The last few days have been a blur. Jim and I flew out of Dallas on December 1 and, through a series of connections, ended up in Brisbane, Australia where we had a nine-hour layover. Luckily one of our dear friends, Mandie, lives there and was able to pick us up at the airport and show us around.
Brisbane was a lot cooler than I expected. Apparently their summer has been very rainy, which was pleasant for us. I much prefer 75 degrees to 90 degrees. In less than nine-hours we managed to see most of Brisband, eat lunch, mail off postcards and check out some thrift stores or “op-shops” as they call them.
It was so lovely to spend the day with Mandie whom we have not seen in two-years.
After a grand day in Australia we were ready for our final flight to Auckland! Our plane was delayed over an hour, but, luckily, our friends Kristen and Nick were not deterred and waited for us at the airport. By the time we made it back to their house it was 3AM!
Sometimes I feel like the luckiest girl in the world. The two cities that we flew into half way across the globe are where we have dear friends with whom to spend time. Kristen and Nick have a beautiful house in Auckland where we are going to at least spend the next week. We are supposed to make it to Wellington to meet up with our friends at some point but life has already proven so easy here I wouldn’t be surprised if we get sucked in for a couple of weeks.
Today was our first full day in New Zealand and it was amazing! I managed to wake up around 9AM and didn’t feel too jet lagged. I tagged along with Kristen and Nick to a dance class, which has lines of three and the instructor demonstrates the moves and people follow him down the studio. Most of the participants are obviously experienced dancers and some of the moves were difficult to do, but what a great start to my time in New Zealand! I got a good work out and met some interesting people.
Later today six of us piled into a car and drove to Bethells Beach where we explored caves and hills. The countryside of New Zealand is breathtaking. When we first arrived at the beach it was drizzling rain and a fine mist was wafting off the ocean and over the sand. It reminded me a lot of San Francsico.
We found one cave that you could walk all the way through and it led to a secluded beach. When leaving the secluded beach to walk back through the cave we got caught in the tide change and it made for an adventurous exit!
I have been in New Zealand less than 24-hours but I love it already. There is so much to do and natural beauty to behold. I can’t wait to write more about our adventures of hiking, swimming and exploring.