Category Archives: Volunteering

Learning About Generosity in Arthur’s Pass

After we travel, it’s often the people we’ve met that we remember the most.

Mountains and meals blur over time until they’re lost in the haze of memory. Moments disappear in our minds, sometimes resurfacing years later when we hear a song or smell something on the air. Tour guides and hotel receptionists meld into one in the mind. But sometimes you meet a person that is impossible to forget.

Maybe they touch your soul or you just have such a strong connection that you feel like you’ve known the person your whole life. You can make friendships while travelling that are so fleeting, yet so powerful. Sometimes it hurts when you have to say goodbye to a person that you’ve barely even met. Continue reading Learning About Generosity in Arthur’s Pass

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A Horrific Help Exchange on the Banks Peninsula

burlington bay from above

The Banks Peninsula is a small, hilly circle of land that juts out into the sea close to Christchurch. Due to the large amount of beautiful bays and little villages, the peninsula seems to be the perfect weekend getaway for Christchurchers. For the same reason, we thought it would be a great place to base ourselves in our last week in New Zealand.

It’s close to the city, I told myself while typing out an email to a HelpX host. We’ll be able to pop into Christchurch in the day or do some sightseeing on the peninsula. That’s what I thought.

Until we found ourselves sitting in The Bloody Legend looking up on a steep road heading right into the hills. Nothing on the website said anything about this.

Continue reading A Horrific Help Exchange on the Banks Peninsula

Taking Your First Steps in Traveling Alone

dan standing in pacific crest trail meadow
Traveling alone takes balls. Big balls.

We spend our whole lives with a support group around us. For years our parents look after us, stepping in whenever we have a problem or need help.

Soon we gain friends to take over from our parents. If trouble pops up there’s always somebody to lean on. Somebody to listen, give advice, to help.

Traveling alone means giving up that support network. It means complete reliance on one person–yourself. Once you learn to depend on yourself you gain a deeper sense of who you are. You experience true independence, but taking those first steps can be hard. Continue reading Taking Your First Steps in Traveling Alone

Hiking in the Grand Canyon

Hiking to Ribbon Falls on the North Kaibab Trail

My first hike in the Grand Canyon was without a doubt one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Some may scoff at the idea, but at the time I was weak in body and mind. The hike pushed me to my physical limit and all along I had to live with the humiliation of my German friend walking along without even a change of breath. I had run-ins with lizards, mice, and almost stepped on a rattlesnake. I was pushed to the edge of exhaustion. Yet despite all of that, I’d do it again in a heartbeat. Continue reading Hiking in the Grand Canyon