Showing posts from February, 2010

Chinese New Year Fireworks

I live in the greatest spot in town! Got to see some great fireworks right from my balcony for the Lantern Festival.

Tsunami Alert

After the earthquake in Chile, there was a tsunami alert issued for the entire east coast of New Zealand. There was an expected 1.5 meter wave, which sounds like nothing, but supposedly can be quite powerful. Sediments are still clouding the sea, and that's what is actually turning off swimmers from enjoying such a beautiful day. I have lost count of how many tsunami warnings New Zealand has had since I have been here.

Lantern Festival

Last night I met up with some friends for the Lantern Festival. It was like I was walking through Hong Kong. I think the highlight was listening to the karaoke. Reminded me of A Christmas Story, when the family went to the Chinese restaurant and the waiters sang carols to them. I managed to get a couple singers on video.
If you come to New Zealand around Chinese New Year, be sure to check out the Lantern Festival. But if you aren't a fan of big crowds, then I would highly recommend that you avoid the festivities.

I'm alive!

Just an update that I survived my birthday and now I am excited to say that I will start classes on Monday!

Waterfall Hike Pictures

Malini and me.
Little break before the hard part. We climbed up the right side of this waterfall.
Climbing through the bush.
Getting there...
Finally reached the last waterfall after climbing up mud slides and rock face with barely anywhere to grip!

Winter Olympics during the summer

Friday night I went to hear blues music at Blockhouse Bay beach reserve with a few friends. That night I stayed at Malini's house and had a girls night. She will be moving to London and eventually Norway in a month. In the morning I made her family pancakes and as soon as we had our shoes on we drove to the Waitakere Ranges for some hiking to a number of waterfalls.
The hike led us through a valley following a stairway of waterfalls. It was a simple walk... until after the first waterfall Malini said "O.K. now across this rock and that one and then we climb up that hill," which was all mud and roots. I was starting to get a little muddy and that was only the begging. At one point there was, what seemed like, an 80 degree angle of rock face. We had to climb up using the few little rocks as hand holds. After some more climbing up mud, through bush, and across rocks we finally made it.
The second to last waterfall had a pool of chilly water that we had to swim across to get …

Pictures from Marius' visit.

First sunset of the road trip, at Coromandel Town.

Old lab that visited us at our holiday park spot at Hot Water Beach where we met two American recent college grads who we really enjoyed getting to know.

Mt. Manganui

Cooking spaghetti on a BBQ in Mt. Manganui.

Bridal Veil Falls

A challenge...

I am back to the old routine of talking to Marius on Skype and going to work for, on average, 6 hours a few days a week. I am now trying to save up every single penny to visit Marius and my other Norwegian friends in Norway at the end of June.
I will need to save up about $3000 to pay for the ticket and my rent while I'm gone. I already have some money saved up for my next visa application, but I'm still taking every hour of work I can get. Sadly, it's now down to only about three days a week.
February is the hottest month in New Zealand, and it is proving that at night.
I am excited to get started on the new semester, starting March 1. I think I am most excited for GEOG 311, Hydrology and Fluvial Geomorphology. "An integrated study of hydrological and fluvial processes in a river basin context. Content includes: examination of the water balance, run-off generating processes and river hydrology, integrated with investigation of sediment sources and transport and resul…