By David Sypniewski and Shem RooseThere're no predators on the islands of New Zealand, if you don't count humans. With the exception of some spiders, there's nothing there that will hurt you. New Zealand is a beautiful country, with its lush forests, pristine coastlines, and majestic mountains. It's the kind of place I imagine the world would be like without pollution, a place where life isn't as rushed, a place where your worries could slip away.
I've lost myself in New Zealand more than once before, so I don't understand what the hell happened this time. I was stressed out a week before we left, I was stressed every day we were there; in fact, I'm still stressed out. It may have been because we took off from work at one of the busiest times of the year. It may have been that we were supposed to be in Wanaka at the Rip Curl Heli Challenge the majority of the time, instead we were six hours away in Methven. Or it may have just been that I was elected to be our tour director and had no idea what we should be doing.
I've tried to write a story about our trip a few times, and each time I find that the events of the first three days could take up the whole article. So to get the majority of events conveyed to you I've decided to make a time line. This may be gypping you out of a few “descriptive” paragraphs, but I think it will help you get a better feel for our two weeks of pain.