Monday, 6 May 2013

Weeks 49-50 - The folks come to town, Ice Skating, and the weird and Wonderful things Wellington offers!

Sunset over Wellington - views from our balcony...
Hello Everybody,
Another 2 weeks has flown by, and all of a sudden it's May, almost a year since I arrived here in Wonderful Wellington. I'm really happy to be sharing this time with my parents who have traveled a long long way to come and check out my life here. 
It's also been a fairly hectic time too since returning from my holiday to Vietnam, and applying to present at conferences n both New Zealand & Japan. So lets try and put some order to these weeks.

First up is the great news that the abstract submitted to this year's New Zealand Clinical workshops, was accepted which means in September I'll be presenting a 90 minute workshop with some colleagues entitled: 'Around the OT world in 80 Mins'. It will be full of great case studies from around the world for the delegates to have a go at solving! I just need to get a student competition up and running so the winner will get the chance to come and co-present with us, hopefully to show people that senior therapists can help facilitate student / new-grad participation in such events.
I've also submitted a risky abstract to the World OT conference in Japan next year, entitled: 'The hobbOT - an unexpected journey - from Chile to Japan, via the shires of England & New Zealand'. Not sure if the committee will take it seriously, but if they do, and accept it, I could have a brilliant time making lots of LOTR (Lord of The Rings) links in the presentation! 
With Mum & Dad @ Plimmerton
Back to life here, and the main event being my folks getting here! They had a pretty big first week trying to adjust to the new time zone and get over the jet lag. Eventually after a few days, they came seemed to pick up, and were soon getting around on public transport around the many stunning bays that Wellington has to offer! Thursday was ANZAC DAY (Public holiday commemorating the lives of those lost in the war. Did you know New Zealand lost the largest percentage of the male population of any of the allied countries, during the WWII). 
ANZAC day was also celebrated here in Wellington with the first ever competitive AFL (Australian Football League) game to be played outside of New Zealand. (You might know the game as 'Aussie Rules'). The game itself is a mix between rugby and gaelic football, but one thing that does not explain in the ridiculously tight shorts that these guys wear!
Aussie Rules match... 
Aussie rules match...
 The game is split into 4 quarters, (I think it's 30 mins each quarter). The aim is to kick the ball through the middle posts for 6 points, and you get 1 point for the ball going through the posts at the side. The main thing that seemed to go on in the middle of the pitch was all these guys wrestling with each other, (or tickling each other) - it was hard to tell to be honest! It wasn't boring, but did seem to be without any serious rules, and there must have been at least 3-4000 Aussies who had come to watch the match too! I took a little video so you can make your own mind up, enjoy! 

The weekend turned out to be a brilliant one, with my good friends Tony & Monica coming to Wellington to enjoy the long weekend! I'm always trying to get them to think about moving here, (but don't think I'll convince them about the weather - its much colder than Auckland. Still, we decided to have a little drive up the coast to Kapiti, and Paraparaumu...
The troupe @ Plimmerton
I even managed to find myself a nice looking kiwi woman! 
Before  fun evening to, we drove around the bays, and by chance arrived at Moa Point on the Southern tip of the North Island, for a spectacular sunset! 
Moa Point @ Sunset
Moa Point Sunset.
 More adventures followed on Saturday, as I drove the folks out to Makara, on the south west coast, for soem amazing views on the south Island across the Cook Straight....
Makara Beach...
Dad looking out to the South Island!
This past week, has been something different all together, two good gym sessions, back at volunteer basketball, a great cycle around the bays yesterday and some brilliant and fun kayaking in the harbour today, including self rescue when capsizing! Shame I couldn't get pictures of that, because if you'd seen me trying to get back in the Kayak, you'd be spitting out your cuppa's in laughter right now! 
However, all the fun and active things things week aside, one of the highlights had to be Tuesday nights 'Adventure wellington' meet-up for some outdoor ice skating. Always a favourite past time of mine, about 7 of us (who's never met us before), had a fun night trying our best not to fall over and embarrass ourselves in public! 

Some people on the rink, took fun to a whole new level, and let me take a picture of some interesting ice skating wear... 
Random girls at the rink...
The night ended as many of my Adventure Wellington meet-ups often do.... in the pub with a drink. So after a night on ice, what better way than to end by a log fire in the Dockside pub!
So another busy week flies by, and it's almost a year. The parents have been in the South Island having their own adventure whilst I have been keeping busy this week! Lets see what the rest of May brings! 
Regards from New Zealand.

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