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Greetings from New Zealand

Well, we arrived safely and more or less uneventfully. Total travel time from our home to BEN!‘s mom’s house was about 26 hours. That, my friends, is a long time.

Fun facts:

* Upon arriving in Auckland, we were fumigated. In order to protect their beautiful island country, they apparently needed to rid plane and people of any harmful pests. So several flight attendants walked down the aisles with spray cans…they sprayed directly into the overhead bins and we were all coated in a soft, aromatic mist. Then we sat (while all of the small children and babies began coughing) and waited. Once we were pest-free (?) we were released to customs.

* One of the first signs we saw in the Auckland airport were posted on garbage cans (rubbish bins, for my Southern Hemispherian friends). And they read: No spitting. Please use the toilet. Okay then…

* Walking down toward customs were greeted by a beautiful Hobbit mural, welcoming us.

* In customs, Iris had to remove her hiking boots (from her luggage) to have them inspected for….dirt. Don’t you be trying to bring any dirty boots into New Zealand?

* It really is as beautiful here as BEN! said it was. Really.

* We watched the Hobbit last night. I might have fallen asleep five minutes in. But in my defense, we had traveled for 26 hours and then only had about 3-4 hours of sleep…then took an hour-long walk around a beautiful lake, then come home for a swim. I was tired.

* Tonight we are going to see Catching Fire…at a theater that serves dinner!

Okay, I am off my friends. I hope you are having a fabulous holiday season!



  1. Samantha

    The hiking boot inspection is for the same reason as the fumigation – the flora and fauna in New Zealand is very isolated and therefore very sensitive to foreign diseases!
    And the spitting – New Zealand and Australia and very popular destinations for some Asian countries where spitting is more culturally acceptable than it is here!
    Enjoy New Zealand, such a beautiful country. If you’re in Auckland, try a white lady burger!!

  2. Heidi Wilson

    You arrived!! Yes it is a VERY long flight to get to this beautiful section of the world! GOSH I feel like you are right next door even though you are still a several hours long flight away from me! I so wish I could drop everything in my life and come there and meet you both!! Have an amazing time and I can’t wait to see all the wonderful photos and hear about your fabulous adventures!! 🙂

  3. Melpub

    Sounds beautiful, but oh, that fumigation. For tops in fumigation scenes, try Mary Antin’s “Exodus” chapter in her memoir, The Promised Land (online!)

  4. Elizabeth

    I’m happy for you. A tad jealous (New Zealand is on my ‘list’) but happy for you non-the-less! I’m sure you could really use the break. Enjoy!!

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