Sunday, September 21, 2008

Snow Holiday

Well, I'm back from holiday and had an amazing time! The place we stayed was amazing, the weather was fantastic (best three days of the snow season so far allegedly), and snowboarding was so much fun!

As you can kind of see from the photos I've at least managed to snowboard down the slope without falling over. I've even learned to make turns down the slope without falling over! I'd love to go again some time soon and see how much I've really learned. I do have to admit that I was more than a little sore after the three days; I've discovered new muscles (because the hurt), my ankles, knees and tail are bruised from falling over and I burnt the tip of my nose and a stripe on my forehead (between my hat and my goggles). All part of the fun!

The views from the mountain were stunning and I had planned to take the lift up higher on the last day. But seeing as by that point I could barely move I decided I'd do that another time. But I did get to go for a walk on some of the trails up the mountain which were beautiful (if slightly disorientating at times).

All in all it was a great holiday; a chance to relax, have some fun and recharge a little. My thanks to James, Viv (and congratulations to J & V), and Matt for a great time away.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Changing Seasons

So it is finally getting towards being spring! I can tell by the fact that it is getting lighter later into the evening and that walking past some gardens makes me sneeze (hay fever)!
Me with the snowy hills in the background Snowy hills around Wellington
Last weekend was unusual in that there was snow on the hills surrounding Wellington. It was a gloriously sunny day (unlike the rain of the previous 6 weeks!) but yet there was snow (which I am also pleased about as I am heading off snowboarding next week!) which was more than a little confusing.

It is also one of the more confusing times of the year (for me) generally. The UK weather starts getting worse (although from what I've heard it's been rubbish anyway) and the weather here starts to improve. My nephews and nieces have just started a new school year but lectures at Victoria university finish in four and a half weeks before heading into final exams. It is a time when the Northern and Southern hemispheres feel at their most distant.

This morning I went to the airport to say goodbye to two very good friends, Matt and Liz, who are heading overseas as missionaries. I am very grateful to them both, it was Liz who set me up with the flat that I lived in last year (owned by her in-laws) and I got to the know the wider family through living nearby. They welcomed me in so warmly across the year and had me over for Christmas. They have played a big part in my ongoing adjustment to life in NZ.

I am very sad to see Matt and Liz go but am very excited for them and humbled by their obedience to God's call on their lives.

One thing that completely caught me off guard this morning was the rush of memory and emotion watching Liz and Matt say farewell to friends and family at the airport. It reminded me so clearly of when I moved here back in 2006. I have been here for nearly three years now and this is the amount of time I originally committed to joining TSCF for. So being at the point of renewing my contract it has set me exploring options for the future. But more on that in another post...