Christmas in New Zealand and other exciting things

Hello once again my lovely travelers. I have more updates for you!

We’ve just left the holiday season behind and are now transitioning into New Year festivities. This was my first Christmas away from home, without all my friends and family. It was certainly different and a little sad, also there was no snow, which just doesn’t seem right. But I had a fantastic day just the same.

I spent Christmas Eve in Tauranga with a friend. We had a drink or two with a few of his mates before grabbing a bite to eat (vegan nachos, very tasty) and heading to the beach. It seems I have very bad luck going to the beach on a nice day. Like my first visit to Tauranga, it was rather rainy and overcast on Christmas Eve.

But this didn’t stop us. We sat in the car park for a while enjoying another drink and watching the waves flop over onto the beach. After a while we did get out and walk on the beach, but just for a minute as it was rather windy and cold. I picked up a couple of shells and saw lots of sad, beached jellies, and got properly soaked because that’s what you do when you go to the ocean.

Christmas Day started off with me treating myself to pancakes and having a nice long Skype session with my family. I opened my Christmas presents and we all sipped on sparkling cider while we all chatted. After that it was time to party!

The Head Guide at Hobbiton, Teresa, hosted an Orphan Christmas for all of us here without family. So I spent the day with a group of fellow Hobbiton peeps. We all spent the day drinking and eating and playing games until the sun went down and we were all sufficiently knackered.

Gatherings like this help you learn a lot about the people you work with. For instance, I work with a bunch of heartless murderers. While playing a game of Mafia, I was ruthlessly killed because everyone thought I was the Mafia (apparently I looked really suspicious) and was out to get them. To be fair, I kind of deserved it. I had instigated the murder of two innocent villagers in previous games. But still! Not cool, guys, not cool.

(That last one is Scotch in a plastic, because I’m classy like that.)

I also learned that AJ, Shaun and Beth are solid frisbee partners, Emily will always bring top notch Scotch to a party, and that Teresa and her family know how to throw a rockin’ party. (Also there was a house with lots of Christmas lights across the street.)

This all brings us to today, my travelers. Today was a good mail day for me. I got a very nice Christmas card from my mother as well as a shirt I ordered a few weeks ago. Check it!

 

I came over with a small collection of stickers and have recently acquired two more. Do you think people will know I’m from out of the country based on my car?

IMG_4469

I also thought I’d post a few photos of Hobbiton just so you all have definitive proof I work there. Plus it’s gorgeous.

The money is a tip one of my work mates got and we both thought it was so cool they had music on the note. So I took a couple pictures.

That’s all the big news to report for now dear travelers. Thanks for keeping up with me. There will be more updates to come.

~Ren

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