A Dream Away

Day Four officially on the job, and I feel like I’m adjusting a lot better than I initially thought I would (perhaps my fortune cookie was correct? Haha)

So it’s Thursday – we’ve spent the first two days getting adjusted, and going over Wildlife First Aid training (which I passed! Yipee!)

That was pretty intense – America is a very different country as far as culture goes, but when it comes to hiking, and all the animals/plants/potential hazards; it’s amazing how safe NZ is in comparison. Sure, in New Zealand you can drown, get lost, starve, catch hypothermia etc etc… but in America (well, in Massachusetts at least) we have to learn about how to deal with poisonous spiders, snakes, bears, wicked weather conditions… it’s a little more hectic, I think! Also, when performing first aid here, you don’t just risk losing a patient, you also risk getting sued if you fuck up. And by “fuck up”, I mean even treating someone without first gaining 100% consent every step of the way. Not that I could ever imagine myself not gaining consent, but it appears to be as pedantic as me saying “oh! Are you choking? I’m a certified first aider – can I help you?”. Yep. Pedantic.

But valid, I guess.

It’s just a whole other country with a huge range of strange habits, laws, and rules. It may take a bit of time to get used to, but I’m sure I’ll adjust soon enough.

Anyway, yesterday, we took part in normal first aid/CPR with the lifeguards of both Chimney Corners (the girls camp) and Becket (the boys camp). Much of the same stuff – with a few variances to accommodate water safety and what not. All pretty standard. HOWEVER what hasn’t been standard has been some of the night activities here.

Obviously, we’re a girls camp, so it’s been pretty rad (albeit strange) getting used to, and getting to know a whole bunch of females. I’m used to being one of the guys, so it’s quite refreshing being surrounded by women who are all about empowerment, and girl power (heh… yes, I’m aware some people might be rolling their eyes at this, but I’m all about equality šŸ˜‰ ). We went for an evening trip to Target on Tuesday night to get some supplies – and I was able to stock up on RUNNING shoes (as opposed to my gloriously faithful, yet not so cardio conducive Crossfit trainers), some hiking gear and a few other supplies. Some of the foods here are absolutely fascinating though.
Bacon jerky – which APPARENTLY is in New Zealand too, but I’ve never seen it

And buttery caramel coffee – not that I drink the stuff; I don’t. But it fascinates me that these kinds of flavors exist here!

And, of course, there was the ridiculous assortment of processed foods, candies, and general stuff you can expect from America (thank you, stereotyping), but it was all pretty exciting.

LAST NIGHT, however, we were treated to a trip to a local(ish) bar called Dream Away , which was amazing. Every Wednesday night (which was lastnight), they have an open mic night where a whole bunch of local musicians get together and share their respective ORIGINAL material. There was another newbie to the night; a guy named Casey of a band called Casey & the Base Notes , and we all just went around the circle and played music/jammed along with eachother. It was awesome! The lead guy was EPIC, and had some awesome songs, including a track he’d written about how full of shit FOX News is, which had everyone in hysterics, and I did a few acoustic songs: In My Head, Wary , and an acoustic version of my band’s song Start . It was awesome having the Chimney Girls there too – mostly because there seems to be such a strong bond between everyone that we could all happily let our hair down and have fun together. It was awesome!


So while I’m still feeling a bit awkward at times here, things are going well. I’m steadily figuring out where we are, what’s in the area, and what I’m doing (slowly! haha), but it’s only the beginning of day four! And, as luck would have it, I’m doing my driving lesson today. Watch out, America.

I’m used to the left side šŸ˜›


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