My Work Life Balance

On Saturday morning I was on a hiking route in the far south of New Zealand with freezing fingers wrapped around a carbon hiking pole. Last night I was in a cocktail dress with gold and silver fingers wrapped around a crystal champas glass (cheers Josie and Lewis!). In between those 36 hours I finished off a five day family hike in the rain, hitched a quick lift with a couple from Vancouver, paid $5 for the first shower in five days and was given fresh towels and products, put too much effort into writing out a colorful sign for Queenstown and got a lift before I even got to the hitch spot, ate a salad at the casino, met an awesome Aussie 40 year old named James who invited me to the Qantas club in my hiking gear, consumed lots of gratis blue cheese and Shiraz, flew to Melbourne for 9 hours to stroll the Saturday night streetlife of Fitzroy and reunite with my darling brother after ten months, slept a bit in my sleeping bag inside the airport, flew to Sydney, coincided flights with my sister from the other hemisphere for a morning of catching up and reminiscing, used lots of airport samples, got my hair done, dress on and came to the wedding of a long time friend. I don’t know if you’re supposed to have lots of money to live in the fast lane but it definitely feels like that’s what life is like these days! 

Two thousand and sixteen has been cruisy as Pacific Sun. The one before was manic and foreign and wild but this one is oh so smooth. Fresh out of studies and keen to go cycle the world with $20 a day made Mum grow more wrinkles in January. Making the doe at the start of the year to afford my new deadly treadly, living at home for the first time in years. Cycling Tassie with nine amazing people in month two. Coming home to an email that put a big, rainbow spanner in the works, I cancelled an internship in Kenya to take a job with this dream sounding company that takes young people (and me!) on inspirational, developmental, experiential trips off the beaten track. Put that in my pocket for a little bit later and went hiking in Wilsons Prom with the family. Melbourne to Adelaide on the bike with my fave sidekick in the world, we camped out the back of an eighty year old woman’s place with peacocks and she drove over on her four wheeler to give us baskets of Easter eggs. Getting my light rigid license and learning to drive a manual took up most of theatres levels in the fourth, and I was more adrenaline fuelled doing my final driving test than cycling Albanian highways with trucks trying to overtake you on a single lane road. It all worked and I went off to cycle NZ’s South Island for the fifth, living healthily on connections. Spending a week in a retreat meeting my new workmates and learning about this new lifestyle I had just signed up to to finish off May. Over to cairns for the sixth to do a scuba course and embark on the first Pacific Discovery trip down the east coast. In the first weeks I broke down on the beach and cried at the wonders of the world. What sort of job inspires you like this? I have found my place. A week break and back up the coast again with another amazing group of young people from England, Spain and the States. Off to Beijing and then Mongolia with my favourite hiking companion Bec Rourke. We got some horses for a couple of days and galloped across the steppe with hair flying in the wind. Goodbye Bec and off to the Great Wall for an explore in month nine. I came home and met my new co-instructor for the next trip over bacon and eggs in Brisbane. We traveled the east coast of Australia and chunks and highlights of New Zealand for a volunteer and adventure packed trip with twelve amazing humans. That spanned months 9, 10 and 11. Mum and dad came over to NZ for some hiking and gelato for a fortnight. I am home now for a few days; a wedding, an early Christmas, a festival. Then back to NZ for month twelve to cycle the north island with a fantastic new friend from the last big trip to complete the cycling circuit of a beautiful country. Two thousand and sixteen will be all topped off with a real deal massage on the beach in Fiji. 


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