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Awww Dan came into existence…

I was born 1977 in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England.  My mum came up with Daniel for my name.  When she suggested it to my dad as a strong name he said: “Daniel?  Yeah, it’s a strong name when you shout “Daniel!” he will really know about it!”  Now though I prefer to be called Dan.

I didn’t stay long…

I emigrated to New Zealand at 22 months old.  No, I didn’t just hop on a plane all by myself, my parents took me as they were going too.  We joined my mother’s family that had been there for a few years already.  I grew up with the stories my mother told me of how my parents travelled and from then on it has been the only constant dream I have ever had.

Back I went…

I lived in New Plymouth, New Zealand all the way through to 19 years old when I was lucky enough to go back to England and meet my fathers family.  It was meant to be a short trip of 4 months but it turned into an 8-year stint mostly spent in Bedford, Bedfordshire (I know, of all the places to be why Bedford?  It’s a long story).  I learned many things in those 8 years but as far as travelling went it was wasted time.  That’s not to say it was wasted in any other way.  Most of the best friends I have ever had are still there and I had many adventures along the way both good and not so good.

This seems to be a recurring theme so far…

At the end of 2004, I came home again and have been here ever since.  I have tried to fit into the normal life of being responsible, getting a career, owning a house, getting married and being a father. My marriage failed as did my business venture in a bar, I was never able to afford a house and I have struggled with depression for many years.  The only part that never went wrong was my kids.  I love them both dearly and I enjoy watching them become amazing people in their own right.  Kids though, grow up and I want them to have their own lives and adventures.

Time to really look at my life…

All along I have been disheartened with the ‘normal’ way of life.  As if I didn’t fit in.  My struggle with depression echoed this all the way through.  Eventually, I came to the conclusion that I had been denying my dream for too long.  This life I was trying to build was someone else’s idea of how it should be and not mine.  At the point where I am writing, I am 39 years old, my daughter is an adult, 19, and my son is still at school, 14.  I have sketched a plan.  As long as both my kids are on a steady path and are capable of making a life for themselves then when my son turns 18 I will follow my dream and live the life I think will suit me better. I will travel the world and see and do as much as I can.  With any luck, I will make this last for the rest of my time, but if not then at least I gave it a go and can move on to the next adventure.

A call to action…

It’s time to plan and do something about it.  I have 4 years though, what can I do in the meantime?  Well, I’ve always wanted to write about my travels.  What better time than researching travel blogs and starting my own?  Sure I may not be travelling the world yet but there are places and adventures locally and nationally that I can inform the world about.  That is what I am doing now.  As ‘New Zealand’s Specialist’ I will use this blog to introduce you to my country.  As I move further afield I will add other places to become a ‘World Explorer’.  I will tell you of the process’ I take on my journey and you can see step by step the mistakes and successes I make along the way.

This blog is called Dan’s Odyssey.  Odyssey means ‘a series of adventures’.  I’m starting mine now; you’re welcome to join me!

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