Wednesday, June 11, 2014

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Wednesday, June 4, 2014


As some of you know, I took a trip of a lifetime to New Zealand in April for three weeks without Max to wander around solo in a van.  After a 13 hour flight, I took my two very full bags on public transportation when I arrived and after I was dropped off, I walked to the van rental company.  What seemed like forever, we went over the rules and regulations of the van until it was time to take the keys and start my journey.  

I drove out of the lot with hesitation since I am not familiar with driving on the left side of the road.  In fact, I missed my exit because I was afraid of making a right turn.  Eventually I followed another car and made it on the freeway going north.  I pulled off the highway before a toll freeway to a gas station to practice pumping gas (as if I have never done that before) and to pay the toll on the kiosk.  After I pumped gas, I moved the van around to the parking lot of a fast food restaurant.  I went in to grab a sandwich and when I came back to the van, all of my bags and everything I brought with me was stolen.  Just like that.  Everything.  Camera, clothes, etc was gone.  All I had left was my wallet and iPhone and luckily I grabbed my passport from my backpack and put in my purse as a last minute, "maybe I should take this with me" thought. 

I waited for police, filled a report, spent night at police station so they could fingerprint the van in the morning and then the next day... I was finally on my way, for real this time.  

I really wasn't that upset.  It was just "stuff."  The thing I was most upset about was my hand written travel journal.  I am pretty particular about clothes and can wear out an article of clothing if I like it.  Of course I packed all of my favorites and swimsuits. Ladies, you know what I mean when I say a good swimsuit is hard to find.  I bet the one you consider your favorite is a few years old because it fits just right.

I digress... Since I had my iPhone on me, I took all of my travel photos with it like I do when I travel the states and post on my Instagram account ( @alisontravels ).  It wasn't a big deal to me to use it since it's the camera I use the most these days. 

The first day on the road, I found a spot out in the country with fields of sheep (the photo shown above).  I got out of the van to take their photograph but they all scattered and ran away once one of them saw me and got spooked.  So I went back to the van and sat in it for a while to see if they would come back.  I leaned back (hiding from the sheep in the van) and took a photo from the inside and couldn't believe how beautiful it looked.  I was actually in the place where I've seen so many beautiful landscapes.  I've arrived.

From that photo, I continued on and used the passenger door window as a photo frame to all of the beautiful surroundings I came across.  My new visual travel journal would be images taken from the drivers seat of the van so I could remember what it was like and hoped that by doing so, it would give my friends and followers a sense of being there with me, along for the ride.

I also did this with the sliding door and displayed my toes to give it a human element.  

Aline Smithson wrote a nice article for her blog, Lenscratch that you can read HERE and David Carol wrote a nice piece about the sliding door views on PDN's Emerging Photographer that you can read HERE. Thank you both for sharing this series!

I hope you feel as if you took a little tour of the country with these images.  It's a beautiful country with wonderful people.  I will never forget it.


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