Counting Down

Blogging is a wonderful thing isn’t it folks?   We all start our blogs off with  a certain outcome in mind, a certain reason for putting up those first posts and I wonder how many find those initial thoughts and intentions are changed or widened and deepened quite soon after that innocent and hopeful  beginning.  I bet none of us thought when we started out that what would really happen is we would build a community around our blogs, make new friends and sometimes even get to have real adventures with them.

In just two weeks two bloggers from the USA and one blogger from Canada will make their travel worn and weary ways to my little home in New Zealand for a celebratory reunion.

We all met through our blogs here on WordPress.

Alys from Gardening Nirvana

Born To Organize

Kelly from Boomdeadda

Laurie from Life on the Bike and Other Fab Things

Image result for lifeonthebikeandotherfabthings

Three years ago we all gathered in Washington DC and met up for the first time in the flesh.  There was a core group, which included Julia from Defeat Despair, but we also got to meet and spend some time with other bloggers albeit briefly and of course there was Lisa from Arlingwords who toured us enthusiastically and knowledgeably around Washington DC – it was a fabulous time filled with amazing women!

You know, I got to see many amazing things on that trip – my first to the States – but the memories that stay most strongly with me are of the people.  My friends of course, and on one memorable afternoon, the many friends of one of those friends, but also left deeply etched into my impressions are of all the folk I encountered incidentally and accidentally and in passing.  Everyone was so NICE –  friendly, interested, well spoken, polite.  They all happily posed for photographs, took photos of us, for us and seemed genuinely pleased to meet someone with a strange accent from a little known place near (or in one case IN)  Australia.   Everyone said ‘Thank you!’ so convincingly I arrived back home saying ‘THANKyew!’ too.

Now it’s my turn to return the hospitality.  It’s a smaller group sadly, but still it is set to be great fun.  We will spend just two full days in Dunedin before travelling ‘up Central’ to the mountain plateau town of Wanaka which will be our base for nine days and from which we will explore the beautiful places all around the area.  While there’s an unending choice of things to do and see I believe there will also be some crafting time and jigsaw puzzling time and crocheting time.  We are having a very hot summer this year and currently the temperatures are the highest that have ever been recorded in that area  (I’m hoping that by the end of February they may have dropped a little)  so sitting quietly creating things might be all some of us can aspire to.

There will be more than just the four of us going on this little adventure.  My ED, Joanna and her partner Steven are driving down from Wellington to be part of the convoy that heads west into the high plateau.  My YD, Danella, recovering well with her mangled leg will also be coming, but not driving.  Siddy won’t be driving either, though his head will be out the front passenger window and his backside on someone’s knee at all times…….

An added extra will be the arrival of Alys’ husband Mike flying in from California for a couple of days as we wind down our time together.

It is going to be FABULOUS!

Before we go up country there will be a couple of days to explore Dunedin City.

There’s this fun trike/ motorbike that takes four people at a time up and around the hills of Dunedin to admire the views with ‘Experience Dunedin Tours’ This photo from their website experiencedunedin.com

Tours Dunedin.jpg

There’s a chance to check out the model for this proposal at the museum – this is my favourite plan ever for a city in this country  (Yes, there is no sound)  It has already progressed from being a thirty year plan to being possible in just six!  I may yet live to see it soaring majestically at the head of our beautiful harbour

On March 1st  we head up and west to the Lakes District and the heart of Tourism Capital  We are hoping to fit in a few fun adventures between exploring gold mining towns and tourist towns and wine and cheese tasting;  There will be barbecues preceded by margaritas and lake paddling accompanied by Siddy.  There might be gondola rides up the sides of a mountain, kayaking, bungy jumping or a more sedate visit to a lavender farm.  There might even be some adventure cycling for some fit folk………..  There WILL be wineries and cheeseries and lots of food.  There may even be some shopping.  Mostly there will simply be the chance to enjoy each other’s company – how fabulous is that?

We’ll keep you posted!

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

 

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88 thoughts on “Counting Down

  1. I thought I had written you a response on Luanne’s gorgeous lightcatcher post here. . .
    I also thought I had replied to this post about your upcoming guests!
    💞
    I am excited for you to have your friends from blogging coming to visit!! Yay, Pauline! 🎆 🎉 🌈
    I also am happy that you are having the “girls” meet the daughters!! 🙂 💖
    The vehicle you pictured looks fun and extra special, too. Have a wonderful time!
    Is it possible my words are in your spam or needing approval? Sorry to be late. . . 🕰️ Enjoy!

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  2. Just fabulous! None of my friends or family blog and they have no concept of the joys! It is such a wonderful community and you and your blogging friends are doing a brilliant job consolidating real connections. Have a cool time! 🙂 ❤

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  3. Sounds like so much fun! I am envious. I’ve seen you on other blogs I follow. Time to start following your blog so that I can read about your adventures.

