So it’s been a while since I’ve uploaded a blog, so let’s have a quick flashback.

Two weeks ago, Liselot and I rented a car. A red car with not as much power as we expected. Sometimes our little tomato was struggling with climbing hills. But we made it! We drove all the way to the Coromandel and it was time to discover beautiful beaches and stunning coastlines!

Because I don’t have a driver’s license, Liselot was the driver, and I was just the navigator. And that worked out well. We drove heaps and discovered almost every (bumpy) road you could find on the map. Sometimes a bit too bumpy if you ask me, but Liselot knew exactly what she was doing and in the end I am glad we did it!

We went to some ‘must see’ places like; Cathedral Cove, hot water beach & Cooks Beach. But the weather was chancing all the time and for the first time in New Zealand we saw some clouds moving over the mountains as we were driving atop of them. So we were literally in the clouds. That was really really cool!

So a few days after that we went to our next location: Waihi Beach. And from there we did day trips to: Mount Maunganui, Tauranga, Waihi, and Countdown. Countdown is a supermarket. In Waihi beach where we’d stayed, you could only find little supermarkets. Four Square or Tip Top (they’re called “Dairies”). Really expensive and sometimes they even don’t have meat, milk or other things you find in the fridge. And the next ’normal’ supermarket was 25km away from us. So a few days without a normal supermarket we were desperate for a supermarket and that was the best feeling of that day.

Though all good road trips must come an end. So after 8 days we woke up (way to early) to drive all the way back to Auckland to give back the car. We were expecting traffic jams…. but we arrived far in advance.

One more night in Auckland, and after that I was going to travel by myself. Well, I am traveling with the stray bus. A bus full of people. So not completely alone then 😉 I’ve met some really cool people on that bus on the first days and we did a lot of cool things: watching the stars, had a good barbie, first time swimming in the sea, took my first surfing lesson, discovered some good places and watching the sun go down with the whole stray family. I’ve had a good time. But the bus has a route and a schedule and most people decide to go further with that bus because they have limited time here in New Zealand. I’ve got all the time in the world. So after a few days, they left and I’ve stayed in Raglan for a couple more days.

I’ve been in New Zealand for more than a month now. A few more months to go. I really do not want to go home yet. So much more to see and capture on camera!

I didn’t capture that much on camera the last few weeks. One of the reasons is that, if you bring your camera with you everywhere, you’re not completely free to do whatever you want. For example; you can never spontaneously take a swim in the sea, because you don’t want to leave your camera behind of course. Even if you know that New Zealand is one of the safest places on earth, I just almost couldn’t blink. I wouldn’t lose sight on my camera. I was just constantly focusing on my camera. (Some might say that I have a relationship with my camera).

Yes I know… life is hard when you are on a holiday ;-). But for me, choosing between taking my camera everywhere, capturing everything or taking a swim in the sea is really hard. Last week I finally did choose for the beach life. I left my camera in the safe in my hostel and with total freedom I went to the beach. And man! That felt so good. I enjoyed the beach like no other day.

The weather was great and I decided that I would go to the beach again the following days. I even took my first surfing lesson! Really cool. I am definitely going to surf again in New Zealand. That’s for sure!

One day in Raglan, I went to the beach with a few people, and on our way back ‘yellow submarine’ from the Beatles was on the radio. We were just staring out of the window and enjoying the view. We didn’t know each other very well, but suddenly we just started to sing. ‘We all live in a yellow submarine, yellow submarine, yellow submarine’. Ultimate feeling! That was also the day that I decided to do that more often, going out without my camera. Enjoying with your eyes is different as seeing trough your lense. I like both! But I am trying to find balance.

I’ll keep you posted!