After a flurry of activity and the beginnings of serious house cleaning and house packing, along with trip packing - it's finally setting in that we'll be departing in a few days. Thanks again to Fred for helping out
I still have lingering fears over flying, but, the various New Zealand air services are the second safest in the world, behind Finland. So I'm going to shut up and take Valium and sleep on the plane. I have 2 sewing projects to pay with, 'fuzzy' headphones, 3DS, book/kindle, mask and pillow. Most of which I totally didn't pack on the last trip. The Europe flight was so long and smooth, I was able to forget I was on a plane. It was kind of a weird experience. Everyone was so deliberately quiet it was almost like a sleeping spaceship. A weird sort of self-paralysis.
As with Prague, I'm bringing an extra, mostly empty bag for purchases like wine and coffee. We're bringing 4 bottles of American wine as gifts for the people we're staying with. We did it last year with the woman who was our landlord on the airbnb flat rental. She was very appreciative, and we had a wonderful stay. I think we'll be continuing to use airbnb, for just about everything, when possible.
Stuff we're planning to do:
Horseback trail riding in the "dinosaur rainforest", hiking, and glow worm caves
The theme park and aquarium, and a visit to the Sky Tower. Jason still wants to jump off it, but I have serious doubts about my ability to do so too.
Some other touristy stuff, and a glacier visit by helicopter! (ohgodohgodohgodhohgod)
We ended up cutting out a lot of the driving time in favor of more hiking and relaxing. The original plan was to go as far south as possible, but that would involve an extra 20 hours of driving time, if we didn't get lost.
After some luggage wrangling, we said 'fuck it' and bought new, larger luggage bags. We'll need them anyway, and our old bags were getting broke-ass. The new bags were reasonably priced, and about twice the volume of the old ones.
I'm bringing my 'elf ren fair dress'. I wasn't able to even start on the idea of an Arwen Riding Outfit, but I'm hoping to be able to find somewhere gorgeous, throw on the dress and snap a few shots. I hope I can pick up some elf ears in Hobbiton too.
Left to pack:
Contacts, 'bathroom stuff', a scarf, sunglasses, makeup, 2 pairs jeans,.. uhmm.. and a sticky note to leave in the rental car on which side of the road is the 'right' side...