"Welcome to Kimi the Travel Bear" Kimi_the_Bear's Profile
5 November 2012 - So many news!
Sorry, I have not updated my intro for quite a while. But as I have just come back from a six-week holiday in Germany - where I met up with my VT friend Russel the Wombat - and today Kimi Räikkönen has won the Formula 1 race in Abu Dhabi, I feel compelled to tell you that today is quite a happy day for me :-)
27 February 2011 - I have survived the earthquake :-)))
Just to let you know, I only fell on my nose during the Christchurch 6.3 magnitude earthquake on 22 Feb although I sat in the epicentre in Lyttelton - but lucky me, on the sofa. I am still shaking when I think of it. But I am happy that my humans remained unscathed, too, although Mama was close to being hit by a falling cupboard. And we still have our house. I am not a big help in the cleaning and tidying-up process...
Find more photos on my Lyttelton page
08 August 2011
Just back from French Polynesia: Tahiti, Bora Bora, Moorea, Raiatea, Maupiti - and a cruise to the Marquesas and Tuamotus :-)) Busy working on photos now...
Two years earlier I was on a fabulous three-week cruise in the South Pacific. I had many great adventures, travelling ashore by bicycle on Bora Bora, by scooter on Raiatea and Rarotonga, by car on Moorea and Samoa, by bus on Tahiti... Climbed on coconut palms, had some beers, chatted with the locals, took many sunbaths onboard the ship, and made new friends. I even met bears!!! You find my cruise stories on my Australia & Oceania page, and all about the various islands we visited on the respective destination pages.
26 July 2010 - I have my own website now!!!
Exciting news: I now also have a German website named www.kimiderreisebaer.de. During the summer holidays in Germany I have a travel series in SÜDWEST PRESSE newspaper which sells more than 360,000 copies daily.
You can also find me on Facebook. My name is: Kimi Abel.
Big News, 3 October 2009
Just back from a five week holiday in Germany and celebrating my 21st birthday :-))) On the way to Germany I had a stop-over in Sydney. I met up with VT friends Wallywombat and Lynnehamman, and also caught up with some furry locals. The greatest encounter was sitting on a tree with a koala. In Germany I had meetings with VT members Christine and her little koala, Kathrin and my friend Russell the Wombat. - Mid November: All photos of those travels are posted, VT meetings on Sydney, Göppingen and Stuttgart pages.
I am a little grey bear who was born in South Korea. I grew up in Germany, and now I am living in New Zealand.
In South Korea I was known as "Mister Kim". The people are very polite and formal there and would not call anybody with his first name.
I did not know my bear parents. I suspect I was kidnapped, and had to live with humans who were not terribly interested in me. They only wanted to make money, and put me up for sale in Itaewon, Seoul. There my new mommy - I call her Mama - discovered me because I have such a lovely smile. So she bought me, and since that time I live with her. Her name is Sissi, and she is VT member Kakapo2.
She took me to Germany, and when she married a Kiwi guy named John, I moved to New Zealand with her. There and, of course, in his family nobody would have called me "Mister Kim", and so I soon got the name Kimi.
I have always enjoyed travelling, and my parents take me everywhere. So I have already travelled by airplane, train, ferry, car, motorbike and bus.
As I am very curious - apart from being a bit greedy, loving meat and honey - I have discovered a lot of interesting things in my new home country. And as I love to be photographed I have to show you a lot of beautiful pictures.
Mama has taken thousands of photos of me. So I am nearly a professional model, and to justify why I permanently ask for food I call my travelling and posing work. Mama has put a book about me together, an English and a German version. It is called "Kimi discovers Kiwiland" and "Kimi bei den Kiwis". Unfortunately she has not found a publisher yet although they love the idea and the photos. Some say they want me as watercolour paintings. But I am no watercolour painting! I am REAL!
Still, I have not given up the hope to become a star someday. In the meantime I keep on travelling and eating.
My first VT friends
My first friends on VT were Russell_the_Wombat and his mommy Kathrin. They live in Karlsruhe in Germany. We got in touch because we also have such a wombat named Russell in the household. Russell and Kathrin encouraged me to start my own page, and finally I could convince Mama to assist me a little :-)
In the meantime I have found some more VT friends, and like the first ones, they are not all animals. I even attended my first VT meeting on 16 December 2008. A date to remember :-)
I also have a penpal in Germany. His name is Jo (Jonathan) and lives in Ulm. He visited us in New Zealand some years ago. I hope he will come back soon.
The second person on this picture is Sissi, my Mama. The photo was taken some years ago at the start of my career as a posing travel bear, at a waterfall near Takaka in the Abel Tasman National Park. On this trip I also climbed on trees and did other exciting stuff. I often do so much that I get so tired that in the end Mama has to carry me in her backpack.
BTW Mama would never allow me to travel in a suitcase because you never know where they end up on a flight. She would rather leave me at home with a fridge full of food than check me in in a suitcase. You see, she knows that I am absolutely irreplaceable.
Travelling by mail would even be a bigger no-no. Last year two parcels from Germany got lost on the way to our house in New Zealand. Imagine I had been in such a parcel!
