Saturday, September 23
Hi all! Well, we've made it back to the states in one piece! We had a great last few nights in Wellington with the flatties (minus a phil dickens and plus an equally hilarious frenchman and german chick!) and those few nights will have to stay with us until everyone comes to visit us here!! :) (okay, so CP might not visit unless we live in Colorado or Utah where they have some kick ass mountain biking, but hey, one can hope!). It's weird thinking that NZ is really in our past, especially the 29a flat! It seems that we left and went back there so many times that this last goodbye was just another temporary one---really gutted knowing that it's not. The ride to the airport was weird---molly and I both felt like we were going to throw up. Ugh---but anyways, onto the happy stuff!!! Our stop over in Fiji was great---a little rough around the edges the first few nights but hey, that's the price we were willing to pay to have our own little slice of paradise! We had 3 days and 2 nights on Kutra Island where we had our own "bure"---sounds nice doesn't it? haha...don't be fooled!! The location was awesome and the Bure was definitely "doable" but lets just say that we checked under the covers for creepy crawlers before going to sleep! The island "resort" was run by locals and not only did they cook 3 meals a day for us, but they were constantly playing and singing music for us and giving us a peek into their traditions and culture. We spent the first day lazing on the beach soaking up the sun and snoozing in the hammocks. It didn't take us long to get into "Fiji Time". We didn't sleep much at all that night--expecially after hearing something scrurry across our bag! And because the island was run on a genreator, there was only power between 6pm and 11pm---so the best light we had to try to find what made the noise was the light from our camera. Haha...we passed the time until sunrise by telling stories that in no way involved large bugs of any sort!! It was a bit cloudy in the morning but we still made the hike up to the island summit for the sunrise and it was beautiful.
Later that day we went to another island where we hooked up with a Dive company! We didn't think we'd be able to squeeze a dive into this trip but are THRILLED we did!! It was BEAUTIFUL!! I was slightly nervous---especially since it was my first "flip backwords into the water from this excuse for a boat" dive. AND since we couldn't understand a damn word our dive master was saying!! haha! But it was really cool, b/c as soon as we got underwater, we understood him perfectly. It's such a cool thing having this underwater language across boarders! And it was only the 3 of us which was great. Saw some great coral, lots of clown fish (I heart Nemo's!), a really big moray, and a HUGE lobster. I'm still SHOCKED at the size of this thing---and according to our guide, that was a small one!! Pretty sure we would have heard the underwater screams of Ron and Dad if they were lobstering and spotted this thing!!! I can't even tell you how big it was!!! Can you tell that I'm just in amazement?! haha! The next day we did some kayaking and visited the nearby village (2 islands away) where they still follow the traditions of their ancestors (well, most of them anyways!). We took a trip to the school which I just loved! The kids were running all around us and just kept coming up and grabbing our hands and saying "Bula" (Fijian for Hi). Too cute! For our last night in Fiji (and the last of our time abroad) we decided to splurge!! We stayed at the Sheraton Fiji Resort and it was worth every penny!! Of course it wasn't as untouched or remote as Kutra but it was great to have a nice shower and a GREAT night sleep! Not to mention full range of all the pools and bars!! Our plane left last night at 10pm and we pretty much slept for the whole time. We're now in LA at my friend Ronnie's and tomorrow we are taking the train to San Diego to see Jules!!! (wouldn't it just be crazy if MB, Megs, and Jarrod were there too?!??! :) JUST SAYING!!!). We'll be making the rounds here for a few days before heading to Philly. If you need to find me, mol's cellphone works: 812 322 3960 but we probably shouldn't kill all of her minutes!! So I'll do my best to find you all in the next few days/weeks!
WEIRD!!! :) lovelove
Sunday, September 17
(More pics are up at http://photos.yahoo.com/mollyfoos under "end of NZ")
Hello all! We have made our way back to christchurch and will be staying in our old flat until we head off to Wellington--which is in 4 days! Our "last horay" around the south island was great. We managed to re-visit our favorite places (Lake Tekepo, Mt. Cook, Milford Sound, Wanaka, the Glaciers) and do a few things that we didn't do the first 2 times around! We visited the Caitlins for the first time but unfortunately, the weather and the tides were working aganist us. But seeing as we only has a few days of rain, we were okay with that. But even with the yuck weather, we were able to get really close to 2 yellow-eyed penguins at a hide (same one we were at mom and ry) and were just loving that!! We got to see some great sunrises and sunsets and I've become quite addicted to dawn and dusk!! We drove the 2 hours from Te Anau to Milford Sound (and had to get chains for our tires--we didn't get to use them but it was fun nonetheless!) and b/c it was rather wet and rainy, we were SURROUNDED by water falls! We did an overnight cruise in Milford and while it didn't come close to our Doubtful Sound cruise (how could we top that!?) it was still awesome. We got to see a handful of Fiordland Crested Penguins (the rarest in the world) for the first time and the waterfalls were just pouring out all around us. The weather cleared in the morning so we got a nice view of all the snow covered peaks and our drive back to Te Anau was beautiful! We met a girl from Scotland on the cruise (she tried to convince us to jump in the water--then wussed out herself!!) and wound up giving her a ride back from Milford. Always fun picking up an extra for a little bit! After Milford, we made our way to Queenstown, where, you guessed it---we flung ourselves off of a bridge!!!! It was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!! I couldn't help but think of those crazy boy cousins of mine! Johhny and Michael--you would have LOVED IT!! After the bungy jump, we headed off to the Glaciers and set up a day walk on Fox Glacier. Complete with spikes on our boots and walkng picks, we made our way high up onto the glacier. I have to say--it was nothing like I expected! I had this image of a nice leasurely walk across the flat part off a glacier---um, no! Our guide was cutting "steps" as we walked, and we were stepping (or jumping if you happen to be short like me!) across these big crevices that were either filled with water, or went down for hundreds of meters! I have to say, it got my heart racing more then once! Good times! We ended our trip with a fabulous tour around Monteith's Brewery and for 10 bucks, it was WELL worth it!! Especially since we got to taste 8 beers afterwards and had free range of the bar for a few minutes!
So now, it's all about living up our last few days in christchurch---and selling everything we possibly can!! Our car (tear--good ol mills!) was a success and after only a few hours on TradeMe (kinda like Ebay), someone came to look and offered us a fair amount for it. I'm sure we could have gotten a bit more if we waited it out but it's nice that it's done and as it works out, we got to have a car for almost a year for $250 bucks each. Not too shabby! We have 4 days to make everything we have fit into small bags! If you saw the 2 rooms we've taken over with our stuff, you would only be able to laught at us!! It'll be a misison for sure!
Hope all is well at home! Hope everyone is keeping their eyes open for jobs!! Especially if it involves soccer or ski slopes!! God knows I'm not ready for a "real" job just yet!!