Prisoners Of Our Minds

Canterbury, New Zealand Articles

Listing # RA-1024426


Details of Prisoners Of Our Minds, Canterbury, New Zealand Articles
Details for Prisoners Of Our Minds

Contributed By RealAdventures

by Ron Marriott

I hate to admit it, but after a lifetime of hating people, I am starting to like them. They are touching me and it feels good, most of the time. I think now that most people want to be honest and decent, if their bloody lives will let them. It seems to me that, for a lot of people, a city life is a pressure-filled life. A sort of exciting merry-go-round, fun if you don’t fall off. And I think a lot of the people we get here are those who have fallen off, or at least want to get off.

Someone said to me that this place is a “turnaround” place. Right at the end of the Sound, it’s the place where you stop for a while when you find you can’t go any further. And then you turn around. Some go back to where they come from, at least knowing that they want to. And some go off to a new destination, having found that it wasn’t as hard to get off the merry-go-round as they had thought. I think that I came here like that. Only I haven’t left yet.

Heike was like that. I first met her when she came for a few days as a guest. At that early stage of her travels she was bright, bubbly and full of excitement at the prospect of travelling through the wonders of South Island nature. Later, nearly at the end of her travels, she wrote and asked if she could come again, but this time for a longer period and as a “woofer.” A woofer is a kind of modern tramp. They work a few hours a day for their keep. I said OK.

Heike this time was a little different – happy enough and full of praise for New Zealand and New Zealanders, but a little wistful at the thought of her imminent return to Germany. Over the next couple of weeks, bit by bit, it all came out. Her travel in NZ had opened her eyes to a different kind of life and environment. To her, NZ was a land of blue seas, green bush and crashing waterfalls, inhabited by people who put play before work and family life before money. In NZ, people had time to sit round and talk about things and did not live for work, she thought. While as a New Zealander I was more than a little chuffed at her feelings about my land, I privately thought that this didn’t quite sound like the country I knew. I said very little, hoping that in the end she would work it all through.

But she didn’t. A couple of days before she was due to leave, we were mustering the sheep. During a break, when we were gathering a few mushrooms for dinner and talking about how they were going to be cooked, she burst out with, “How can I go back to Germany after this? Look at me. I am here on this beautiful day in this beautiful land, and the thing which is most important is how we are going to cook these mushrooms tonight. This could never happen in Germany. I can’t go back.”

Her despair wrenched at my gut like a knife and we sat down, forgetting the sheep for a while. We talked, something like this:

“Why can’t this happen in Germany. Do you not have sunny days?” I asked.

“Yes, of course,” Heike said.

“Do you not have green grass and sheep and nice scenery?”

“Yes.”

“Well, why can’t this happen in Germany?”

“People there don’t have time.”

“Look, Heike, I don’t really want to tell you this, but I think you’ve got the wrong idea about New Zealanders. Most ordinary people in our cities are so busy competing with each other they don’t have time, either. In your travel here you have been meeting people like me whose job it is to have time to talk. I think that really we are not so different to Germans.“

“I hate my job,” she said.

“Well, what you rather do?” I asked.

“I want to work with children.”

“Why don’t you?”

“In Germany, this job is not considered high. It is poorly paid. In Germany you are only respected when you work to the maximum of your capability, and your capability is judged by the quality of job you have.”

“But the people who matter, your boyfriend, your parents, your friends, they would still love you, wouldn’t they?”

“Yes. I don’t know.”

I was stumped, she unconvinced, and so we went on. I don’t know who was the more depressed. I couldn’t begin to understand a culture apparently so rigid, and I didn’t really believe it, but I didn’t know. My rosy glow of self-satisfaction was gone. Her experience in my country, as good as it was, had made her miserable.

I was still sad when it became time for her to go, a sadness that even the warmth of her parting hug could not dispel. I felt such a bloody failure. I said that I would think of her and I meant it, but I knew that the thought would not bring me joy.

About six months later, a card came. It was from Heike. She said that she had chucked her old job in, was working with intellectually handicapped children, and that she was very happy and settled back in her country. It seemed that her fears had been unfounded. It was her mind that had been keeping her prisoner, not her country. Her travel experience had shown her a different way, which in the end she followed, and all was well.

I hope all is still well, Heike, and that one day you might come back and read this story and know how much happiness your card gave me that day. You touched me, and I liked it. I said I would think of you and I often do, particularly when I’m collecting mushrooms.





Like This Listing? Share it with your friends


Map & Contact Info - Prisoners Of Our Minds


Interactive Map for Prisoners Of Our Minds
RealAdventures
Prisoners Of Our Minds
New Zealand

Website: Queen Charlotte Wilderness Park








impressions Listing Impressions


Who do you think this listing would appeal most to?

Ideal For
 
Couples
0 votes
 
Family
0 votes
 
Groups
0 votes
 
Senior
0 votes
 
Solo
0 votes
 
Students
0 votes
Style & Spirit
 
Active
0 votes
 
Adventurous
0 votes
 
Educational
0 votes
 
Inspiring
0 votes
 
Party
0 votes
 
Relaxing
0 votes
 
Romantic
0 votes

Similar Listings You May Be Interested In

Accommodations in New Zealand | View More...

