Wow! Looking back, January Me never would have imagined titling a post that. Back then I had no idea I would be where I am today and I had no idea how sad I’d feel leaving. Frankly I couldn’t wait to go home as soon as I arrived. Now I can’t imagine leaving this home. Eventually I will make a big final end of gap year/New Zealand post but in the words of Aragon: “Today is not that day.” Today, I want to focus on all the fun things I did in my final three weeks here and the adventures I had before moving on to Australia.
I’m going to start off with maybe the cutest part of the last weeks: calving season getting properly underway! There are heaps of adorable little bundles of milk running around the paddocks and calf-sheds and I smile every time I see them. I try not to think about the ones I’ve seen and heard about dying. It means that my host dad and the other farm workers are busy and stressed all the time, but the boys and I have fun visiting the little babies. I got to go out on night checks with my host dad once where we visit all the paddocks and check for any calves born during the night. We record and tag them so that they can be picked up in the morning and their mothers can be pulled back into the milking routine. It was so cool to see all the cows up close and they’re basically like giant puppies that want to lick you and be pet. They’re much smellier than real dogs though. And their tongues feel weird.
I had two weeks of school holidays where I had both boys all day. To be fair, I was kind of dreading this, but it ended up being wonderful. There was really only one day where there was difficult behavior and the rest of the time was having fun and being silly with the boys. It was absolutely exhausting but so much fun. These boys have become such a huge part of my life and I’ve learned so much by being with them. Trying not to get emotional here but it’s hard. I’m going to miss my disco-ball dance parties and long farm-walks to see tractors so much.
Travel and Friends
There hasn’t been too much travel lately as I’ve been spending time with my friends before I leave. There’s been lots of lunches and coffee dates and I’m trying to spend as much time with my lovely Danish au pair friends as I can. We were suppose to go on a big ski trip together but New Zealand got hit with a massive snow storm and almost all the roads to the only ski mountain near us were closed. Instead we did a great day trip to Rotorua and it was the last time all four of us au pairs would be together. On my second to last weekend I spent a day in Ragalan, my favourite place nearby, with Ulrikke and it was amazing. I’m going to miss these girls so much and can’t wait until I get to visit everyone in Denmark. We’re planning a reunion next June! I had a big going away dinner/pub party with my au pair and farm friends and another nice dinner rout with just my host family. Rural New Zealand, I’m going to miss you so much.
Now I’m sat on the bus to Auckland airport for a very late flight to Melbourne. I’ve had a fun, boozy weekend with very little sleep. It’s left me exhausted but happy. The tears have rolled and all in all I’m just feeling a little mixed up. I’m so sad to be leaving New Zealand but I’ve got to in order to go onto Australia and university. I’m excited for the next chapter of my life but leaving this part doesn’t feel real yet. I’m sure I’ll be back to New Zealand sometime soon!