Archive for the “New Zealand” Category

A Look at Maori Culture

Maori culture has always fascinated me ever since I saw the movie Whale Rider. Their history, cool tattoos, dancing, beliefs, and general relaxed personality make them very interesting to me. As the indigenous people of New Zealand, they haven’t done well since the arrival of European settlers. Then again, no indigenous population fared well after Europeans arrived. However, the Maoris are a warrior race and are famous for never having been defeated by the English settlers. It’s a fact the […]

Waitomo’s Glow Worm Caves

Waitomo, New Zealand is famous for one thing. Every year, heaps upon heaps of travelers come here to see the famous glow worms that line the ceilings of the nearby caves. The glow worms emit a phosphorescent glow that shines from the inside of the caves like a starry night. The interesting thing about the glow worms is that they aren’t really glow worms. They’re fly larvae. And what glows? Well, that’s their waste and snot. The larvae glow to […]

Away from Home for the Holidays

Growing up, I often spent Christmas at my friend Matt’s house. In fact, it often seemed like everyone I knew spent Christmas at his house. After everyone had their family Christmas, we congregated there to celebrate together as friends. Even after college, my friends and I still managed to spend Christmas at Matt’s house, holding onto that one tradition even as our lives grew apart. I haven’t been home for the holidays in four years. I get asked a lot […]

Trying to Fish in Taupo

I’ve only been fishing once in my life. It was during an extended stay on the island of Ko Lipe. A few of us had rented a boat to explore the nearby national park and islands. For lunch, our Thai captain went out to catch fish. I was one of the few who went with him, each of us allowed a chance to catch something. Fishing in Thailand is done the old-fashioned way: a hook attached to a line thrown […]

The Bay of Islands

A few hours north of Auckland is the Bay of Islands. It’s a small area where people go to holiday, sail, swim, see dolphins, and relax. The main tourist town is Paihia, though a lot of people go to nearby Russßell too. If you’ve ever been to the Cape, Martha’s Vineyard, Byron Bay, or any seaside town that relies solely on tourism, then you’ll have a good idea as to what this area is like. There’s not much going on […]

From New Zealand, With (SERIOUS) Jetlag

I hardly ever get jetlag. My bottle of Ambien and I usually become good friends whenever I fly long-haul trips. It helps me keep my sleeping schedule normal. Whenever I land, I take another Ambien that night, pass out, and wake up feeling like sunshine and moonbeams. Yet all did not work out for me this time. My flight from Bangkok left at 5pm and landed in Sydney at what would have been 1am Bangkok time. I don’t even go […]