Sunday, January 27, 2013

Motorcycle ride and U.S. Marine Memorial

My friend Andrew took me on a motorcyle ride one Saturday that was gorgeous. 
The island that is shown here is Kapiti Island which is also an animal sanctury.

This is the U.S. Marine Memorial the commemorates the landing of the Marines as they prepared to help the Allies during World War II.

Up on the hill with Kapiti in the background.

Sitting on the motorcyle.  Don't worry mom, I don't want one! ;-)

Mindy's visit continued

So for some reason Blogger wouldn't let me upload photos the last couple of weeks so I hadn't been able to update, but finally...success!
This was the trip of unexpected journies and waterfalls! :-)
The first of many waterfalls.  The water is a beautiful turquoise color!

Then off to Rotorua and the burried village.  This village was covered in volcanic mud when the nearby volcano erupted in the late 1800s.  It would've buried me!  As you can see by how tall the mud is.

The next of the waterfalls.
We visited Hobbiton.

Me at the Green Dragon.  It was SO awesome! :-)

The next of the many waterfalls, I can't remember all their names but they are dotted all across the country!

This is us before we went blackwater rafting through a cave!  I NEVER thought I'd do something like this, but I even jumped off 2 waterfalls, BACKWARDS! :-D  It was SO cool, I was the first to jump off.  And there were glow-worms in the caves, an awesome experience!

This was Bridal Veils Falls.  Yes, there is one here!  Actually there are more than one called Bridal Veils Falls.

We stopped by to see the temple lights.  So pretty!

We got to see a few Botanical Gardens.  The rose gardens in the Hamilton Botanical Gardens were SO beautiful!

Another beautiful waterfall.  This one is cool with the built in picture frame.

Then Mindy and I flew to Queenstown and had an AMAZING burger at Fergberger.  SO yummy!

In the meadow on the way to Milford Sound.

Gorgeous waterfalls all the way to the Milford Sound.  This is where they filmed the waterfalls for Rivendell in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Another waterfall in the Milford Sound.  The captain took us all the way into the waterfall but didn't warn us.  I was outside to get pictures and I got SOAKED!

This is a picture of the lake in Queenstown.  Mindy and I climbed up to the top of Queenstown Hill and this was the view.  BEAUTIFUL!

When we got back to Wellington and came through the airport, I had to take a picture of Gollum that they have in the airport.

Then we went overnight tramping.  My pack was only about 30 lbs and we only stayed overnight.  It was a 5 hour walk, literally up and down hills.  There were many times when I was climbing up and down, literally holding on to roots!  It was crazy but a lot of fun.
It was really nice to have Mindy visit during Christmas.  It brought a little bit of Arizona to me since I couldn't go home for Christmas.  She's a wonderful, wonderful friend!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Mindy's Christmas visit

My good friend Mindy came to visit me for Christmas.  We got to spend time in Wellington as well as traveled the country.
Our first thing once Mindy showered was visit the Wellington Botanic Gardens where Mindy climbed a tree where you can climb to the top and sit on top of the tree.