I moved countries again. It’s been a bit of a theme the last few years. A mixture of chasing adventure and failing to find a foothold, mostly the former, I think. Australia to New Zealand however is hardly a significant change. The countries have some significant differences. New Zealand has respected and celebrated its indigenous culture better than any country on earth, whereas Australia has done very poorly at best. Australia is huge, rugged and dangerous, New Zealand is green rolling hills...at least where I live. New Zealand absolutely worships rugby, Australia thinks it’s ok. I could go on, but basically the common ground, like the incredible beauty of both nation, is much much larger than the differences.
I didn’t come here to work or for adventure like my previous abodes. I’m here this time to study full time for at least a year. That basically means cutting your earnings by 90%, cutting your lifestyle by the same and burying your head in research and writing a thesis. Time is now much more precious. It took me four months to find time to start writing about these journeys again.
So I can’t adventure like I used to, I simply can’t afford it now. But the itch must be scratched. I’m learning to find mini adventures within a few hours drive, not half a days plane ride away. It means driving str home, not finding a nice hotel and a steakhouse for dinner. A few times I’ve even had to choose between food and petrol. Petrol wins, I want to get home.
Finding places like Kaiate Waterfalls more than makes up for the lack of BIG adventure. I visited this place four times in two weeks. I felt like I was in a movie set, some kind of fairy tale or Tolkien epic. Every time I left, I thought “was that place really like that or did I just dream it.”
Kaiate Falls reminded me that adventure doesn’t have to be big expensive events in far off places. It doesn’t have to be exotic destinations. It can be really close and just as incredible.