Ken Boogers Incident
After I left, Ken stayed in New Zealand, and, soon after, he died in the wilderness. He slipped and fell from a cliff. Later I had contact with his mother, who had a hard time letting go of him. To this very day, I still feel sorry that I couldn’t give her more than just some footage of her son I took back in Nelson/NZ.
Anyhow – in Guerrero Negro, I was only capturing the story to the point where I first met him. I felt like I needed some more time to think of the best way to describe what special meaning this man and his tragic death had in my own personal story.
The next day something strange happened. Early in the morning, I was roaming the city with my camera. The town was celebrating the revolution and held a big parade. When I came back to the camper with literary hundreds of pictures of kids with toy guns and fake mustaches, Jens was hanging out with two guys. I realized I saw those guys before because we saw them along our route, hitchhiking with their surfboards under their arms. You don’t see many people doing that here. Well, guess what? Both guys are from New Zealand.
While sitting in Guerrero Negro, this happened.
We started talking about our journeys, and I mentioned my trip through the wilderness on the north island of New Zealand. I admitted that I underestimated the weather back then and that I put myself in danger by doing so – I knew that every year a lot of foreigners die in New Zealand because of that.
That seemed to be the keyword for one of those guys because he mentioned a very tragic case of a guy from the Netherlands. I said: “You are talking about Ken Boogers, right?” The Kiwi made big eyes and said: “Exactly! How do you know?” Well, I know because I met him right before he died, and I am currently just writing about him. It got even weirder because the father of one of those two guys I just met here in Baja California was responsible for the investigation of Ken’s case. Talking about coincidences, what are the odds!? We are talking about a timeframe of fewer than 24 hours.