How did I get here?

This weekend I am jumping aboard the Say Yes to Adventure wagon (literally) and heading south to Wanaka. Why? Apart from the fact that Wanaka is a pretty impressive spot, the main reason is to check out the premiere screening of ‘Waters of the Greenstone’ at the Mountain Film Festival. Commissioned by Kathmandu and produced by the amazing crew from Resonate Productions, the documentary follows two women’s journey (myself and Robyn Dewson) as we attempt one of New Zealand’s most iconic sporting events, the Kathmandu Coast to Coast.

So how the heck did I get to be one of the main characters in this film? It’s a question I have asked myself over and over since I found out about it in August last year, not that I had any idea what I was signing up for. I don’t see myself as a top-level athlete, let alone someone who is worthy of being filmed as they run, bike and kayak from one side of the country to the other. But maybe that’s why they chose me. I am no different from you; I have dreams, I have goals, and I have a desire to do things that scare the bejesus out of me. So occasionally my adventures can be bigger than most, but I truly believe that anyone can do what I do, it’s just whether that’s what you want to do.

To be honest, I’m as nervous as hell! Watching myself (and hearing my voice) can be so cringe – all I can see are my insecurities. Double chin, cankles, whiney voice, stupid comments (did I really say that??) … plus there’s also that voice in your head telling you that your cover is going to be busted and you’re not actually any good at what you do! We are our own harshest critics. Or is this just me??

I was approached by Kathmandu mid-last year to be an ambassador for them and ultimately compete in the Coast to Coast. Over the eight months leading up to Coast I blogged and posted to social media about my training, as well as spending an epic week based at Arthur’s Pass being filmed and photographed alongside Jess De Bont, Richard and Elina Ussher, Robyn Dewson, David Avei and Courtney Atkinson. Plus, the great crew from Kathmandu, Resonate Productions (filming) and Mickey Ross (behind the lens).

While the weather didn’t exactly play ball, we managed to find enough breaks in the weather to get the job done. Biking up the viaduct, running through the pass and flying in helicopters – it all sounds so dreamy! (*cough) Read sandflies, lots of backwards and forwards, and a healthy dose of waiting. But an incredible experience and a new group of friends were made.

There aren’t any more screenings planned, but hopefully, we can work something out and get a screening here in Christchurch sometime soon. When I know more details, I will post them on my social media channels.

I also want to apologise in advance to Anna McCone and Joy Weston-Arnold. During school days, I loved doing aerobics (you will not catch me in those outfits ever again!!), and one year we headed to Invercargill to compete. It was a time that frizz hair was all the rage and throw-away cameras were how we recorded our life events. There is a section in the documentary where I am flicking through old photo albums and come across a section from the good old days. My fingers are crossed that the majority of people who watch will blink at the very second this image comes on the screen because boy howdy, it’s a doozy!”

“Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations.” – Unknown

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2 Comments on “How did I get here?

  1. Hollie you are such an inspiring person I love all that you do! I love listening to you talk and read everything I can that you write. You are a super cool human being, one out of the box so don’t ever doubt yourself because you have no need to! I’m a huge fan of yours and can’t wait to watch this! This is awesome well done 😊

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