My next adventure … wherever the wind blows!

Kitesurfing, New Zealand, Scuba Diving, South Pacific, South Pacific Sailing — By on March 23, 2011 3:45 PM


Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails.

Explore… Dream… Discover. – Mark Twain

Westhaven marina - Auckland, NZ

My next big adventure … sailing to the South Pacific Islands – Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Cook Islands, and wherever else the wind may blow!

And joining me for this amazingly awesome adventure is Thomas, my Swiss boyfriend I met while learning to kitesurf in Lancelin, Western Australia four months ago. I have never traveled long term with a partner, but Thomas is an easy choice for a travel buddy as we want to see and do the same things throughout the world. We are both adrenaline junkies who love the sea, wind, beaches and are happiest in the sun. He is easy going guy and also lives by the motto “Why Not?”, a criteria for being able to travel with seat of her skirt girl. We know from experience that we travel well together and our paths align easily without compromise.

Thomas and his mate Stevo spent the past nine months leaving a Kitetrail across Australia and Southeast Asia. We realized after we met that we had actually been in many of the same places at the same time during our individual 4WD road trips through Western Australia. We were both shocked to learn that I had unknowingly taken pictures of Thomas and Stevo kitesurfing in Cape Range National Park during the time I was traveling with Stacy. We did not meet that day, but I did enjoy watching the cute kiter boys from afar and decided that I must learn this sport as it looks like so much fun! A month later we did finally meet Thomas was looking through my photos and said “hey that’s my kite!?!?” Once he thought about it he remembered seeing a girl taking photos of him from the beach at Cape Range. He had tried to come closer  to impress her with his tricks but she was too far upwind. We feel as if we were meant to meet and travel together as our paths continue to cross. So the kitetrail goes in different directions now as Stevo and his girlfriend Anja will take the kitetrail north along Australia’s east coast, and Thomas and I will take it wherever the wind blows!

First step, we must find a boat to take us to paradise, hence why we are in Auckland. Heaps of boat will be departing the north island of New Zealand in May headed to the South Pacific and we are hopeful that we can find a captain that will allow us to sail with him either as passengers or crew.

Before deciding on this adventure, I had also considered a very different adventure that would have began in Capetown, South Africa. Whenever I thought about traveling to Africa I felt a bit stressed while thinking of the South Pacific islands left me feeling relaxed. Africa would be much harder travels, immunizations, and would cost much more money. While exploring Africa would be an amazing experience that is on the top of my list, I felt that I need to gear up for this sort of trip … so Africa will have to wait. The South Pacific promises gorgeous islands with lazy days swaying in a hammock under coconut trees, scuba diving amongst colorful coral, and amazing kitesurfing thanks to the southeast trade winds that blow across the Pacific June-August. Also, the journey to the islands offers the possibility of making money along the way which this broke backpacker is in dire need of at the moment!

Thomas and I are now in the North Island of New Zealand after a stressful journey from Sydney to Auckland that began with a night spent in the Sydney airport. Our troubles began at 4 am during our checkin. I already knew that traveling with an extra 15 kilos of kite gear is not easy, but I also learned it is not cheap thanks to excess baggage allowance fees. We were then asked for proof of a return ticket out of the country within the three month visa allowance period. I anticipated that NZ immigration would have a problem with our one way tickets so we  asked a travel agent friend to create a fake itinerary showing a return flight out of the country. Long story short, the Quantas attendant at checkin realized we were not actually ticketed for the return flight and informed us we had to purchase a ticket prior or would not be allowed to board our flight. So we cleverly purchased two refundable tickets …

The second drama occured at the security checkpoint.  I was carrying on one of my kitebags and forgot to check the kitebar. Security deemed the bar a weapon and took it from me giving me the option of throwing it in the bin (a loss of $250) or signing a form allowing someone to pick up the bar from the airport within seven days. Thankfully, Stevo was still in Sydney and was kind enough to pick up my bar and post to me in New Zealand. Both events delayed us so much that I almost missed a second flight in one month as I raced through the airport hearing my name called over the loud speaker!

Thomas got a great introduction as to what to expect when you travel by the seat of your skirt (or with skirt) … crazy things can happen and he too must embrace the unexpected. As our flight took off beginning our adventure together he said to me with a smile … “There is never a dull moment with you Kelly.”

I am glad he is okay with this fact and I am excited to see where our spontaneous adventures will take us next!

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9 Comments

  1. Dasha says:

    So sweet, you two love bugs. Have a great trip! So jealous, but of course enormously happy for you!!!

  2. Pam says:

    We met the same way Kelly! Well, not abroad, but I have a picture of you and Aine from long before we met :). It must be good luck.

  3. Shauna says:

    WOW! I cna’t wit to read more once you get ona boat and set sail.

    Miss You!
    Shauna

  4. Lisa says:

    So glad that you and Thomas are going to be sailing! Sounds like so much fun and I feel relieved that you will have Thomas with you. Very cool that you have a picture of Thomas from before you were together. I have pictures of David and I in the same pic from when I was little. I love you and miss you!

  5. Mary says:

    I heart this entry, and I’m very excited to read about your next adventures!

  6. Kelly this is awesome! I am glad you finally wrote about Thomas, I’d seen his photo many times lately and was waiting on the details! SO happy you are happy and still traveling. You are such an inspiration!

  7. Amanda says:

    Love it! So happy for my wing sis and her Swiss bf! Enjoy all the sun!

  8. Pants says:

    dislikes this post 😉

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