Social stuff before start of semester

Went to see Bruno with a large group of international students this week – I’m making no comment about the film here!

Taeiri Gorge railway trip was awesome, great scenery and we were treated to a delicious barbeque!

My flatwarming was “sweet as” (local lingo, means ‘very good’). I was “stoked” (happy) that my Scottish-style cocktail sticks and other nibbles went down well. Many people came representing so many different countries and cultures including Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Japan, New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, America, Holland, Poland, Belgium and France. It was great to have such an interesting mix of personalities relaxing and socialising in my place, and I loved being the hostess! Everyone was thanking me for throwing such a good party 🙂 And nothing got broken or trashed – always a bonus!

Apart from everyone having a good time, it was clear to me that boundaries and stereotypes were broken and new friendships were made. A very rewarding night!

I’ve just returned from a cruise around Taiaroa Head, a nature reserve around the Otago Peninsula, and was lucky to see Southern Royal albatross adults in flight, circling the boat thinking it was a fishing vessel and looking for things to scavenge. Because they are scavengers, they are tempted by the bait hooked on to long-line fishing lines, become tangled and trapped, and drown. Long-line fishing kills around 100,000 albatross every year.

I also saw Northern Royal albatross chicks nesting on the ground – the only albatross species in the world that nests on a mainland, New Zealand sea lions, and fur seals.

Yesterday the timetables came out and I’ve just had a look at mine. I’m going to have a very busy semester 😦

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