Tim & Anja's New Zealand Adventure travel blog


Of course the holiday doesn't exist down here (no bbq's for us), but next weekend is the Queen's Birthday so we're looking forward to that. Apparently it's not the current Queen's birthday, as we saw on the news not long ago that she celebrated her special day last month with fireworks and a big party, but an old dead queen. Regardless, we get the Monday off, so it will be nice. It will be a rare day we both have off together, so we're planning something fun. Maybe a trip to the little alpine village of Arthurs Pass, or a drive into the Canterbury plains about an hour outside the city for a hike or just to check out the scenery and give Mystery Machine a break from city driving.

One exciting thing at work recently was a 'Bring a Plate' day. Yes, we would more commonly call it a potluck, but over here there is yet another different word for something familiar to us. As I work with mostly middle aged women who like to cook and bake, we had a verifiable feast for our morning tea. Cookies and assorted snacks all over the place, many of us didn't even need to eat lunch. Sadly that is the most exciting part of my work these days. Low stress, one day is practically the same as another. Something cool and different that might work out is some contract work that I am super qualifed for: having an American accent. Like I said before, I might be featured as a character in an animal training video. I went to an interview last week (more like a chat on the couch with two guys in their 20's) and apparently it is more marketable to make a DVD with voices other than the sometimes hard to understand kiwi accent talking about "why is my dog eating the couch", or "my dog barks a lot, how do I fix this". The ultimate role play, I guess you could say. What a hoot it would be if that works out. I also found a job lead for using my American accent in an ESL training video. Not nearly as fun sounding, but the pay is ridiculously high compared to my other meager wages - between $30 - $50 an hour. Woohoo!!

Recently we also got to see our old woofing hosts, Sue, Simon, baby Joel and little Ellie before they left for a 4 month trip back to England. Simon is on sabbatical from the university, and on their way back home to see relatives, they're stopping in the Pacific island of Raritonga. Apparently it's beautiful. The other island I recently learned about around these parts is Vanuata??? Ever heard of this one? Me neither. It was great to catch up with them, sad they will be gone until October, but hopefully we'll see them again when they come back. An unexpected benefit of seeing them was borrowing their electric blanket. We thank them every night when we dive into our toasty warm bed!!! It's oh so nice!!! A common discussion point here is the difference between electric blankets you sleep on top of, or ones you sleep underneath. I don't know about you, but I'm used to the ones that are in the covers over top of you, but here you lie on top of the heated blanket that is under the sheets. Oh I'm feeling good just thinking about it.

One other thing I like about the heated bed is it feels good on my sore muscles from soccer. It was another eventful game over the weekend, scoring two goals for my team in a 2-2 tie. I should have had more goals, but I'm liking the opportunity to just play a lot and meet some fun guys. The field was a muddy mess after a week of rain, and as is typical for my style of play, I was one dirty bugger after the game. I even drove by Anja's work to pick her up and tried not to get dirt all over the place. Her colleagues were quite impressed.

Another fun thing from last week was seeing the DaVinci Code. I'll just say I like the book much better, I probably spent too much time comparing the book with the movie and that took away a little of the enjoyment and suspense for me. We turned it into a nice dinner and movie occasion and after the 5:45 pm show hopped around the corner to a cozy café and enjoyed a super tasty pizza for dinner with a hot chocolate to top it off. Definitely a good deal, we might even go back again for another movie. One I want to see is "The World's Fastest Indian". I think it's probably old in the US now, but only slightly new on DVD over here.

Well, enough for now. Can't believe June is around the corner, wow!!



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