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Hello ladies and gentleman,
here is my story of the summer. My name is Philipp, Im from Germany and travel through this beautiful country, like every other ordinary german around here. But maybe, my story is not that ordinary, because Im 31 jears now and catched my last chance to get this work and travel visa, to explore your country and...of course, myself, as well. My journey of the first 6 weeks in NZ took me through the Northern Island directly to Marahau, where I found my first kiwi work experience. When I arrived in Marahau, the gate to the wonderful Abel Tasman national park, my plan was, to visit a friend of mine, who I know from germany and who spended 3 weeks over chrismas with his family in his hometown. But it should also become my hometown for the following 4 month, because I was running out of money, when I passed the sign "MARAHAU" at the entrance of the town with my tiny car. Many people in germany told me about the nice work conditions in NZ and how easy it is, to get a job. So i did, what i like the most: I walked through town from door to door and asked the locals and the companies for a job, face to face.In my first try, I got in a place, where a local Couple leased tiny comfortable chalets to the tourists. Cleaning up was the challenge, but I was not fast and fuzzy enough, for the matter that its not my favourite hobby, to clean up, I guess. So, I asked at the kajak company, because I heard about that they often look for people, who wash the kajaks when they come back from their trips along the coastline of the abel tasman. Fully strike! They looked for somebody and so I joined the team of coordinators, guides, boat-fixers and many more emplyees with different tasks. They all were very friendly and welcomed me warmly. In the first days, I perfected my skills in using a hose to clean lots of boats in minimum time and to understand the special slang of the kiwi-english. The latter was supplemented by my colleague, who rised the challenge of understanding english with her UK accent. We had a lot of fun and joked about the different behabits of our nationalities. For the first time, I realized how much german I am, compared to the german stereotype that is in the imagination of other nations. The thoroughly german, that I never felt to be in my homecountry. The guides always had exiting and funny stories to tell, when they came back from their trips with people from all over the world, where they had seen seals and sailed with the wind across the rough sea. For a long time, I only listened to this stories but had never the time to expierience my own adventure out in the wild nature of the abel tasman sea. Until the day, when I joined a guided one-day-trip wit an experienced feller, who was actually the founder of the first kajak-company in marahau and, by choice, the father of my friend. when he arrived in marahau 27 years ago from germany, nobody had expected, that sea-kajaking would become so popular in that little town. Today, he is the wittiest and most professional fellow of the whole company and leads the people with charme and sense for the real exiting sights in his second home: the tasman sea. So, we were fighting together against the big waves to appeletree bay, where we had our first break. After that, we paddeled along the coastline of adele island, listening to the native birds singing, exploring dark caves and watching the seals, who were hanging out lazy in the sun. We paddeled into remote bays and had lunch at the beach. At the end, we finished this amazing sunny day with a sailing into anchorage bay and got back to marahau in high speed with the watertaxi. When I turned back to the company, I finally knew, what the guides were talking about, when they reported from their experiences. So, I spended nearly the whole summer with all that nice people, fixed the boates or helped out with driving vans and picking up boats from the beach. Their was always music in our workplace, we enjoied the leftover food together or had a beer and witty conversations or crazy, freaked out partys after work. And their was always that carefree spirit, that connected all the lovley peole, working in the company. I finished my work there end of march in an amazing dress-up party, where I was floating a last time through the awesome spirit of this summer, dressed with paddle-wings and sun-glasses, that looked like fly eyes. The farewell was hard, but I will return to Marahau one day, to light up this one-off summer in my memory again, when I see my friends and old workplace again. But what i definitely will take home with me is that free foodloose warmth spirit, that the kiwi lifestyle teached me. Its not all about earning money, its much more about spending a good time in nice company of openminded peope, who just enjoy life, like it comes. Thanks for that. This was my story. Hope, you enjoied it. Have an amazing lifetime.
Submitted by: Philipp Schulz Date submitted: 5/05/2013 5:05:27 p.m.