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When we are with a partner share A year and a half ago I left Lyttelton and ran straight back into the familiar arms of Wanaka. My home for many years, it made sense to return to my old home. A place I knew well and comfortably five hours from Lyttelton, where I could hide, heal and hopefully become whole again.
Traveling for nine months, I bounced from houses to Airbnbs to apartments to my parents’ house to my car until my foggy mind began to sharpen again. Looking back now, I don’t even remember much. It was so painful. Half-dead for winter, I realized I needed to get my shit together and figure out where I was going to live. After tirelessly searching for a place to rent in Wanaka, scoffing loudly at how expensive they were, on a whim I went to look at a newly built small one bedroom apartment in Hawea, a lakeside village 20 minutes from Wanaka. It was perfect.
Many of my friends have moved here over the years as it was more affordable than Wanaka. That being said, you’d be hard-pressed to find a house for a cool million these days. Breath. I need to write more books.
And it’s been almost a year since I called Javea at home. And I love every minute of it. I remember seeing a postman in New Zealand delivering mail on an unusual looking bicycle.
When I came across UBCO online, I made a connection. I sold my little red scooter a year ago; while I’m not quite ready to own an electric car, a rugged adventure bike is perfect for me.
I’ve been exploring my new backyard all year from the back of my new one UBCO electric motorcycle. There are so many epic rambles and awesome trails that I never got to check out when I lived in Wanaka. Isn’t it funny how that happens? Almost ten years here and I’ve barely scratched the surface.
Many of the tracks and cool spots here are located on dusty dirt roads, perfect for traveling on New Zealand’s rugged UBCO off-road motorcycle. And I’m even better off knowing it’s all electric and I’m leaving no marks, just light tire marks.
It’s a bit of a long and convoluted story, but after the divorce I got both of our cars: my trusty old 1996 Nissan Terrano and a flashy red Alfa Romeo Giulietta. It was bad. I tried to sell the Alfa but couldn’t get enough funds to pay off the car loan so I ended up selling the truck I had for years. It was heartbreaking! I loved Ron! (it was burgundy, you know?) But it was getting old, and it was a diesel, and it was probably time for an upgrade.
The amazing thing is that these tough and indestructible trucks are in such high demand. I had it for almost eight years, put over 100,000 kilometers on it and sold it for more than I paid for it. Go figure it out.
I’m left with my red European motor car that costs me about $175 to fill up the gas tank and I can’t drive it on most of the mountain roads I love. FML. So I don’t want to hear any complaints from my fellow Americans about gas prices.
I’ve been planning for a while that my next car will be electric, although the way my apartment works, I don’t know how I can install a charger for it. But the UBCO turns out to be the perfect solution – I can charge it from a regular outlet.
Transport emissions are the fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions in New Zealand and account for 20% of all the emissions we produce. In fact, almost 70% of all transport CO2 emissions come from cars, SUVs, vans, vans and light trucks. It’s a lot.
As the years go by, I focus more and more on stories of change-makers, people and companies doing good. Grown on high country farms, UBCO was founded in New Zealand on the basis of a durable all-wheel drive electric universal bicycle. their stability initiatives and goals coincide with mine.
No fuel, no noise, no clutch, no gears, no emissions. And it gets 120 km on a single charge. I mean come on, how great is that?
UBCO is now working between the US and New Zealand, as I am.
Stability became important to me. I am slowly transitioning to only working with people who are interested in conservation and sustainability. While I’m not perfect, I’m aware of my footprint and I’m taking steps to live more easily.
It’s easy to look at the bigger picture of climate change and feel overwhelmed. To think, hmm, we screwed up, and no matter what I do, nothing will change. But it is so! I firmly believe that any steps help; you don’t have to turn your life upside down. And the more people take these small steps, the more companies and politicians will have to change to meet the demand. Just my two cents.
New Zealand, especially the South Island, is relatively sparsely populated. It is difficult to walk to the places you visit every day. Things are laid out. But Hawea has become its own little village, perfect for getting around on a UBCO motorbike in New Zealand. Even to Wanaka.
What I like, especially as someone who knows nothing about motorcycle troubleshooting, is that there is a UBCO app that lets you see and control a lot of the bike from your phone.
Synchronization of my UBCO 2×2 bike with the app I can monitor engine power and temperature, upgrade the bike and even adjust things like regenerative braking. You can also run diagnostics on it, which I’ve already accidentally tried. Turns out I just didn’t insert the battery all the way in – bad luck.
But overall, I really like this new way of getting around. I like feeling like I can fully understand how it works and get the most out of it. It seems easy and simple, and quite manageable. In today’s busy, fast-paced world, it really helps me de-stress and get back to the adventures I love!
Almost every afternoon this summer I took her for a ride to the lake for a daily swim and read in the sunshine. And the verdict: Lake Javea wins hands down Lake Wanaka.
We had such an amazing summer and I intended to swim in the lake almost every day while racing to the beach on my UBCO bike. If you’ve been here before, you know that Lake Javea is not a warm lake. It’s a little colder than Lake Wanaka, but crystal clear with gray pebbles and gets deep right away. Looks like the Caribbean, but feels like Alaska.
Once you get over the initial shock, it feels great, especially on a very hot sunny day. Now that we’ve slipped into fall and winter is fast approaching, I’ve become one of those crazy people who dips (almost) every day. As summer ends, so do the winds, and we have many more calm and quiet days where the lake becomes glassy, not even a ripple. Nice to ride a bike to the beach.
It’s so beautiful, but also so cold. It is fresh at 9°C to 10°C (48-50°F). Once I get over the initial shock and my ankles stop feeling like they’re cracking, it’s really nice. I meditate for a few minutes and think about some of the things that are going around in my head before I leave and go home. I love it.
So many of my friends live in Gavea and with our little shop on the corner I’m staying here more and more. Forgetting about my car and its painful fuel consumption, I now ride my UBCO electric motorcycle in New Zealand.
With a range of 120 km, it goes and goes – and it’s road legal too. Charging lasts about six hours and reaches a maximum speed of 50 km per hour. It has about 19 lugs where you can attach gear; you can add great accessories to it. Because it’s so light, you can mount it to a regular bike rack on your car’s towbar (check the details first).
Since this is an epic SUV with the most powerful suspension (spec expert here), I’ve explored all the back roads, trails and the occasional wonder-can-it-pass-this place and I haven’t crashed it yet! Such a great and fun way to get around.
Now I go further and play with her off-road. I’m glad to finally have off-road wheels again.
There’s something so liberating about being out in the open like that. You feel more alive. I can easily say that this UBCO bike in New Zealand has been a real game changer for me.
It’s so weird and fun to turn it on; does not make a sound. It does not rotate like a traditional bicycle. In addition, it also picks up speed much faster. Every time I pull away from the driveway, my heart beats a little faster with excitement. And I feel safer knowing it’s not as heavy as other bikes and I can ride it almost anywhere. With its big, strong tires, it can handle anything.
Now I’m planning how I can use my bike to get out here deeper into the wilderness. Where should I take her next?
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