Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sunday Star Times.

48 hours until I take my first step in Cape Reinga!!

I have the day off from exams today, with my last one tomorrow afternoon. After the exam, it will be straight off to the airport and on my way north!!

I still haven't packed my bags and am a bit concerned about how much stuff I have to take away. A box of gear arrived at my place yesterday. Inside were my 6 pairs of ADIDAS shoes, 10 pairs of socks, and pair of skins. I have been trying to wear the shoes in around the house, and they are feeling pretty comfortable so far. I also have to figure out a way of packing my protein bars - all 102!!

I have just had a photographer from the Sunday Star Times around. He took what felt like 200 photos of me walking toward him, away from him, crouching, standing, leaning on a post - and all other poses imaginable! It was quite an experience and hopefully I didn't make his job TOO difficult (I am not the most photogenic!!). Article will be in this Sunday's paper (2/11).

I also got a text from my 'Oxfam trail walk' team mate, Hannah, who said I had made the front page of todays Wellingtonian. I haven't seen it yet, but it could be good for a laugh (again, not so keen on photos, but apparently the article is really well written!!).

Last night was the last time I will see my mates until I reach Wellington on Dec 8th. We did our usual Wednesday night thing, starting at the Back Bencher Pub in Wellington, and finishing at the Welsh bar. We have done the same thing every Wednesday for the best part of this year, so it was a bit sad to say goodbye to everyone.
There is talk of a bit of a party at the Welsh bar once I arrive in Wellington, so will keep you updated (apparently some of the Hurricanes players will also make an appearance!!).

Anyway, I am off to visit a friend (in the knowledge that these bags wont pack themselves!!).

Flick me a text/email if you are keen on joining me in walking some of the distance - The itinerary is on the 'Emma's Walk for a Cure' facebook page & Fundraiseonline page.

027 464 33 49.

Monday, October 27, 2008

No longer 19...

Only 3 days until I begin!!!

Today is my 20th birthday, so I am no longer the 19 year old university student about to walk the length of NZ for charity.

I sat my Geography exam this morning, and have my International Relations exam tomorrow morning. My final Public Policy exam is on Friday afternoon. I might try to catch the Brazil v England Football match at the stadium on Thursday – depending on how much I get done before then!

I am getting bit nervous about the whole thing now, but am really looking forward to beginning - the worst part is the waiting around!!! I am confident I will settle into my new routine relatively quickly.

My Grandparents came up from the south Island on Friday afternoon, and spent the weekend with us.
My other Grandma has been staying with us for the past 2 weeks.
I spent quite a bit of time with my Aunty & Uncle and my Great Aunty and her partner over the weekend also!
It has been really good spending time with my family.
I know I will miss them all terribly while I am away.

On Sunday I had a BBQ with family and close friends. It was really good fun, and a great opportunity to say goodbye to everyone. I got a lot of really cool gifts too!
I also had the opportunity to go out for dinner one last time with the ATRA girls on Saturday night.
I think I must have over-done it a bit, as I am a bit sick now, and am feeling a bit sorry for myself in bed.

It has been a bit sad finishing up at work as well. I work 3 part-time jobs and have finished up with all but one of them.

I was also really on to it and on Thursday, voted in the general election.

Nothing else to report really… Over the next couple of days I will be packing my bags, uploading some new CD’s to my IPOD, and just sorting a few final things.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hi Guys.

9 days, 18 hours remaining!

Big News. I just received my largest online donation!! Hutt Valley Water Services has donated $1,000!! (Thanks Dad).

The donation was made through my Fundraiseonline website
( ).

This morning I had a reporter from the 'Wellingtonian' around for an interview.
For those of you who get this paper, keep an eye out for my article in next Thursday's paper (30/10) - hopefully the photo is ok!!

Also, 'Cream' magazine is interested in an interview, and I am expecting a call about that in the next few days.

I was interviewed by an Auckland Journalist last night. I will find out the name of the paper and when her article is due to be released, and update that here!

My 'tour' of Pinehaven school (Upper Hutt) went well last Thursday. I spoke to 10 classes and got some pretty good, well thought out questions - and a few that weren't so good, but made me laugh!! Ange was there filming, and assures me she got some good footage!!
My talk at Karori Baptist also went well - I ended up speaking at all 3 services!!

The next couple of days will be filled with STUDY and packing!! Some more filming for the doco is also planned for tonight. Hopefully I will get to spend a bit of time with family and friends as well.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008


  • Hi Guys,

    Just under 16 days, 14 hours remaining!!!

    From the 25th of October I will post an update daily. Unfortunately, I have been flat out over the last coupel of weeks, and haven't had an opportunity to blog. A lot has happened in that time, so here is a (not so) Quick update on progress:


    A few months ago, Jucy Rentals kindly sponsored a Crib Campa for my walk. As the Crib Campa only has 2 seatbelts, a further vehicle was needed. I spent a couple of months contacting various rental companies, but to no avail. I had some success with one company (or so I thought), however, yesterday this company confirmed they would not be involved. At that point I was a bit unsure what to do next, as it appeared I had exhausted all of my options.
    Step in Jucy Rentals...
    Jucy has also offered to provide me with a 5 seater rental car, as well as the initial Camper van.
    Big thanks goes to Tim and Amelia at Jucy for their support - couldn't be done without you guys!!!