As you should know by now, I am a very special bear and personality. I do not only have a nice selection of scarves for travelling. I also get a custom-made birthday cake every year. On my 19th birthday I got 19 muffins decorated with gummi bears, this one you see on the photo is from an earlier birthday.
Although I am greedy I do not eat my cakes alone but share them with my many siblings (who are also rather greedy BTW). There are more bears, apes, monkeys, koalas, a penguin, Russell the Wombat, a tiger, a mouse, and also a very important doll named Uschi. She is 46 years old and has a wardrobe full of clothes. She is the secret boss, and with her small and hard fingers she can type perfectly on the laptop's keyboard whereas I often press several keys with one stroke.
My birthday on 3 October 2009 was very special to me because I turned 21. You might think this is rather grown up - but it does not apply to me. I have always tried to remain younger than my actual age because this guarantees more pampering. As you see, I am also rather small, so it would be unfair to expect adult behaviour. Bring on more gummi bears!
(Psssssssst... I only say I am over 18 when I want a sip from Papa's beer...)
You can surely imagine that - due to the same first name - I am a supporter of Kimi Räikkönen in Formula 1, and how delighted I was when I spotted this pile of Kimi sweatshirts at a fan shop at Changi Airport, Singapore. That was in the good old times when Kimi still raced for McLaren Mercedes and not in those rubbish Ferrari cars - which has changed again this year (2012) when Kimi was hired by Lotus Renault. And today (5 November 2012), in Abu Dhabi, he won his first Grand Prix since his retirement from Formula 1 in 2009! A great day for Kimi and Kimi!
Regarding the Ferrari, it is like with so many nice things from Italy: They look fantastic but are not very reliable. Mama already had to throw out two expensive Italian espresso machines, and the Italian hob had to be repaired, and she does not go into detail with Italian guys ;-) But she loves Ferrari's red colour.
Although I look good with red scarves, I liked the Mercedes style because the Silberpfeil matched my grey fur, and of course, those German engines are better ;-) Papa keeps on supporting them because New Zealanders would always support McLaren, because Bruce McLaren was a Kiwi. I would only support Heikki Kovalainen because he is Finnish like Kimi. I do not like Lewis Hamilton, he is not competing in a very fair way on the track. And as he always tries to win over Kimi and even push him from the track it is impossible for me to support him.
Unexpected update on this one - Nov. 2009
I would never have expected that Papa would say he cannot support McLaren next season. He says it is not acceptable that Lewis Hamilton and Jensen Button will be the two drivers - although we all like Jensen Button. My sister Sidnee says he has a lovely smile. Anyway. I will be forced to go on strike as it seems that Kimi will not race at all and cash in billions or trillions for not racing. (Another update: Ok, I have now decided to support Nico Rosberg, and Papa supports Sebastian Vettel.) I hate Ferrari!!! I start saving for a Porsche... Sniff :-(((
And as mentioned earlier - another update (5 Nov 2012): I have forgotten which team Papa is actually supporting :-((( Sorry. But I wanted to say, now I am - of course! - supporting my all-time favourite Kimi Räikkönen again. My number two is Sebastian Vettel. I think he is the nicest guy of all drivers - even nicer than Kimi...
My travel pages on VT will give you a full introduction into life, nature and culture in New Zealand. Soon I will add some pages about the islands of the South Pacific. Mama took me on a three week cruise to Bora Bora, Tahiti and other such dream islands in June (2009). It was veeeeery exciting!
But back to New Zealand. I have been nearly everywhere, and also had to get through some hair-raising adventures. I was even bungy-jumping. But the most dangerous encounter was when a weka - a flightless but greedy bird - bit me in the ear. I still like them but I prefer to watch them from a little distance.
I am also a little afraid to pose in high winds. Although I eat a lot of everything, and love sweets, I am a very light-weight bear. So it would not be a very clever idea to sit on a cliff in a Norwesterly or a Southerly, as the very strong warm and cold winds are called in New Zealand. It was also scary to sit on the Moeraki Boulders at high tide, when the sea was raging around the boulders. But I am sure, Mama would try to save me if I fell into the water.
One of my proudest moments was when a Maori group named KoTane introduced me to their culture. One of them even pressed his nose against mine. This greeting is called hongi.
As birdwatching is Mama's biggest hobby (and bird feeding...), I often get out into their habitats with her. As said earlier, once a weka bit me in the ear. I had rather expected a kea bite or even kill me because they are such cheeky parrots. But can you believe, they take food from all those huge humans' hands, and they are afraid of me! When they see me little bear they jump back a metre. I must only put my head out of the car, and they already retreat. Even if they are hungry and tempted to take food from anyone, they would not take anything I offer them. On this photo you see a kea as close as he dared to get towards me, although I had some bread on my paw. If they knew that I am so much more afraid of them than they are of me!
I will tell you about all those adventures and more on my New Zealand pages.
Update Nov 2012: More bird bites!
Just to let you know that in the meantime a second weka has bitten me in the ear, and earlier this year a little robin hopped onto me and attacked both my ears on Stewart Island!!! I really wonder what is wrong with my ears. They are small and not offensive at all!
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