The pictures. There were more, but various people didn't want their faces plastered all over the internet.
This is a conglomerate of several posts I wrote on Kylie's forum about my trip to New Zealand. Thanks to Kylie for helping me organize it.
In December I flew to New Zealand for three weeks. For most of the time I lived with Kylie (tt&t). It was a lot of fun, and NZ is awesome, and beautiful, and I'm going to marry Steve so I can live there forever. At least, he didn't say no so I'm assuming that's the plan...
So. My brother drove me to Nashville where I boarded a plane to Memphis where I boarded a plane to Los Angeles. I hate the Los Angeles airport. Really. It's big and you have to get on a bus or walk a reallylongway to get between terminals. The Atlanta airport is *so* much better arranged. Anyway. Had to switch terminals. Waited in a huuuge Qantas line. But I finally got onto the plane to Auckland and then we had to wait like an hour for people from some flight that was delayed to get on the plane and eventually the pilot decided we'd waited long enough and closed the door which meant I got a whole row of seats to myself. Woohoo! But I was nice and let one person have the other half. So that was a long flight and it's not so much fun sleeping in a chair.
But then I got to Auckland at 6am and bought tequila and wine which I'm allowed to do there because the drinking age is 18. I went through customs and then walked out into this giant sea of people and there were Polynesian women with leis. And then I saw Whitcoulls which is where we were supposed to meet and I started walking over to it, but then this girl who looked a lot like the pictures of Kylie started walking toward me so I stopped. Then she hugged me and said (paraphrasing) "You *are* Sarah, aren't you?" One would think she'd ask that before hugging, but luckily I *was* Sarah.
And then Tickle appeared and had shaved to confuse me. Cos Kylie had said "I'll be the one with the tall bearded guy". At least he's tall. And he took my bag for me and we left the airport to go to his car. So we drove away from the airport and Kylie doesn't like talking to people with sunglasses on so when she turned around to talk to me she had to hold them above her eyes. They'd decided to go back to Tauranga via Coromandel, which is where they had been before getting up at 4am to come and pick me up. So we went to the beach and it was beachy and nice. And I met some of Tickle's family at their bach and I remember having good cheese and playing cricket. His little kid relatives are cute. I don't remember what relation. Also, advice for everyone: make sure to shave your legs before going to visit someone in case they take you to the beach first thing. Luckily his family was really nice and let me use their shower. So, the beach. It was pretty and rocky. I haven't been to a rocky beach before. And we walked and talked and it was fun. And there were these things called I think pipis that are apparently some kind of shellthing. And then we laid... lied... lay... down on the road because it was warm but we were going to walk to the store or was that afterward? I think it was before, yeah, it was before. So the road was warm and I remember Tickle saying to move closer. That was because I was in the middle of the road and could potentially be run over by cars that were so confused by people laying... lying in the road that they forgot how to stop and then I would die. And there were also stupid boys in a house across the road who threw rocks. But then we walked to the store and talked and walked and stuff. I think Kylie bought seaweed crackers at the store. Seaweed crackers! those things are awesome. I got some here when I got back, but they aren't as good. The first thing I'm eating when I get back to New Zealand is seaweed crackers and cheese. Or maybe tequila.
So after the store and cheese and crackers and beach and road we left Coromandel and headed to Tauranga and we went to Tickle's house, I think, and then Kylie and I headed to her house. It was pretty late by this point. Like 10 maybe. Ha! 10 late! It's 3:33 in the morning right now and I don't think it's late. Time is different in New Zealand. So I met her family. Oh wait I forgot part of the Coromandel stuff. I bought a Vodafone plan for my phone and I swear the guy in the store was leering at Kylie. And we got fish and chips and ate them in the park except I didn't have any fish. I didn't eat very much the first day. I was too nervous. Kylie kept asking if I was still scared of her. And I was really quiet. And I'm sure it was obvious I was nervous. I think that might have been in Thames, which is the only town name I remember from Coromandel because Kylie and Tickle kept saying it over and over and pronouncing it how it's spelled instead of like tims. Oh and the road through Coromandel is *really* windy. Not windy. Like curvy windy. Not air. Kylie asked if I got carsick and I said no, which isn't entirely true because I can get carsick if I read but I didn't think I'd be reading so I felt saying no was safe. And I didn't get carsick, but I felt a little sick at points.
But anyway back to meeting her family. I was pretty scared but they seemed nice and then Kylie fixed us both sandwiches but I couldn't eat mine because I was still really nervous and didn't feel like eating and I felt really bad because she had gone to the trouble of making it for me and then I wouldn't eat it but she said it was okay. So then I think we went to bed. And that was the first day. I have no idea what happened on the second day. That would be a Thursday. Oh. It *was* the second day I was there that we went to the winery, wasn't it? So I do know what happened the second day I was there.
We sampled lots of wine at Mills Reef Winery. I *maybe* got tipsy. Kylie and Tickle noticed I got a lot more talkative after I had wine. And it was really hot. Kylie says I was drunk. Then Paul got there the next day, and we shared the wine Kylie bought from Mills Reef when we were there. Paul's nice.
