|Many signs and names of towns are were based on the indigenous inhabitants of New Zealand, the Māori who’s language has had official language status, with the right to use it in legal settings such as in court, since the Maori Language Act 1987. There are around 70,000 native speakers of Maori out of a population of over 500,000 Māori people, with 161,000 of the country’s 4 million residents claiming conversational ability in Māori.”|
The Zika virus is rapidly spreading throughout the world with the majority of cases in South America, particularly in Brazil with over one million cases and growing out of control.
Here’s more information on the Zika virus from the US’s Center for Disease Control (CDC).
|Its easy to expect beaches throughout the world to be sandy and pristine with blue waters. Many beaches such as in New Zealand and Australia aren’t blue due to the interaction of light and particles present in the water. When there are mineral sediments lights from the blue spectrum are absorbed by the particles thus the water appears to be brown. Also, not all beaches have the soft fine sand we found in Belize and Hawaii.|
No doubt this virus will spread to other countries in South America and throughout the world unless drastic measures are taken to control it. What those measures may be at this point are unknown and under research in many laboratories worldwide.
|Low tide is more evident on many beaches but not all.|
Will a vaccine, cure or remedy be available by 2017 when we head to South America? At this point, we have no idea but continue to watch the news for updates. Will we change our plans to spend as much as two years in South America from 2017 to 2019?
As we’ve traveled continents, island nations and many countries we’ve heard of a variety of viruses that may infect locals and travelers alike. We don’t take any of these illnesses lightly. That’s what precipitated our having as many as 18 vaccinations before we left the US which we’ll update as needed over time.
|With many surfers attracted to this area, a lifeguard is on duty, well equipped for rescue.|
However, new viruses continue to develop throughout the world and our exposure is no doubt enhanced as we traveled to potentially infected countries. We’ve already visited several of the countries on the currently “infected” list.
|Surfers awaiting an opportunity.|
Now, as we’ve begun to book travel to South America, there’s no doubt we’ve given the Vika virus consideration as to the impact it may have on us visiting such countries as Brazil.
How else might we travel the Amazon River in Brazil and eventually, the top priority on our list…the Pantanal, the most wildlife diverse wetlands areas in the world (talk about mosquitoes!).
|Pretty cloud formation on a very cloudy day. Note distant airplane and boat in left of photo.|
At this point, after considerable discussion and information gathering we’ve decided to continue with our plans. Its not as if we can say, “Oh, let’s wait and go in 10 years?” In twelve years I’ll be 80 years old and Tom will be 75. Will we have the health and stamina we now have to continue? There’s no way of knowing.
|Campgrounds are located at the end of the road at Oakura Beach with an onsite office for booking space.|
If we were young, putting off South America would be practical. We’re not. The clock is ticking, whether we like it or not, as it is for everyone. It just so happens we’re closer to the final hour along with all the others our age throughout the world, many of us whom have “things to do” and “places to see” before its too late.
|There are permanent and temporary sites for caravans (motorhomes) and travel trailer type homes.|
Continuing with our desire of visiting each continent before it is too late, doesn’t dissipate with news of a virus that based on information to date, is not life threatening for adults who aren’t pregnant.
If this virus was comparable to the deadly Ebola virus, we’d definitely change our plans. If, at any point the virus is considered life threatening to older adults, we’ll certainly reassess our views, changing plans if necessary.
|Small sleeping tent sites are available for a fee which includes multiple facilities.|
For now, we trek on…with hope in our hearts for a resolution for those living in infected countries and for our ongoing safety as we continue our journey.
Have a lovely weekend…
Photos from one year ago today, January 30, 2015:
|The colors in the tunnels at Tunnels Beach were varied when we visited the Napali Coast in Kauai. For more details, please click here.|