Gabriele Steindl: Professional Kitesurfer & Freelance Writer - Action, Lifestyle & Travels

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Arrival Christchurch – Quarantine inspection 4 quiver & kitegabi !?

Arrival Christchurch – Quarantine inspection 4 quiver & kitegabi !?

One should think traveling from Western Australia to New Zealand is only a quick trip…W R O N G !!  My journey from Margaret River, about 4 hours South of Perth to Chritschurch New zealand took almost longer than if I’d had travelled from Europe.  One more thing that’s sure is:  checking in costed me more nerves than a check in’s of a Round-the-World ticket combined would.

I wanna spare you now of all details, it would make a rather oring airport novel in itself, the very short version, however, is:   I had been promised by a supervisor of Virgin Blue / Pacific Blue that I should not get any troubles @ Check-In as long as I pack my gear into ONE boardbag and as long as the  o t h e r  bag would be less than 15 kg.  So I did, obviously, like always airport staff was of a complete different opinion.  A huuuuge discussion followed…  airline staff is always the winner, they’re bargaining force of  ‘if you don’t do … or if you don’t pay, you’ll simply won’t get onto that plane’  once again stood against my requests for mercy as well as the info  that I had been given my the supervisor (who – according to the Check In staff – did NOT have the authority to make the respective notes in my booking !??). AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAhhhhhhh… !!!

Yep, thus, repacking there and then…and almost missing the plane.  I got there wet as a dog, after rushing in 10 minutes through security and with hundredds of small thinigs in all my pockets, a backpack of good 15kgs, 2 jackets, jumpers (that did not fit into the check-in luggage no more) but hey, I did it.   Flying via Melbourne, sleeping on these 3 hours after all that stress was impossible, thus, got off the plane in Melbourne at 5:00 am zombie-faced and feeling spaced out as !!?

The second leg of the trup was at least as draining and started with airline ground staff complaining about my 15kg backpack and that the stuff would needed to be checked in…and and and…  N I G H T M A R E !!

I made it over to Christchurch in the end, though….collection my gear and bags at the luggage reclaim, I felt relieved and assumed that was it for the travel torture.  I was wrong again.  Quarantine officers stopped me after the passport / visa control, pulled me over and into a small room.  There, e v e r y  single piece of equipment had to be taken out of my bags and inspected for seeds, grass and other tiny pieces of nature  (and I mean:  t i n y !!  the quarantine lady was super stoked when whe found a grass halm of about 0,005 mm x 20 mm and told me with a big, content grin “see, that’s what we’re after”…  She was very friendly, though, and regardless of the ‘no camera signs everywhere in the room’, allowed me to take a couple of snap shots of her working on my kites 🙂 !!

Finally I could get out of the airport building and breathe kiwi-air for the first time in my life, sweet !!!  So stoked, can’t wait 2 see what this adventure hs in store for me 🙂

Please don’t curse me guys if updates will be VERY sporadic….I’m travelling in a campervan and reckon it might get tricky and too time consuming 2 find internet cafes along the way!?  …but promise will try !!
Catch ya,