Last year I went to the European version of the Mountain Film Festival – an evening full of short films about sports, adventure and the outdoors. The film which inspired me most in Salzburg was “Crossing the Ice” – the story of Cas & Jonesy, two Australians who were the first ones to ski from the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back unsupported (which means they dragged 160 kg of gear behind them – 160 kg per person over a distance of 2275km). And they had never been on skis before that! To give you an insight into what they are liked watch one of my favourite scenes from the movie – when Cas surprised Jonesy on Christmas Day with a very special present:
When I read that the New Zealand version of the Mountain Film Festival was held in Wanaka I was pretty sure I would go there. When I heard that exactly those two crazy Aussies would be in town to give a speech about their adventures (they had also paddled from Australia to New Zealand a couple of years ago) I knew I wanted to see them in person. They opened the show with clips from their worst moments in Antarctica – both of them crying, in pain and being absolutely devastated. But during the course of the evening they also talked about the lessons they learned along the way and it was absolutely inspiring to follow their path from anxious & overweight teenage geeks to well trained inspirational speakers.
The Mountain Film Festival was on for almost a week but mostly without me as a terrible flu kept me on the couch during my evenings. I managed to drag my hurting and drugged body to one other event though – a workshop on adventure writing where a local lady taught us creative techniques to enhance our writing. Let’s see how that works!