But let me roll back the clock for just a moment.
Life in New Zealand was a lot of fun for me, my favourite being the mountains and volcanoes of-course. So I explored the country from top to bottom, coast to coast. But it can't be all fun and games, there was also my first job. I was lucky to get an apprenticeship with AWA a radio communications company with a large operation near Wellington and a smaller operation in Auckland where I transferred to. One day I spied a job in the Cook Islands. I couldn't resist and applied for it. A few weeks later I was living in Pacific paradise. The volcanic cone rises dramatically out of the ocean, no other Islands for 140 miles. Although one Island in particular begs the question. 'Why would you ever want to leave?' If you have some one special in your life, then take them to Aitutaki.
While I was in Raratonga, I was fortunate to discover some old xerox copies of the trails that lead up all the major peaks and ridges. I rushed off to get a machete and I was away like a robbers dog in the mountains, slashing the paths back to life. I made friends, carried out electronic repairs and night announced on the radio station, KCFM. Just before my departure I was even leading locals along the trails that they had long forgotten. I loved that step away from familiar shores. The local airport beckoned with the scent of adventure. I island hopped back to New Zealand via Samoa and then booked a one way ticket to Europe. Thus the summer cycling New Zealand while I waited for the seasons to change in in the Northern Hemisphere.