Romantic Bed and Breakfast in a Spectacular Spot

Romantic Bed and Breakfast in a Spectacular Spot
Canterbury, New Zealand Bed & Breakfasts
Perched above the Kaikoura township overlooking the Mountains and Pacific ocean. Austin Heights quality self-contained accommodation is only a five minute drive from the town center and all local attractions and marine life ativities!...
Starting at 249 Per Night

Albergo Hanmer Lodge & Alpine Villas

Albergo Hanmer Lodge & Alpine Villas
Canterbury, New Zealand Bed & Breakfasts
A Place where magic happens! Dramatic alpine views, stylish suites n’spas, S/C villas: cinema/DVD & jacuzzi. Flexitime renowned 3 course designer breakfast incl.-perfect fusion of NZ & Swiss cuisine: homely bread, fine Italian coffee. Blitz yoursel...
Starting at 240 Per Night/Room

Glentanner Park Centre Mount Cook New Zealand

Glentanner Park Centre Mount Cook New Zealand
Canterbury, New Zealand Campgrounds & RV Parks
Leading flightseeing and activity centre, budget accommodation provider and the only fully equipped campground with tent sites and powered sites in the Mt Cook region. Just 18km from Mt Cook National Park....
Starting at 18 Per Night


Activities, Adventures & Tours in Canterbury | View More...

Hurunui Horse Treks

Hurunui Horse Treks
Canterbury, New Zealand Horseback Riding
Hurunui Horse Treks has been operating a variety of multi day trail rides and pack trips through the spectacular high country of New Zealands South Island since 1987....

Get high on some alpine hikes in New Zealand

Get high on some alpine hikes in New Zealand
Canterbury, New Zealand Hiking & Trekking
Climb high on these 2 or 3-day alpine treks. The Ball Pass Treks, and Aoraki Mt Cook Trek give spectacular views of New Zealand's highest mountains. The Tekapo Trek gives you panoramas over Lake Tekapo, the Mackenzie Basin and the Southern Alps....
Starting at 590 Per Person

Bicycle Touring New Zealand

Bicycle Touring New Zealand
Canterbury, New Zealand Bike Tours
Join us in New Zealand for your dream cycling holiday in one of the worlds most stunning locations. We have two five day packages that can be combined to make 11 fantastic days of riding in the South Island. Come join us soon! ...
$968 Per Trip


Nature & Wildlife in New Zealand | View More...

Kiwi Dundee Adventures Ltd.     New Zealand

Kiwi Dundee Adventures Ltd. New Zealand
Coromandel, New Zealand Eco Tours
Doug & Jan are two fun loving genuine 'Kiwi' Guides.Doug Johansen is regarded as one of NZ's foremost guides with a wealth of knowledge on the natural world. His feats earned him the 'Kiwi Dundee' title in 1988, the Queens medal for services to Natur...
Starting at $230 Per Person

Queen Charlotte Wilderness Park

Queen Charlotte Wilderness Park
Marlborough, New Zealand Eco Tours
Private native wildlife sanctuary and island in the beautiful Marlborough Sounds. Miles of private walking tracks, beaches, gold mines, scuba, snorkelling, fishing, wilderness, nature....
$100 Per Night

Bush & Beyond guided conservation walks

Bush & Beyond guided conservation walks
Kahurangi Park, New Zealand Wildlife & Safari Tours
The original operator in Kahurangi National Park. New Zealand's most diverse wilderness park. Largest variety of plant species, rare birds and scenery from alpine to coastal. Trips 1 to 8 days, all ages and fitness levels....
$105 Per Trip


Personal Growth in New Zealand | View More...

Queenstown Wine Trail - wine tours New Zealand

Queenstown Wine Trail - wine tours New Zealand
Queenstown, New Zealand Wine Tasting
First time tasters or wine connoisseurs join us for a full afternoon of wine tasting, just a short journey from Queenstown this relaxed personalised tour takes in a selection of our finest boutique wineries. Operating daily deparures at 12.30pm....
Starting at 129 Per Person


Advertise Your Accommodation or Travel Services


Create A ListingGreat Vacations & Exciting Destinations Listing
Add a full-page listing promoting your accommodations, tours or travel services to customers on our network of travel sites. Your listing page can have up to 26 images, unlimited text, interactive map, availability calendar, ecards, photo-gallery and more.
Rates From US $17 Per Month    » View Details

» See Link Codes
Link Codes - Add This Listing To Your Site

Add this listing to your website, CraigsList, FaceBook, MySpace or blog.

Prisoners Of Our Minds
Canterbury, New Zealand Articles
An inspirational story about the life-changing possibilities of nature travel.

Great rates & deals!

>>

Canterbury, New Zealand Articles | New Zealand Articles | New Zealand Vacations | Canterbury, New Zealand
Articles | Articles New Zealand
Link Code


RealAdventures
Prisoners Of Our Minds
New Zealand

Website: Queen Charlotte Wilderness Park

Current Search





Disclaimer: Information provided through RealAdventures website, newsletters, emails or other services has been provided directly by the companies and/or individuals owning or offering the products/services. RealAdventures does not guarantee or warranty the accuracy of the information contained herein. It is the sole responsibility of the user to ensure the accuracy and clarity of any posted material and to determine the suitability of any service for their particular needs or requirements. Likewise, it is the responsibility of advertisers to determine the suitability and credit worthiness of potential customers prior to any transaction.
/listings/1024426_Prisoners-Of-Our-Minds