for them to scan the list…
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#62 Fly in a Hot Air Balloon

#62 Fly in a Hot Air Balloon

BUCKET LIST, TRAVEL
This bucket list item was completed on 7th February 2015 in Hamilton, New Zealand. It all started with, “What do you want for Christmas?”. I began dating Tegan at the start of 2014 and when Christmas time rolled around, she was nervous about what to get me. I’m not really that fussy with gifts and generally any type of adventure paraphernalia will make me happy. She persisted, but I am not that good at choosing my own gifts, on the spot. I ended up telling her that the coolest gift she could get me would be to help me cross something off my bucket list. She never asked me again, and I never really thought about it until we started exchanging gifts. Her present was simple, it was an envelope.…
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[#84 Lesson] Sacrifices are Required to Achieve Dreams

[#84 Lesson] Sacrifices are Required to Achieve Dreams

BUCKET LIST, LESSON
This life lesson relates to my previous blog post #84 Fly an Airplane. Anything truly worth doing in life, is worth sacrificing something else to make it happen. This is the most important lesson I have learned from my bucket list journeys. That 14-month period was one of the most challenging times in my life. There was simply not enough time in the day or energy in my body to complete all the things that I desired. As a result, something had to give. Sacrifices had to be made. I realised this within the first few months, around the time of my first solo. I had to look at my life and ask, what can wait? What don’t I need right now? As much as I loved to go out…
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#84 Fly an Airplane

#84 Fly an Airplane

BUCKET LIST
This bucket list item was completed on 9th November 2014 in Hawera, New Zealand. In July 2014, I had a lazy weekend with not much planned, so I called my Irish friend, John, to see if he had found any waves. He told me that he wasn’t out hunting for waves because he was actually doing some flying lessons. I was amazed! I interrogated him, “What? Are you serious? Where can you do that?” He happily gave me all the details. There is a small town called Hawera, located about one hour south of New Plymouth. Hawera has a very active aeroclub. The aerodrome land is leased out to a local farmer to grow crops, which subsidises the flying rates, making them very cheap. When John told me the details,…
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[#41 Lesson] Sometimes You Need Help

[#41 Lesson] Sometimes You Need Help

BUCKET LIST, LESSON
This life lesson relates to my previous blog post #41 Go on a Blob. There are some similarities with this lesson and [#21 Lesson] Ask for Help. In that blog I talked about never being too proud to admit when you could use some help. The key is to realise this and act on it by asking others for help. Your friends and family will always be there to help, as long as you ask. This adventure taught me that sometimes you NEED help. This is not just a matter of getting over your independence and asking for a helping hand. Sometimes there will be physical limitations keeping you from doing something by yourself. In my case it was going on a blob. In the middle summer, the adventure park…
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#41 Go on a Blob

#41 Go on a Blob

BUCKET LIST, TRAVEL
This bucket list item was completed on 21st September 2014 in Tauranga, New Zealand. This post follows on from my previous post, #65 Go Whitewater Rafting, which describes the start of my travels with my brother during his trip to New Zealand. After leaving Rotorua we kept moving north and drove straight to the Coromandel Peninsula, stopping at a hostel near Hahei. We stayed at the hostel for two nights and used it as our home base while we explored the surrounding area. Cathedral Cove One morning, after breakfast, we took off to discover Hot Water Beach. The beach gets its name from a natural underground hot spring located directly below the sand. Hot water, up to 65 °C, bubbles up through the sand that is exposed during the two…
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Harnessing the Power of Time Zones

Harnessing the Power of Time Zones

GENERAL
I have always found travel logistics very fun to figure out. Flights, hotels, tours and transfers are all just pieces of an intricate puzzle that must be constructed in a logical manner. And I love puzzles. I rarely use travel agents, because I enjoy constructing my own trips. Building my trips from the ground up is a way for me to use my creative side. The most creative travel idea that I have ever come up with, came to me just as I was falling asleep one night at the start of 2019. An idea so good, that I leapt out of bed, in a mad panic to locate my phone or a notepad, in the dark. I made the note and went back to bed, excited for morning, when…
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[#65 Lesson] Variety in Adventure

[#65 Lesson] Variety in Adventure

BUCKET LIST, LESSON
This life lesson relates to my previous blog post #65 Go Whitewater Rafting. When I crossed #65 off my list, it was the first time I had ever been whitewater rafting. The only other time was last year, with my mum, along the Grand Canyon. Both were whitewater rafting tours, but they were vastly different. The Kaituna River experience was short, only 50 minutes long, but it was packed with Grade 5 rapids and a huge 7 metre waterfall. The Grand Canyon was a 4‑day adventure with up to 8 hours on the river each day. We only tackled Grade 3 & 4 rapids on this trip and the scenery was the total opposite of the New Zealand bush along the Kaituna. Kaituna River The thing is, both were amazing…
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