12 April 2006

New Zealand makes front page of BBC News: Bad news as usual

BerlinBear avatarToday once again, New Zealand graces the front page of the BBC News website. As ever, though, it's bad news.

It would seem that a young British chap had been missing in the Coromandel region, after failing to return from a tramping excursion, and now they've found his body. That sucks.

Robert Atkin, from Lancashire, was only 26 and was just 3 weeks into what was supposed to be a one year long holiday in New Zealand with his girlfriend. Poor guy, and for that matter, poor girl. My heart goes out to her, and to the young man's family. What a horrible thing to have happen.

The BBC article notes:
Rescue workers said Mr Atkin had experience of hiking in the UK, but not in New Zealand.

They said last week that he may have become disoriented by using northern hemisphere sun settings and inadvertently headed further into the bush.
As a personal aside, I would think that that is quite possible. I've lived in Europe for six years now and I still haven't got my head around the different movements of the sun - or the moon, for that matter - here, as compared with back home. What chance does someone in their first three weeks on the other side of the world have, then?