A week on of being here, and I finally got to ride on proper trails yesterday, and it couldn’t have been more fun. We took my roommates truck up to a local spot to shuttle runs on a simple track, and while it wasn’t difficult, it sure was fun – a good way to kick off the Second Summer!
Mixed in with the thrill of riding, was the nerve-wracking experience of driving down here in eNZed for the first time…everything is backward and I was so tense driving, it was like being a student driver all over again. But, I managed, and all ended well.
I also finally have all of the mountain passes and trail maps sorted out, so the real fun is on the horizon now that I’m decently settled in.

I’m slowing becoming a regular at certain eateries.  

This will probably be the only time I complain about being right next to the bike path: there was a marathon being run across the region, and I was awoken by people cheering and rattling cowbells at 7:30 this morning…that was a first. Once awake (after over sleeping of course), we had a Flatmate Day. The activities list included, story telling around the kitchen table, laughing about how the runners were getting soaked by unrelenting rain, and of course, a trip to the shopping center for some mind shenanigans and home improvements. It was a solid afternoon of bonding.
The real story of the weekend is a reunion of two friends and former coworkers on the other side of the World! All the way in from BVT (studying abroad in Dunedin here in NZ), my friend and former EMS coworker Lauren dropped into Queenstown for the weekend to visit – and to go bungee jumping. It is always wonderful to catch up with someone, but it was definitely surreal to meet up at bottom of the globe! While her stay was short-lived, it was certainly lively, with a first night out in the town (replete with heckling on the street, awkward dancing, and a little bit of judgment), and a much more mellow second night. Oddly enough though, tonight (the second night) was the night where we interacted with the local police, but fear not, bail is cheap here…I’m kidding, Lauren lost her purse and some people were nice enough hand it off to the 5-0, from whom we were able to retrieve the lost goods. But, that was not until I had sprinted 3 blocks, literally chasing the only cop car out in town, and finally shouting at a group of girls ahead to stop The Fuzz for me. The officers were quite confused initially as a long-haired male explained between gasps of airs about a lost purse, but it all worked out in the end. Just another casual Saturday night!
Tonight is also one of the first clear nights of weather I’ve had while down here, and the sky is just amazing. It is interesting to notice the difference in the stars of the Southern Sky, I’m hoping I can figure out how to photograph the night’s sky, as the view of the heavens from my room is magnificent! Until then, here is a picture of Lauren drinking a Long Island Ice Tea out of a tea pot:

From East Coast to Far East – reunited!