Monday, July 12, 2010

Our First Weekend

8 July 2010:
On Thursday night, Erika and I met a super nice and bubbly Maori girl who lives downstairs, Waikohu, and got to tag along with her and her friends at the bars/clubs in town. It ended with us dancing until verrry late at a bar called the Outback with the girls and some of our RAs! I really like our RAs and respect them because although we felt lucky to go out with them and had SO much fun, they seem responsible and dedicated to their jobs and have been consistent in enforcing the hall rules, which must be difficult. From 10 p.m. to 10 a.m., there is a strict alcohol, noise, and visitor ban. It is funny living in the dorms again. I keep forgetting that I’m actually a year or two older than most students in our hall.

9 July 2010:

The RAs took the international students on a few outings this past weekend as well. On Friday we went with a small group to Raglan, the famous surf spot, about an hour west of Hamilton. As it is the west coast, the sand is fine, black, and almost glitters in the sun; I cannot image how hot it would be to walk on in the heat of summer!

Gabe, one of the two hilarious senior RAs, does a sport called BloKarting, which was invented in New Zealand. Imagine a small go-kart, with a windsurfing sail attached, that can reach speeds of 100 km/hr (a little over 60ish mph) when the wind is right – at Raglan it wasn’t, but he let us try it out anyway. It ended up with Gabe pushing us around on the sand, more than catching the wind, but it was fun all the same. I want to go to the track out on the east coast some weekend if I have a chance! Did I mention that Gabe is actually the world champion at BloKarting (and set to compete again in Belgium in October)… so, I got a mini lesson/pushed around in a BloKart by the world champ haha.

10 July 2010:
On Saturday we went on another excursion to Mt. Maunganui, about an hour and half away on the east coast. We explored the beach (white sand on this side of the North Island) and then, after lunch, climbed the mountain for a spectacular view of the coast!

Erika and I posing at the lookout point on the drive to the mountain:

Exploring the beach! (Acting like velociraptors to fit in with the dense jungle background hehe):

A view of the beach and mountain:

At the top!:

Back in time for dinner, we went out again on Saturday night and had a blast. Although, Erika and I tried to fit in a bit more, dressing up in heels and dresses etc., instead of the jeans from Thursday (which made us stick out), and ended up with pretty sore feet in the morning.

Last night, we had a hall meeting to go over some of the residence hall rules and then went tenpin bowling with the internationals/RAs at some lanes nearby.

Today is the first day of the semester, but since I only have a tutorial late on Monday afternoons, and there are no tutorials (only lectures) during this first week, I have a free day. Although I’m looking forward to classes tomorrow! I will be taking three upper level papers (so 60 points total)- Public Relations Campaigns, in which we create a full scale campaign for a company, with an environmentally friendly focus, in teams of five, Public Relations Cases Studies, and International Relations: The Security Agenda.

I got up at 6:30 a.m. to watch Spain DOMINATE the Netherlands in the World Cup final! It was pretty funny watching last week’s semis between Germany and Spain – we went to the student union lounge and watched it with an entire room of the German exchange students (I cheered for ESPANA :)of course ).

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