Hi, I’m Deb – here’s my story!
I have huge passion for all things travel for as long as I can remember.
When I was eight years old we went on a family holiday to Sydney and I would spend hours looking at Mum’s travel wallet with all the tickets, passports & itineraries, I felt the excitement of seeing the world even back then. I didn’t realise then that that same excitement would stay with me forever.
In my early teens, I would look up the world weather and the international departures on teletext (yes, teletext!) and dream of all the amazing places in the world I could visit. I loved visiting airports from a young age, the buzz and excitement that I felt then is still with me now.
When I left school, I tossed a coin to choose between university & travel. Obviously travel won so I saved up enough money for an airfare, got my British Passport and jetted off to the UK to meet some of my family. I still remember boarding the Cathay Pacific flight to London via Hong Kong and being so proud of myself for not crying when I said goodbye to my family. I arrived in the UK with eighty pounds to my name and hoped for the best. After a couple of months, I had a job at a local pub and moved into a flat. I was doing it, I was actually doing it. I spent an unforgettable year in the UK and made amazing lifelong memories & also went through some down times and learnt a great deal about myself. A lot of things that shape who I am today come from my time in the UK. I would often hop on a train to London and spend hours just wandering & exploring the city. Before I returned to New Zealand, I went to Ibiza as I had a job offer and got a tiny taste of Spain that I will never forget. I would love to go back! I vividly remember sitting at a lookout looking towards the island of Formentera not believing that the moment was actually happening! Unfortunately homesickness took over but that was okay, it was time to head home.
When I got home, I got to thinking about what to do next and kept thinking about Queensland, I had to visit Queensland. I got my opportunity sooner than I expected. Shortly after I won a trip through work to the Sunshine Coast to fly in a Mig 15 Jet Fighter. An absolute once in a lifetime opportunity! We got to stay at the Twin Waters Resort and had an amazing weekend exploring the Sunshine Coast. So much shopping! Around this time I had met my now husband and we spent many weekends exploring the South Island taking many weekend trips away. Life had settled down, we both had full time jobs but I couldn’t shake the feeling of wanting to visit Queensland. I didn’t want to just take a holiday and come home again, I wanted to go and see where the wind took us. So we saved hard and booked a one way ticket to the Gold Coast. We were newly engaged and ready to start a big adventure. We bought a van and spent the next month travelling and camping from the Gold Coast to Cairns. It was, without a doubt, the best road trip I have even been on!
We spent the next six months living & working in Cairns and had to quickly adjust to living life in the tropics – the crazy thunderstorms in the wet season, the bugs, the heat! But at the same time we loved the lifestyle – heading out at night and enjoying the night markets, evening strolls when it was a little cooler, eating out and of course the breathtaking coastline! We got married on the beach at Trinity Beach with only a handful of people there to witness it. It was a low-key, stress-free day which started with us sipping champagne on the balcony of our incredible honeymoon suite. If you are ever in Trinity Beach, Meridian at Trinity is a great choice if you are after a bit of luxury. The next morning we headed out to watch the sunrise and just before first light, hundreds of bats started flying over the top of us – something you don’t see every day! One of our wedding gifts was a day trip to the Great Barrier Reef.
I worked at the airport selling landscape photos. Being in the airport environment ignited that familiar buzz once again. I loved listening to all the boarding calls for the flights and often wondered about what some of these places would be like. Sometimes I would stand on the Esplanade in Cairns, see a plane fly over and I would try and guess which flight it was and where it was going. If it was around 6pm it would almost always be the flight to Gove/Darwin – I would love to experience a Darwin sunset! I met some amazing people there and they welcomed me with open arms. It was awesome.
We returned home leaving thirty degree heat and arriving into five degree cold. We quickly got back into Christchurch life, my husband got work and we found a place to live. I started thinking about what I wanted to do and I eventually decided to study towards a Travel & Tourism Diploma. I turned down a job to study Travel & Tourism because it was my passion, I was following my heart. Six months later I graduated with Distinction and had landed a job with Air New Zealand. Excitement quickly turned to a mild freak out, it was freakin’ Air New Zealand!
I jumped into the training and spent the next two and a half years working at Christchurch Airport as a Customer Service Agent. Hands down, it was a job I’ll never forget. I quickly knew that I loved the buzz of working in arrivals and departures, especially international flights! I took advantage of my staff travel privileges as soon as I could and soon enough we were travelling business class back to Cairns for a holiday.
2005 was a busy year of travels. I wanted to go back to Cairns but this time as a tourist so we could properly experience the place. We had a blast hot air ballooning over the tablelands, experiencing the Kuranda Gondola/Skyrail through the rain forest, a day trip to Fitzroy Island and of course the beaches!
We also had an awesome week in Sydney staying in the heart of the city and getting Starbucks coffee every morning before heading off exploring. We did all the touristy things and loved every second of it. In between these holidays we enjoyed many trips within New Zealand too – every time we were away exploring, I was totally immersed in the whole thing.
Over the next couple of years we lived in a few places and eventually we welcomed our two sons into the world and life naturally was all about navigating parenthood. We didn’t take many trips but when we did I still felt that same excitement. I spent a lot of time taking photos of my town and the beautiful sunsets that grace our local beaches. And just last year, ten years after my last overseas trip, I took my son to Melbourne to visit family. I cannot explain how I felt when I booked those tickets and got my son his first passport. That same feeling. That same buzz. We had an amazing few days exploring Melbourne for the first time although we really only scratched the surface! Standing at the top of the Skydeck with my nine year old son enjoying the breathtaking views is a moment neither of us will forget. Plus he was thrilled to have visited the MCG before his Dad!
I had been a stay-at-home Mum for ten years and was looking to return to work. I was starting to think about what I wanted to do again and I couldn’t seem to figure it out. I couldn’t find work for eighteen months and was starting to think I wasn’t good enough anymore. Then, what seemed like completely out of the blue, I landed a job at my local airport doing the same work as I was doing for Air New Zealand. Who would have thought, so many years out of the workplace and I manage to land right back in the industry I love! Life has a really funny way of working out. A few months later, I began work as a content writer for our local tourism website providing tourism/lifestyle content and photographs – score! So for most of this year I have been lucky enough to do two jobs I love in an industry I adore. The last piece of the puzzle for me is to establish this blog – I have a real desire to write and share photographs about places I have explored and if it leads to other opportunities then even better!
I guess we will see where the wind takes us….
From my destination to yours…