Sunday, October 9, 2011

26 Days

About a month ago it started to sink in that we will soon be uprooting ourselves as our visas near their expiry date.  We have just shy of a month left before we head back to the US and make Portland, Oregon our new home.  It took me about 4 months to really start to feel settled here, slowly various things, people, and places became familiar and the norm.  I learned to live without things I had previously taken for granted or just hadn't thought of living without, like central heating and a clothes dryer, and to incorporate new things into my daily life that I have come to love, like bike/walk/bus commuting and having an electric bed heater!  There are other things I will miss about this place too.  Things like:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

One Lovely Saturday

Several weeks ago Nick and I took a train trip from Dunedin to Pukerangi, just to get out of town for a few hours.  The train, run by the Taieri Gorge Railway, makes its way south of town, where it passes by several farm paddocks (we spotted our first baby lambs of the lambing season!) before heading inland through the Taieri Gorge.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Marked by an anticipated snowfall in the mountains, winter has finally arrived here on the South Island of Aotearoa.  It briefly snowed today in Dunedin, however it did not stick to the ground.  I have been told it rarely does.   
We found some snow on the hills above
Dunedin this weekend

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Impromptu Road Trip

This past week Nick and I were lucky to have found ourselves with time off from work and decided to go on a little road trip adventure.  We packed a lot into our 8 day adventure, here are some of the highlights.
These rocks are located in a farmer's paddock.  This is Nick making his way through the crack between these rock.
Can you see the elephant?

Monday, May 2, 2011

Weekend Adventures!

Having just spent the last 9 years of my life in Juneau, where you must travel by boat or plane if you wish to go beyond the main 47 mile stretch of road, I have come to appreciate roads, that is those that connect to other places.  Of course part of the charm of Juneau, in my  opinion, is the fact that it is quite isolated, due to the proximity of the sea, steep mountains, glaciers and icefield, which make building a road that connects Juneau to other places difficult.  [For those who are not from Juneau, there has been ongoing debate for a very long time about building a road from Juneau]  Needless to say, I rarely found myself craving the open road while in Juneau because the landscape just didn't allow it and I was quite content hiking on familiar trails and viewing the glacier, well that never got old.  Now, living in Dunedin, I have fallen into the habit of leaving town for the open road just about every other weekend.  
From a mountain south of Dunedin, looking over farmland.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

my mihimihi

I recently took a brief, one day, introduction to te reo Māori, or the Māori language.  In this class I learned about basic pronunciation, how to say some colors, and how to construct my mihimihi.  A mihimihi is and introduction, a way to make links with others, a statement of who you and where you are from in relation to several things.  Some of these things include a mountain and water source that you associate with being home, your nationality or ethnicity, and your whakapapa (family and genealogy/ancestry).
Mt. Washington, one of my mountians
Mendenhall Glacier, one of my rivers

Monday, March 21, 2011

It's like Lord of the Rings!

If you have ever watched Flight of the Conchords, you may have noticed a facetious poster on Murray’s office wall that features a lovely photo of New Zealand landscape with the caption: New Zealand, It’s like Lord of the Rings.  As I have traveled and tramped in various places in NZ, I have overheard many a traveler gasp and claim, “wow, it’s like lord of the rings!”  Meanwhile, I made a point to not say those six words, knowing how cliché they are.  After all, before we came here and briefly after telling someone we were heading to New Zealand, they would inevitably state, “you know that’s where lord of the rings was filmed” or “I’ve heard it’s just like lord of the rings there.”  Then we went to the Matukituki Valley for a weekend of tramping and camping and there I was unable to contain myself as I exclaimed, this is like lord of the rings!  See for yourself…

Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Photo Tour of Dunedin

Welcome to a photo tour of a few parts of Dunedin!  Dunedin is a very large city land wise and is made up of many diverse suburbs.  Population wise, Dunedin has about 100,000 people living here year round and about another 25,000 students who come for the academic year.  Here are some photos from St. Clair, the "inner city" as they call it here (also known as downtown), Maori Hill, and the Otago Peninsula.  

St. Clair beach looking south

St. Clair Beach looking north

Friday, February 4, 2011


When moving to a new place, there are inevitably changes or adaptations that occur in our behavior, language, and perspectives of everyday things.  Sometimes these changes are deliberate and quite consciously made.  For example, I now drive and ride my bike on the left hand side of the road, I use the expression “can I make you a cuppa?” when interacting with New Zealanders (most especially the elderly folks I work with), and I have decided hanging your washing out on a line is far superior to using a clothes dryer.  Other changes

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


This might be rather cliché, but I must have an entry devoted entirely to sheep.  Sheep abound in New Zealand, well at least in the places I’ve been to on the south island so far.