Christchurch Bus Tour

{Originally posted by Marin Jacobson, a sophomore Equine Science major, is spending the Spring of 2015 in Lincoln, New Zealand. Her blog is located directly here}

So yesterday (Sunday 02/22) I got to go on a bus tour of Christchurch (which the locals just write as ChCh). This was a free event through LU, so that was great. I went with my friend Amanda (also from CSU), and Rebecca (Kiwi). We first went through the actual city of ChCh, stopping at the ChCh Botanical Gardens, which I’ll post pictures of below. It was the 4 year anniversary of the earthquake, so people were honoring those affected by floating these beautiful flowers down a river/creek.

After the gardens we went more into the city area, stopping to see the new cathedral (the old one was famously affected by the earthquake) pictured below. Unfortunately we couldn’t go inside due to a concert, but they had some lovely stained glass windows.

From here we went to the pier in ChCh and ate lunch there. I wasn’t too hungry so I got apple pear juice and a caramel bar I couldn’t even finish half of (SO RICH).
It was a very grey skies kind of day, but the ocean was a really strange green color! My ocean back home is super dark blue so that’s kind of cool, even though they’re technically the same ocean 😉 Well after ChCh we went to some AMAZING surrounding towns, including Lyttleton and Sumner. We stopped on the side of the road for pictures, but didn’t stop for touristy things otherwise we were going to miss dinner.
That was pretty much it! Not incredibly in depth, but it was so nice to be able to see some of our surrounding area! I really want to go back to Lyttleton and Sumner, both were very scenic and cute towns. I hate big cities, so these were more my pace 🙂 Oh and here’s a nice sunset view from our kitchen window!

Still LOVING it here! Everyone is incredibly kind and friendly. New post to come soon on classes: week one!

Toryn says Kia Ora to New Zealand

I am now in New Zealand! The 12-hour flight went faster than I had expected! I watched Pitch Perfect and What to Expect When You’re Expecting. Pitch Perfect never gets old. Then I fell asleep and when I woke up we had less than 2 hours remaining. Then, we experienced the scariest turbulence in my history of flying. :/ Other notes about the flight: airline food is good (at least on Air New Zealand) and I had my first “legal” glass of wine. :] 

The lady that drove me to the campus pointed out the town to me and kept saying “bits and pieces.” I’m not sure if that is a Kiwi thing or if that was just her. She would say oh that place you can buy such and such and bits and pieces. When she got a phone call, she said I’m pretty busy doing bits and pieces. 

I have moved into my flat now. It is cute. :] When the wind blows, the whole place creaks. And none of my flatmates are here yet so the noises keep freaking me out a little! The campus is pretty desolate. I guess I got here a little too early… I thought I would be jetlagged pretty bad and just want to sleep, but it’s quite the opposite feeling. I want to get out and PARTAY. Lol

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Flat at Lincoln University

So today I walked around. The campus is cute and small. The library is this old building with a clock tower. It’s pretty awesome looking. I walked to the town and went to the grocery store. It’s called New World. The prices are high, because New Zealand has a pretty high cost of living. I haven’t bought any alcohol yet, but the thought that I can is weird… It feels like cheating. I did buy some kiwis, however. I felt it was appropriate.

I walked into the little town of Lincoln right when all the kids were getting out of school. A bunch of them were wearing like these yellow crossing guard vests. It was strange. I walked down by a creek and watched some ducks. I haven’t checked my bird guide to see what kind they were. There was one white one, like the Aflac duck. I think they might have been released domestics. The creek had a lot of litter in it. I was shocked. New Zealand is known for their environmentalism. I guess not every Kiwi is perfect. :]

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ReStart Shopping Area in Christchurch

Things don’t seem that foreign here, but I definitely feel foreign. The cars drive on the left side of the road… I got a ride to my flat from the pest control guy… I know weird, but the shuttle lady had to ditch me and he offered. I set all my stuff in the front seat without realizing that it was actually the driver’s seat… Thankfully I realized it before I started to get in. The money here is cool. It all has pictures of birds on it. Money works the same here, of course, but I got this weird feeling handing it over to pay. Like I could somehow mess it up or that the way I pay would give away that I’m an American. Silly I know. Also, all the temperatures are in Celsius and I feel like there is not easy way to understand that.  

There are lots of mountains. :] New Zealand kind of is a mash up of all the places I’ve ever been too. A lot of the trees and plants are the same as back home, but then they are mixed with like palm trees and tropical looking things. There are lots of flowers and birds. I keep reminding myself that I won’t be seeing any squirrels on campus. 

I did meet up with a girl from school tonight, Rita. Tomorrow we are going to take the bus into Christchurch and hopefully take another bus to a beach! 

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Sumner Beach

Toryn is a senior studying fish, wildlife, and conservation biology at CSU.  She is attending Lincoln University in Christchurch, New Zealand for the spring 2013 term.