My, what a busy year it has been! I began my 31st year on a crowded plane on its way to Australia. Yes, it's true. I boarded that United flight on February 6th and arrived in Australia on February 8th. My birthday (the 7th) was truly non-existent! Does that mean I'm still 30? Yes, I think I'll make that an official rule. So, from now on you will find me boarding a flight to the other side of the earth every February 6th!
I spent time in Melbourne at a XanGo Convention, which was really quite nice. I love the city, but they have been in a drought the last, oh, 10 years or so, so it was really quite brown. We made friends with some of the local singles who took us on a little tour of a Coney Island type of area. My favorite part was seeing tiny little fairy penguins who made their homes in the rocks off of the pier. I had never been so close to the teeny things!
After 4 days in Australia, I boarded a flight heading for Auckland, New Zealand. Kiwiland! I was able to stay with Darlene Hawea's mother, Celia (bless her heart). She was wonderful! I met so many wonderful people there that I will not soon forget. I also ate food that I will never be able to find here in the states. Rarr!
Celia lives in Temple View - a village of Mormon's right next to Hamilton. The temple is beautifully set in this picturesque place. I loved the time I spent there. It made me feel like I was in Laie for some reason. It was really quite different as far as homes, etc., but it felt so much like home to me - the only thing I could liken it to was my first home in Laie, Hawaii.
After being there almost two days, my co-worker and friend Courtney Benson joined me. We stayed at Celia's for another day and then we were on our way to Rotorua for more culture and beautiful scenery. My, I've decided that I could definitely live in such a place. There is so much more that I was able to see, but so little patience to actually write it. Tata!