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Back! :D

Going for the student exchange programme was probably one of the best things I have ever made myself done, haha. I mean, I used to hate travelling, so this was quite a push for me. :P

I took photos of almost every house: they are all so pretty! It's like I jumped into the sims' world! And then, I realised that this is why you guys all build such beautiful houses: your houses are so beautiful in real life! :O


Oh, and it's true: NZ is a postcard everywhere!

So many first times for me! :D First time boarding a plane on my own, first time living in a different country without my family. It was also the first time I missed home, sigh.


University of Canterbury
First time that I knew campus life could be so wild. XD


Okeover Community Garden
First time that I joined a community garden and saw so many new vegetables.


Christchurch city centre
First time that I experienced aftershocks. (I was so excited, lol!)


Riccarton Sunday Market
First time that I ate honey straight from a honeycomb! (NZ is famous for the Manuka honey, I think.)


Geology field trip to Lyttelton harbour
First time that I saw such breathtaking scenery.


On a bus, travelling with my boyfriend during the term break
First time that I saw grazing animals. (I squealed the first time, lol!)


Can't remember where, hahaha
First time that I actually liked travelling


Ben Lomond
First time that I rode a horse! (This one wasn't mine, but it was the prettiest, hehe.)


Queenstown
First time that I saw seagulls and so many ducks!


First time that I felt endangered by bulls, haha. (Seriously, ALL cows turn to stare EVERY TIME you pass by and don't stop staring until you're like 5km away.)


Cardrona Valley Adventure Park
First time that I saw a monster truck!


First time that I saw a llama. (I didn't zoom in!!!)


First time that I even touched a goat, haha. (The llama and goat are owned by the monster truck owner [Ian Soanes, a stuntman], who let us into their pen and drove us on his quad bike to his house to feed his sheep and pony because we said we have never saw sheep up close. How amazingly nice is that?!)


Dunedin


Fleur's Place at Moeraki
First time that I saw such a gorgeous cafe like this.


First time that I saw REAL old books!


First time that I felt so small. (Spot the train of birdies just a little above the water!)


First time that I saw someone parking a boat on grass, lol!


First time that I got so tired that I actually had to take a break. :X


Akaroa
First time that I swam with dolphins! (Hector dolphins, endangered and endemic to NZ, if I remember correctly.)




First time that I saw a lighthouse!


Charlesworth Reserve
First time that I planted a tree. :D


FIRST TIME THAT I SAW SNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I decorated my window with scraps, haha!)


First time that I made a snow angel and had a snowball fight. Because my sims did it too, lol.


First time that I cooked every single meal myself, save for when my boyfriend and I travelled, and the 3 times I went out to meet up with my friends, haha. (I'm on a budget! :P)


(I spent more time arranging the food than eating it, actually. LOL!)

All in all, it was a fantastic experience for me. Everyone knows about the beauty of New Zealand's landscape, but what amazed me the most is the hospitality of the people here. My flatmates brought me around to shop for my things on my first day there, when we were still complete strangers, and then woke up at 4am just to send me to the airport on my last day in NZ; An elderly couple paid for our meal at Fleur's Place when we were travelling; A group of locals hosted dinners (Operation Friendship) for international students so that we may see the insides of their houses and meet and get to know locals; A few shopkeepers even gave me free souvenirs to bring back!

Oh, but the cold was unbearable, though. It seldom got below 0 degrees, but I was miserable enough for it. (I get chilblains every now and then! D:) Guess I'm really a tropical girl!

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
cmespy15
Jul. 2nd, 2012 01:05 pm (UTC)
Lots of first times! ^_^ Glad you had such super fun.
collidingwithme
Jul. 4th, 2012 10:15 pm (UTC)
Yes, I really did! SO GLAD I picked New Zealand for my student exchange! :D
nimi4
Jul. 2nd, 2012 01:30 pm (UTC)
Such beautiful photographs -- and Ning you are the cutest! So glad you got to experience all these lovely things. ♥
collidingwithme
Jul. 4th, 2012 10:19 pm (UTC)
Aww, thanks, Nimi! -^^- But honestly, it's just NZ's beauty that makes any amateur photograph look good, haha!
(Deleted comment)
collidingwithme
Jul. 4th, 2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
Hahaha everything is extra exciting when it's something new! :P

I have NEVER ridden on a horse before that! Well, Singapore has horses, but you need to be really rich. :X (It's not like we have a huge space for horse ridding anyway, so it wouldn't have been much fun.)

LLAMA!!! Hahaha! I didn't think I would be seeing one in real life!

YOU SHOULD!!! Tour the South Island; you won't regret it! Drive if you can because it's actually cheaper than taking the bus plus you can go to off-route places, although it can get a little tiring.

Yea, I was really relieved when I could finally turn on the computer knowing that it WILL be running properly, heh. Thank you, J!! :D
scribal_goddess
Jul. 2nd, 2012 05:49 pm (UTC)
OMG Ning! *Glomps* I literally squealed when I saw that you were back. :)

Oooh, postcards (maybe not the guys in swimsuits though...) and OMG, you've never seen a cow? Okay, there's not a heck of a lot of them where I live, but I've been to a petting zoo at least... It truly is different where you live. All good campuses are a little crazy now and then, we had a dude dressed up as pacman chasing ghosts down the street at mine this spring. ;) Llamas are a little creepy up close, don't you think?

