Cindy, New Zealand Guest Blogger

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This final New Zealand blog is written by a guest blogger, Cindy, aboard Air New Zealand flight NZ6 from Auckland to LAX. During the trip my role has been that of keeping Max organized and on time; there have also been the occasional opportunities to give him a woman’s point of view on what we experienced, as well as times when I noticed little details he might have missed. I took a few photos and will proofread the stories. In fact, I plan to write my own article about the Maori. Stay tuned for that….

Prior to the trip many people told us “Oh, New Zealand is beautiful” so I expected the magnificent panoramic vistas, sheep and cows grazing in fields expanding to the horizon. Our drive from New Plymouth to Wellington took us through little towns that I’d never heard of. The Tawhiti Museum in Hawera provided a stimulating stop along the way. Hard to believe that Nigel Ogle has made all the models himself and chronicles the history of the country from the time of the Maori to the arrival of the Europeans and beyond. This is a must see for anyone with children. Or anyone who appreciates a craft well honed with passion and expertise.

A surprise of the trip was the kinship I feel with the Kiwis. They, like me, descend from European immigrants; we share a common language; when discussing the issues of the day they are all very similar. Kiwis are the most traveled people I’ve ever met. They have a spirit of adventure and a balance between work and play that we Americans usually lack. Our stay in New Plymouth at the Kaitake Lodge has given us new friends in Ross and Forest; our stay at Villa Margarita in Wellington gave us new pals Mark and Margarita. These are the gems of New Zealand…the people who we met along the way. I hope you go to New Zealand someday and meet them too!