I am reporting to you from my non-heated room in my Dunedin flat. Yes it’s summer, but the nights get down to about 40-50 degrees since we’re so close to the South Pole (!?!) (still in ferenheit, I’m not quite there yet). So here’s a recap on the last week:
Flight: Got a humiliating, totally violated full-body search/pat down in JFK because I turned my head in the stupid x-ray machine. Made friends with a French fam behind me, and we bonded over the intense embarrassment of being publicly felt up in an airport (ps, as per usual, my hair was in pigtails, even more awkward). When I finally got through, the Frenchies asked why I was searched, and I replied that my hair was so big that it must be full of secrets and got a laugh - Mean Girls is universal!
I think as a reward for toughing out the groping, as I can’t explain it any other way, I was suddenly upgraded to first class - which included down blankets, three course meals, lazy boys and a leather pant-clad and frosted-tipped Ewan McGregor. so for this good fortune, the next flight was cancelled. As we waited for hours in the terminal, the staff finally informed us that the pilot had misparked the plane, snapped off a filangee (Phoebs for life), and damaged the left landing gear. So the 350 of us were herded to an assortment of airport hotels and given massive meal credits to calm us into compliance. Spent the whole next day on a marathon flight next to a person I am convinced played Fred and George in HP, despite his attempts to convince me otherwise.
EnZed: This is, without a doubt, the most lushly fabulous place on the planet. The entire country is sensory overload. Arcadia orientation was in Rotorua, a geothermal hotspot three hours outside of Auckland. Went to the Agrodome farm show, where I met my soulmate in the form of a Southdown. Spent some time in the hot mineral pools next to our hotel, visited Geothermal Wonderland and Lady Knox Geyser, and saw some kiwi birds and tuotara, known as the living dinosaur.
Dunedin: this city is just a massive college town. I live in a house with other international students from Sweden, Germany, Canada and my kiwi host. The students have an affinity for smashing glass bottles on the streets, hugging strangers, drinking copiously and pushing each other down the street in shopping carts stolen from Countdown. Already went to the farmer’s market - the equivalent of heaven on Earth. With the amount of beer and wine consumption that seems standard here in combination with nonstop eating, I’ll be surprised if I can fit on the plane back home. Which would be fine by me, I would be perfectly happy to never leave. Ever.
I’m not going to be using US phone unless absolutely necessary. My NZ number is (NZ country code, don’t know what it is) 022-085-4536, and it’s super cheap to text, so hit me up.
I will do my best to be diligent about updating this with all my the Dunedin shananiganery. Sweet-as. and photos to come soon!