After a month travelling the South Island and two weeks travelling overseas in Dubai and Argentina, as well as some time in between, we wanted to reflect on what we have been learning. We have had some ups and downs, and some funny moments in between. Here’s the stand outs for the last few weeks:
- Bring your insect repellent if you are going to the west coast in New Zealand. However, if you happen to run out as soon as you get to your campsite, dishwashing detergent will do in a pinch. It will also leave you sticky and smelling like lemons, but at least the swarm of sandflies will leave you alone.
- We have different styles when it comes to travel. I like being planned, scheduled and having an itinerary. The downside of this is that I can be stressed, over planned and get upset when things don’t work. Reuben likes being relaxed, going with the flow and being spontaneous. I have just asked him what the downside of this is, and he said, “There’s no downside!” Clearly finding a balance on this is a continual work in progress!
- Don’t be lured in by the cheap deliciousness of K bars. When they rip out a filling and part of your tooth you will regret it! (and it will become the most expensive candy you have had in your life).
- We have been learning to compromise on our learning styles. At museums, Reuben loves to read everything and learn as much as he can. I like to skim and do a general look around, but get bored much more quickly. I’m learning patience and Reuben is learning to skip some things.
- Reuben needs to walk slower as every now and then I snap when I have spent too much time metres behind him as he charges ahead to our destination…this may or may not have led to a fight when I got sick of being left behind.
- I need to work on not assigning blame when things go wrong, as I can have a tendency to do this…this may or may not have led to a fight after we got off the wrong bus in the middle of Dubai and were lost.
- We need to look after our feet! Both of us have had quite a few blisters and have had to really look after ourselves.
- We need to ensure that we build in rest time – when you are travelling for a few weeks, you can go full tilt but when you are travelling for a year it’s nice to slow down and take a slower pace. We were exhausted after Dubai but have really appreciated having a full week in Buenos Aires.
- We need to plan ahead a bit and ensure that we stay at places with the internet – it is very hard to plan and book with no internet and extremely limited language skills.
- On language skills, not speaking Spanish means that travelling in Argentina is not easy! We are making extremely good use of the Google translate application on our phone.
Overall we are having an amazing time and are so happy to be on this adventure we have dreamed about for years.