Monthly Archives: March 2003

Having a Hangi – Rotorua, New Zealand

Kia Ora! A group of us got picked up by Hone Tewarihi Mirinit (aka. Wally) in Waka 94(aka. canoe aka. coach bus number 94). We were on our way to the traditional Maori Village for a night of culture, dancing, singing and food.

On the way out of Rotorua, we elected a chief from our waka and were briefed on the customs of the Maoris. We learned heaps of new words (ka pai = good, paki paki = applause, ai = yes ). We arrived to watch silently and solemnly as the Powhiri (formal welcome) took p read more

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Funky Green Medina – Rotorua, New Zealand

I was pretty impressed with the backpacker that I stayed at in Rotorua. I knew it was going to be an interesting stay when I had a strange alien conversation with the owner upon checkin. Funky Green Voyager was very eco-friendly and had just the right amount of quirks to make it feel homey. Chris even filled the kitchen with the delicious aroma of freshly baked muffins every morning. I became something of a fixture here. They asked me on several occasions if I wanted to move into the long-termer read more

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Writing on the Wall – Taupo, New Zealand

Arrived in Taupo and checked into discover I was in the same room as Nir, an old friend from Noosa. In keeping with tradition, we invited him and Mosh along with us for a walk to the Huka Falls. We laughed that every time I see him, I am on my way for a walk.

It was misting a bit so we took our rain suits but turned out we didn`t need them after all. First we watched the Bungee Jump which is 45 meters high. From here you get a gorgeous view overlooking the cliffs and cool blue Waikato River read more

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Kiwi Hospitality – Taupo, New Zealand

It was rainy and overcast as I trod up to the Reef Resort Motel. As I walked through the large sliding glass doors into the bright marble tiled lobby, I was reminded of elegant cruises I had enjoyed in the past. This is the difference between backpacking and holidaying. I think when you are travelling for so long, it is important to take a breather every now and then. To relax and be pampered is sometimes just the rejuvenating boost one needs when feeling just a little out of sorts.

I had read more

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Gone Fishin – Taupo, New Zealand

An early start as we all know the early bird gets the fish. Dan and Kelly from Michigan took me along with them on a 4 hour fishing trip in the worlds` trout fishing capital, Lake Taupo. International tournaments are held here on this picturesque lake every year. The lake is so large that you can fit the whole of Singapore into it.

We arrived at the dock and boarded our boat, White Striker, captained by Richard. On his business card, his job title is “Trout Catcher” and he does not lie. W read more

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Keep Left – Taupo – Wellington, New Zealand

After spending a very lax day exploring the shops in town, I leisurely strolled back to the motel with my nose in my book. Enjoyed a sumptuous lamb dinner prepared by Keren and Bryan. I enjoyed a hot spa before turning in.

I am amazed at how quiet and peaceful it is here. I can almost hear my thoughts forming. I thought it was supposed to be getting chilly here but it seems that the late summer is boosting temps. This is very good news because anyone who knows me understands my distaste f read more

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Lord of the Rings – Wellington, New Zealand

We passed the Embassy Theater where the LOTR Trilogy Premieres are held. I was impressed by the giant Golum crawling over the roof towards the street. His head must have been the size of a truck! Over top of the box office a large golden ring that I probably could have stood inside of was spinning around and around and around.

I finally watched Two Towers and am now even more (is it possible?) excited to get down to the South Island. I know that most of the film was made there and that many read more

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We are Travellers – Picton, New Zealand

I was feeling a little normal the other day…when it occurred to me that I was surrounded by amazing people on amazing journeys. I forgot how extraordinary this whole experience is. Shame on me. SO I wrote this for everyone who has ever had the courage to leave home. Even if it was just a short trek. Change can be very scary but how else can we grow?

Our shapes and sizes range from dwarf to giant
Our colors can be seen in the magnificent sunset pallet and brilliant rainbow spectrum
O read more

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Hammock Days at the Villa – Nelson, New Zealand

So Picton was a blast. Met some very warm people and had some great talks. Tried to play some guitar and did some poi. The walks were quite stunning and I even found a really good walking stick. As I wandered through the forest of leaves I could hear the bugs chirping. I could feel the energy in nature and it made me feel so healthy.

There were little birds walking down the path in a row…a whole family. I stopped to watch them and giggled at the baby at the end who couldn`t decide which read more

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Happy St. Paddys Day – Nelson, New Zealand

I have met so many Irish people in the past week its ridiculous! I mean, it`s funny that when you travel, it seems like you meet certain people from certain countries all at once sometimes. I have been meeting a lot of people from very close to where I live as well.

It`s really cool that I had lots of Irish people around me to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. The other day we went to an Irish pub and well, haven`t stopped drinking since. But taking a break now because although I don`t seem to g read more

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