That is a pretty cafe. And a pretty horse. (Looks like it has a sweet temprament too - I only know enough about horses to make a decent guess as to whether or not they're likely to try and kick me, though.)

And Ning cooks pretty food. I'm so glad you got to experience snow, even if at first I read "Zero degrees? Wow!" and then I realized that you were using Celsius. I am such an American, Lol. Especially because 0 degrees celsius where I live, students are still running in the mornings without a coat, just gloves or a scarf on with their sweatshirts.

If you're ever in the cold again, find some pebbles and heat them up in the toaster oven or on top of the radiator (microwaving sadly doesn't work.) Wrap them in old socks and they're as good as a hot water bottle. ;)
collidingwithme
Jul. 5th, 2012 12:26 am (UTC)
SCRIBBLES! :D It feels so good to be talking to you again! (I am still experimenting with sugarless chocolate cakes/brownies, lol! No success yet, unfortunately. :P)

No fair, the petting zoos in Singapore only had small animals like rabbits and hamsters the last time I went! (LOL pacman!) Eh, goats are creepier: their irises are really scary to look at!

The interior of the cafe is really awesome, by the way. I just didn't want to spam you guys, hehe. Yea, that horse was pretty sweet. Mine stopped to eat every now and then and would resist my pull on the reins. o_o

Pretty =/= tasty, as my flatmates can testify. XD (I don't add salt when I cook, heh.) Hahaha, oh, but even at what others consider to be mildly cold (~11degree celcius) I was still wrapped up in at least 3 layers! :P

Ooh, that's quite a cute idea! :D
scribal_goddess
Jul. 5th, 2012 10:35 am (UTC)
Well, I'm smack in the middle of the midwest, so what's available for petting is the livestock... and rabbits and stuff, but quite a lot of goats, sheep, calves and the like. Last time I saw a goat (same petting zoo) it tried to eat my shorts. They really are rather creepy.

You've gotta nudge them in the stomach too. Still, better a nice lazy horse than one that wants you off it's back now. :)

Haha, I'm a crazy northerner. (11 Celsius? that's about... forty something Fahrenheit, I can run down campus in capri pants and a jean jacket, and us great white northerners have shorts on when it hits fifty Fahrenheit. It's 102 F (Almost 40 C?) here, and I am dying, just slowly turning into a little scribbles-flavored puddle. Which is probably neither pretty nor tasty. :)

Haha, well, that's what the salt shaker on the table is for!
collidingwithme
Jul. 6th, 2012 08:55 am (UTC)
Hahahaha!! Your shorts must have brushed against a plant it liked or something! XD

Haha, I know right? The kiwis were running around in mini dresses/tank top and shorts in that temperature too. *envious* But omg 40C?!! Even we (just a little above the equator) don't get 40C! That's the point where people start dying from heatstroke right? (sounds dangerous! :O) Please take care of yourself, Scribbles! Go hard core on water! :D
scribal_goddess
Jul. 6th, 2012 11:38 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it's nasty up here. Record-breaking heat, and it's stalled over all of North America. It's actually warmer in the Northern half of the country than in the southern half of the country right now. Heat wave's supposed to break tomorrow, thank god. I had a hard enough time driving home today, I can't handle it being this hot all weekend. (Yeah, we can't let the dog out for more than 10 min, or he'll get heatstroke - and he's not the furriest beast out there.)

What can I say? Goats find me delicious. ;) They'll eat practically anything, though...
joandsarah
Jul. 2nd, 2012 08:17 pm (UTC)
Yah, Ning is back! *\o/*

I'd love to go to NZ at some point. There they are just over the creek from me and I've never been. So many firsts, sounds like a great trip.

Welcome back. :D



collidingwithme
Jul. 5th, 2012 12:29 am (UTC)
Am very glad to be! :D :D :D

Omg, it's time you went there! (From what I gathered,) Aussies and Kiwis are like sister-countries, haha!

I definitely had a great trip. NZ is so, so beautiful and hospitable!
joandsarah
Jul. 6th, 2012 07:29 am (UTC)
Heh, I don't think the kiwi's will want to hear we are 'sister' countries lol. There tends to be some mostly good natured ribbing between us both. So long as you don't infer they are 'really part of Australia' then they may change from being hospitable to taking after you with pitch forks! ^_^

collidingwithme
Jul. 6th, 2012 08:59 am (UTC)
:X Oops! I thought by the nature that Kiwis and Aussies get to work in each others' countries so easily meant there was pretty special relationship going on, heh. (Come to think of it, that's pretty much like Singapore and Malaysia: there's this love-hate relationship. XD)
scribal_goddess
Jul. 6th, 2012 11:33 pm (UTC)
Yeah, US and Canada are like that too. Sure, it's easy to get across the border, but we get sick of them wondering why we don't speak French and they get sick of people telling them they're one of our states. :)
collidingwithme
Jul. 8th, 2012 10:20 pm (UTC)
hahaha! I guess the preference for individuality is the same around the world. ;)
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