Goodbye Auckland. Hello Vanlife!

My spot for tonight.

My spot for tonight.

It’s done. I’m officially living in my van and have left the big smoke behind.

It’s day #3 of living in the van but tonight is the first night I’m actually on my own. I’m parked up at a really nice spot by a river just south of Hamilton and Cambridge.

 

But let’s back up a little.

You know how often, we really look forward to something for weeks and then it finally happens and before we know it’s all over and we kind of feel like we missed it? Big milestones in life that just rush past without us really appreciating the moment?

It has happened to me so many times and I really wanted to make sure this time would be different. I really wanted to take it all in, really appreciate that the ‘big day’ has finally come.

How do you make sure you really appreciate the ‘big day’? Well, in my case you make a whole weekend of it :)

And I could have not asked for a more perfect weekend!!!

Thursday was my last day in the office – now I’m officially working remotely and fewer hours. Friday was all about packing up, giving Josie a good spring clean and then moving all my stuff into the van. I think it will take a while before everything has really found its place, it’s still a bit chaotic right now. But I totally love making the van my home.

Friday night I went to an 80s music show in Auckland with a bunch of my friends and we had a really fun night!

Magical Muriwai

Magical Muriwai

On Saturday I headed out to Muriwai, which is on the west coast of Auckland, and that’s where I stayed till this morning. I hadn’t really planned to stay that long but it was absolutely stunning out there. The sun was shining the surf was glassy, small and fun – something that’s quite rare for the west coast of Auckland (it has a bit of a reputation for being wild and crazy most of the time…).

Besides, Muriwai is one of my favourite places in the world, maybe even the top one, so what better place to start my vanlife.

A few of my friends came out in the afternoon and two of them stayed with me overnight. We surfed three times and I was actually making some progress on my long board J

On Sunday morning almost my entire ‘crew’ came out and we had an awesome time on the beach catching up and catching waves (I might actually be getting the hang of this surfing thing…).

And to make an already great weekend event better, another great friend of mine came out on Sunday evening to spend the night camping with me. We sat at the beach and drank tea while watching the sunset.

After another surf on Monday morning followed by amazing breakfast it was finally time to say goodbye to the last of my friends and start the solo adventure.

All packed up and ready to go. See you later Auckland! 

All packed up and ready to go. See you later Auckland! 

The weekend has been perfect in so many ways. Being out in Muriwai, the amazing weather, spending so much time in the ocean and, most of all, getting to spend time with almost all of my favourite people made it the perfect way to really appreciate the start of my vanlife.

Now I’m excited for what’s ahead.

I started to make my way south today and left Auckland behind. Tomorrow I will be making my way to Taupo, a small town right by a big lake in the centre of the North Island of NZ. I will be based there for the rest of the week for work – my company is doing work with Ironman NZ and they have their half Ironman race down there on Saturday so I volunteered to be our person on the ground for the week.

This coming week will still be a bit ‘structured’ because of the work I’m doing with the but it’s kind of nice to ease into this whole freedom thing a bit.

After this Saturday I will be truly free to go wherever I want to – and I have no idea yet where that is :)