September 5, 2006
I am now the proud owner of a Kiwi drivers licence! I started the day by going to the NZ Automobile Association and passing my drivers test. I only got one question wrong - in case you don't all already know, if you leave broken glass on the road after an accident, you don't have 24 hours to clean it up - you must sweep it up right away. So be sure to keep a whisk in your car if you ever come to NZ!
It's still Sept 4 (Labor Day) in North America so I decided to take the day off today in honour of all of you. I went to the local knit shop where a group of women get together to knit and gab for 2 hours every Tuesday and Thursday morning. It was really fun. The women ranged from about 30 to 65 years old and they were very outspoken and full of laughs. There was even a young man with Down's Syndrome who came and was working on knitting a blanket. And he brought us pancakes that he had made for our snack. Several of the women also brought homemade goodies so it was definitely not my usual triathlon-style workout!
After my knitting session, I went to Fed Ex to send some work documents to the US. This afternoon turned out to be a test of whether I have given up the frantic rat race of the USA and adapted to the more easy-going Kiwi environment. And I passed the test!
I walked to the bus terminal from the wool shop and missed the bus by 2 minutes. This bus comes every half hour so I sat down and waited for it and then managed to miss it again because I was on the wrong side of the street! So 1 hour after getting to the bus terminal, I did actually catch my bus. Half an hour later I arrived at the stop for Fed Ex (near the airport). It was about a half mile walk to Fed Ex so I decided to walk quickly in hopes that I could catch the same bus after its turnaround at the airport. I just about made it but a couple stopped me for directions to the Antarctica Center and as they drove off, so did the bus! So I waited another 30 minutes, rode the bus for 30 minutes back to the bus terminal, transferred to the bus that takes me home (but got off half way to go to the grocery store and so had to wait for the next bus ) and finally rode the last 30 minutes home. All in all I figured it took me nearly 5 hours to do my Fed Ex packet! It should only take a little over twice that long for the packet to fly to California! But I did get caught up on reading all my medical journals, which hasn't happened once in the last 3 years I'm sure! And even then I wasn't home yet so I listened to Brooke Fraser (sort of a Kiwi version of Norah Jones) on my IPod the rest of the way. And the whole thing was completely relaxing - much nice than driving in my car - plus I saw another whole section of Christchurch that I'd never gone through before.