goodbye holiday

/ happy belated earth day - let's plant t-shirt on threadless /

it's hard to believe my 2-week school break is already winding down! it has been pretty busy and surprisingly productive though so i can't complain.

/ too pretty bluntcard /

for the first few days of the break i was enjoying some small sleep ins, but i still put in some hours at work trying to catch up with a backlog of paperwork from the end of the term. i also did a bit of wedding stuff including hiring a dress designer and nearly finalising the invites. the wedding planner (a.k.a. reuben) was mighty happy to finally have those things underway :)

/ thumbper t-shirt on threadless /

over easter weekend we headed to lake taupo to spend a few days at reuben's parents' caravan at motutere bay. on the first day i went out on the boat while reuben and his dad did a bit of fishing, but i just read and napped :) in fact, i finished two novels over the weekend: snow flower and the secret fan and the queen's fool. i really enjoyed them both. the most exciting part of the weekend was an unplanned ride on the huka jet. we got pretty soaked but it was lots of fun.

/ adam, julia, chris, me, reuben suited up for the huka jet /

on easter monday reuben, his sister julia, her boyfriend adam and i went up to rotorua and stopped by some of the smelly, bubbling attractions on the way since adam had never been before. they then dropped me off with emma at kiwi encounter so i could spend a few days visiting her. i had only been back to kiwi encounter once or twice since since doing my masters research there and while things had changed a bit, emma still put me to work dishing out the meaty kiwi food and a few other little things. it was so great to see one of the little fluffy cutie chicks again, too!

/ kiwi place card via ritzy bee blog /

the weather was pretty dreadful for the couple days i stayed with emma - the wind was so bad it brought down several trees around her house with a mighty thump! it was fun to hang out nonetheless - have a latte and blueberry white chocolate muffin at the quirky okere falls store, play with her flatmate's dog, catch up on all of our nerdy news and have a clothes swapping party. i managed to stuff my luggage absolutely full with new-to-me goodies from emma's closet :)

/ view of mount ruapehu on the way up to taupo /

i took the bus back home on wednesday afternoon and despite all the usual annoying things about bus rides, i really enjoy watching the stunning countryside go by. the bad weather held off for the most part, except when we went through the desert road where it was so rainy and misty that mount ruapehu was completely invisible, which is a pretty stunning feat for a 9000+ foot tall mountain (which also happens to be the most active volcano in nz, according to wikipedia).

on thursday morning i had my first day as keeper of live animals at te manawa. i am one of 2 keepers, the other being a girl who also studies at massey and has worked at the local pet shop animates. i think our experience compliments one another really well and i quite like her too. it's actually really exciting to be a founding member of the animal programme at te manawa and basically building it up from scratch. i think it's going to be a lot of fun, even if i am only doing 4 hours a week! i ended up staying all day thursday and half a day on friday organising animal stuff as well as helping put the exhibition together as the vip opening night was on friday and they were FAR from being ready! the big grand opening of stage 1 of te manawa's renovations was this weekend so it's been absolutely full on down there with opening events and hundreds of people! while the river exhibition is far from being complete, it still looks pretty fantastic. if anyone local is planning on going, i'd give it another month before you visit so more things are in place.

and now it's the last day of my vacation, reuben is up in auckland for a few days for work so it's just me and the cats hanging around and trying to finish everything i had planned for my break!


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