Then New Years. There was tennis and table tennis and lots of people and a pig on a spit. And a little bit of drinking. I remember standing in the doorway to the lounge not having any idea when midnight was exactly, and then everyone cheered and Kylie hugged me so I assumed it had happened. And then I got hugged by various other people. I went to bed about three different times, and Kylie's mum was worried about me. Paul got injured in a balloon fight and limped around the rest of the night. Kylie tells me she ran around in her dressing gown, but I have no memory of it. Later on Kylie made me sleep with a bowl by my bed in case I threw up. And then she took a picture of me sleeping with a bowl by my bed.
We also went to Brews Blues and Barbeques some time in January, which is an annual beerfest. This is where we found out that I drink faster than everyone. But it's Kylie's fault because she told me to skull it. First we had Tui, which is pretty good. And cider is good, too. Wine isn't. Neither is apple schnapps. After Brews Blues we went to the Grumpy Mole which is a bar/club type thing. So we got even more drinks and stood around and then Kylie and Steve started dancing a bit. Interesting fact: in addition to being able to sing, Kylie can also dance. She tried to get me to dance, but all she succeeded in doing was getting me to tap my foot. I promise if we go back I'll try to dance. By that point I was incredibly drunk, and it was pretty late. Kylie was drunk, too, but I'm pretty sure she wasn't as drunk as me. Unless she was hiding it. And we had some water. Then we said bye to Steve and took a cab home. And in the morning I had a pretty bad hangover, while Kylie had none. And they made fun of me. And Toni had a water gun, with which she "got" me because I was too sick to run away.
But before Brews Blues I went to Wellington with Paul (6 hours south of where Kylie lives) and took the ferry to the South Island. In the South Island I took a bus down to Christchurch, where I walked around for a day. Then I went on a day trip Akaroa, which was founded by French settlers, and took a harbour tour. And then the next I flew back to the North Island where Kylie picked me up from the airport.
Oh, an anecdote before I forget it. The tour guide in Christchurch was talking to me about Tennessee and was trying to think of things/people from there and he makes a motion with his hands in front of his chest and asks who the person is with "the big boobies". Dolly Parton, for those of you who don't know.
I also went on a tour of Rotorua where I got to see lots of mud and steam and sheep. Remember twinky's pictures of sheep from when he went to NZ? I saw those same sheep.
The rest of the time we played lots of tennis (which is lots of fun on a grass court) and 500, and just hung out. And gouda cheese is awesome. So are seaweed crackers, and wine. And especially tickle, who drove me and Kylie around lots. We went to the hotpools a few times and the beach too. Kylie is right when she says you should get in fast and put your head under, and then it won't be so cold. We went kayaking once, and I didn't drown. Nor did I fall off when we went horse riding. Kylie told me I'd be safe both times but I didn't believe her.
And she took me to a horse show where I got to see her come third in one round and then get thrown off and carried off to hospital in an ambulance in the last round. She had to stay overnight, but she was okay.
New Zealand is definitely awesome. As is Kylie's family. And Kylie. And Tickle. And Steve. And Paul. And the rest of her friends. And Watties spaghetti on toast. And steak with peanut sauce. I just realized I'm hungry. And L&P. I drank all of my bottle of it. Sad. I'm so moving to New Zealand and becoming a citizen. And I'm not kidding.
Here's where I confirm NZ's extreme awesomeness. Also that Steve didn't, in fact, say no. As I recall, what he said was "Sure, sounds like a good plan." This was in the back of the car on the way home from Blues Brews though, so I think Sarah should have to propose again. Romance is the key!
I'm glad you had so much fun Sarah, and well done for doing all that stuff you were scared of, even when I had to yell at you to make you do it (muahaha!). Also full credit for not throwing up in my room. I'm sure it was only because of the threats of making you sleep outside, though.
Great story. Great pics. I especially like the juggling on the tennis court ones. and I'm so glad you had fun doing things you were scared of... that's the best part!
Posts: 7919 | Registered: Mar 2004
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quote: I think that might have been in Thames, which is the only town name I remember from Coromandel because Kylie and Tickle kept saying it over and over and pronouncing it how it's spelled instead of like tims
That's kind of funny. Also, the English Thames is not "Tims" it's "Tems" although whether there's another pronounciation I don't know.
Posts: 8473 | Registered: Apr 2003
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quote:Does everyone in New Zealand drink that much? I mean...like...every day?
Not everyone, but a lot of them do. Where I might have a beer with dinner my Kiwi brothers might have three. "It's the Kiwi way, mate," one said to me as he handed me another can.
Posts: 10886 | Registered: Feb 2000
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quote: Does everyone in New Zealand drink that much? I mean...like...every day?
Hey, shh now, we left out at least half the drinking stories! Well, it was summer. And holidays!
Seriously though, no. We did drink about 6 times in the three weeks she was here but that's pretty excessive for me - but hey, she's not allowed to drink legally at home so why not eh.
Teshi, we also pronounce it Tems. ... Except when we're pronouncing it Thames to confuse Sarah who was too shy to correct us because it was her first day - apparently tickle and I are scary-lookin'.
Posts: 1431 | Registered: Aug 2003
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