    Adidas have come onboard, and have offered to provide me with some gear at heavily discounted prices!!
    I was in Christchurch for the day yesterday, and was able to get fitted for gear. I am fortunate enough to be sponsored 6 pairs of Adidas shoes, 3 pairs of Adidas Skins, and 10 pairs of 'special' socks - the kind that draw moisture away from your feet. Having Adidas onboard is a huge honour (I feel like an All Black), and I am stoked with their generosity.

    Ian Leighton, owner of South Brighton Chemist in Christchurch has VERY kindly donated a box of supplies. I now have (from memory) plenty of sunscreen, lip balm, anti-flam massage cream, voltaren gel, pain killers & anti-inflammatory medication, 3B chaffing cream, blister plasters and more. A big thank you to Ian and his staff - I really appreciate the donation, and am sure it will come in handy!!

    Four Winds Productions have also become involved in this project. Their role is to deal with the publicity side of the walk. I am assured that after the election the media will be all over this walk! (I am not too sure how I feel about that - those of you who know me best, know that I don't like to be in the spotlight!!).

    I have just been interviewed by the Dominion Post - fast work, well done guys! Look out for my interview during the last week of October.

    BP has donated $230 worth of petrol vouchers.

    Patrick Jackson, charity manager of the Chris Cairns Foundation, has agreed to let us use the 2 big orange 'Walker' (road) signs Chris used during his walk. These signs attach to the tow bar of a vehicle, and garner a lot of attention! Thanks Patrick, I was having real trouble securing similar signs, and I am sure these will do the trick.

    I was also lucky enough to catch up with Chris, a few days out from completing his walk. He was able to offer lots of advice, and even insisted I look at his feet (not pretty). Thanks Chris, for all the helpful hints!!

    Thanks to Steve and the staff at HVWS, for the donation of a light-weight, fluoro rain jacket, and other clothing.

    These guys got a mention in the last update - but thanks again to Horleys for the donation of 102 Protein33 bars. And thanks to Andy at LA Fitness in Petone, for the loan of a treadmill.

    In my last update, I mentioned that I had applied to sit my exams a couple of days early, and that I was still waiting on the outcome.
    Unfortunately, I received some bad news...
    Victoria University declined my application. I appealed this decision and took my case to the Vice Chancellor, who also declined my application.
    To be honest, I am really disappointed with the way in which Victoria dealt with this situation - I would even go so far as to say, this experience has left me embarrassed to call myself a student of Victoria University.

    The situation now, is that I will sit my final exam on October the 31st (finishing at 6pm). I will then catch a 730pm flight from Wellington to Auckland, and a further flight from Auckland to Whangarei at 930pm. I then need to drive from Whangarei to Cape Reinga (aprox 3hrs). I don't anticipate arriving in Cape Reinga before 2am. I had planned to begin my walk at 6am on the 1st, however, the starting time may need to be reconsidered in light of this situation.

    The worst part is that I will miss the Porwhiri and launch dinner on the 31st!!!!

    I suppose one positive outcome is that I didn't have to go through the flawed process again, and pay the exorbitant fee to sit any exams during my walk!!

    ...Rant over!

    I also mentioned in my last update that I was having a bit of trouble securing a crew. The good news is, this has now been confirmed!! I am very fortunate to have accompanying me, Sharon Hanna (physiotherapist), Kim Taylor (physiotherapist), and Paul Fowler (driver). I am really stoked to have these guys on board, and I am sure we will have an awesome time together!!


    I have been invited to talk to 10 classes at Pine Haven school, in Upper Hutt tomorrow. Furthermore, I will also be talking a little about the walk at Karori Baptist Church on Sunday (two services, 9am & 10:30 - would be great to see you there!!).

    I have a few more 'engagements' during the walk, but will update you all closer to the time.

    NZ ARMY:
    The New Zealand Army look keen to get involved in the walk. They will do this by assisting with bucket collections (as I walk through towns), and even accompany me on some of the legs. This will be a great boost, and I am sure my competitive nature will shine through! Thanks to my trainer, SGT Davey Forbes for setting the wheels in motion.

    Initially I thought the concept of a documentary was put on the back burner when Ange (film maker) was offered a paid position working on a feature film in Australia. Since then, Ange and Jenifer (founder of Bush Craft Productions), have been working on securing film makers from around the country to become involved, and film certain parts of the walk. This is a really exciting prospect, and I look forward to updating you on the progress.

    We have printed up a few t-shirts which are being sold for around $15 each. All proceeds from sales will go towards my fundraising goal of $50,000. Email me if you are keen to get hold of one.

    Accommodation looks to be all sorted (bar a few places). I am even embarrassed to say that some of the places we are staying at are quite flash!! Thank you to everyone who has offered to put us up for a night or two!!!

    I am still having a bit of trouble with my left Achilles. Prayers are appreciated.
    Thanks to my Saturday walking buddies (Ferg, Hannah, Mike, and Jane).

    During the walk be sure to visit: ('Emma's Walk for a Cure'Facebook page).