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  4. I think I should like to be on this kind of holiday! OH WAIT !! I am 😀 😀 😀
    My good gosh, how fabulous are we? LOL. The envy of more than a few, I’m sure of it. Even though Jim and I are now in Australia, I still find myself waking each morning and saying, *wow*! Each day seems to wear us out with fabulous adventures, sights and meals. We pass the young kids out there when we’re on our way home and laugh. They’ll be sleeping late, more than a few will feel hung over. But we’re happy to enjoy the days, drink our lovely chardonnay’s and just drink in the views. Looking forward to making more memories with my favourite girls xoxo Thanks ever so much for inviting and hosting us all Pauline, see you soon xox K

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    • Well you are certainly the envy of many I am sure with your uber posh hotel in the heart of Sydney and all those wonderful events and day trips you are sharing. It’s a tough life but somebody has to do it 🙂 super glad it’s in your hands ❤ And you got me thinking – did I invite? How did this particular ball get rolling – it's been so long in the air I can no longer see the beginning of this particular adventure…… See you soon 🙂

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      • LOL, yes, how and where did this start? I seem to recall a Skype. Maybe I had too many glasses of wine. I think Laurie refilled more than twice too. I finally went to make dinner and exclaimed, “I’m going to New Zealand” to my waiting husband 😀 Then this and that and here I am. (BTW, why wasn’t *he* starting dinner) I hope we didn’t invite ourselves, but that is a possibility…ooopsie daisey xo

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        • Well you wouldn’t have invited yourselves without me being there so it can’t count as that. 😀 You are probably right in your recall – a glass or two of wine and anything is possible 🙂 and there was probably a few independent conversations or plain ‘I wonder if’ moments along the line too. I really have no idea still where the genesis was. But of course that could just be me getting old and doddery – I don’t remember what happened yesterday half the time and 1999 was just five years ago! Still, it doesn’t matter does it because you are nearly here and the others are getting organised and I’ve just made my mind up what to serve for our first meal together 🙂 And written it down so I don’t forget. I do wonder what your waiting husband’s face was like when he heard that news!

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  5. How exciting, Pauline. This looks absolutely fabulous fun. How wonderful for you all to get together – family and friends – for such a fun adventure. The bike tour looks pretty awesome too. I look forward to hearing all about it. Enjoy!

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  6. Pauline, just when I think I can’t get any more excited you go and write this post. You’ve put so much into the planning and arranging of this once in a lifetime visit to your lovely corner of the world. I hadn’t even thought of us touring, drinking wine and cheese (mmmmmmm cheese) museums, harbors, coastlines and that delightful trike. I love crafts, puzzles, eating, drinking, puppy love and most of all, time with the women I love.

    And because I can say it and really mean it now: See you soon! xo

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    • Ha, see the reply I made to Diana’s comment just below this one 🙂 These are all options that are on the table and we might just decide to stay at the table….. It’s a once in a lifetime thing and you’ve got to see something 🙂
      See you soon xoxo

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  7. Oh my goodness. I keep forgetting that you are in your summer, and what a great time for everyone to descend on you! I love the friendships that develop through blogging and they are just as real as any other friendship. How wonderful that now and then we get to meet in person! Have fun, Pauline. It sounds like you have a plan!

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  8. Absolutely fabulous, from the sound of things! Wishing you all a great time. 🙂 I’ve met many wonderful people through blogging. It’s been a while since I’ve met anyone face-to-face, but I’m hoping that will happen this year.

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  9. How fabulous! Have a wonderful time! I know you will.
    When I tell someone that one of my blogging friends has done XYZ, I always feel I should be pointing out that this person is someone I really care about and not just a virtual person! I guess blogging lets us connect with the people we really click with, not just becoming friends because of physical proximity. Although, of course we also really click with some people who are geographical close too xxx

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    • So right!! One of us received a number of comments when we first met up about being naive and not knowing who or what she was meeting – but really? Every time we interact we have an impression added, a bit of knowledge ticked off, a picture built – every bit as real as if we were sitting on the bus together every morning going to work. The ‘clicking’ phenomenon is real and we get to choose on line in a way we don’t in daily interactions. And my world has certainly grown larger and wider and deeper for all the friends I have made here and the interactions shared. I would be poorer without you all!! ❤ xoxo

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  10. Oh Pauline, this entire post has me grinning from ear to ear! I know everyone will have a fabulous time. The power of social media and the internet can (and should!) be used for creating good things like friendships, meet-ups, and adventures! Enjoy! Enjoy! Enjoy! And THANKyew!!! for sharing 😃❤️🌸

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    • 😀 I so agree Cheryl! As usual all the media attention goes to the awful things that happen on line and not these amazing experiences of meeting kindred souls across the miles that would never have happened had we not, for all our own varied and intrepid reasons, decided to start a blog! It really is a wonder!

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  11. This is wonderful! What an example of 21st century pen-friending! You’ll all have a wonderful time! Makes me think I should get back to blogging – it’s been taking a backseat for a while…hmmm. As always, Pauline, you provide food for thought. Have blogging blast😉

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  12. Oh, you are all going to have the most wonderful time and I look forward to reading all about it. Wanaka is beautiful – we loved it and I’m sure your visitors will too. There’s nothing quite like a gathering of kindred spirits.

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  13. I’m guessing you won’t be blogging during this whirlwind of fun and catchups. What a lovely adventure 🙂 How wonderful that Siddy can join the fun too. What is the poor long suffering Orlando doing during this exciting event? I hope it cools down a little for you and your fellow travelers. x

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    • Well, I’m hoping to put something up every day and even if that proves to be a goal to big for me I’ll make sure to post photos for you to peruse. The deal with Siddy is he comes everywhere with me. He is my companion dog and that according to Siddy, is that! He’ll probably spend a few hours in the car, but he doesn’t mind doing that – he works diligently at doing ‘waiting’. Poor long suffering Orlando will be going for his own little holiday at a cattery. He won’t be that thrilled, but he will get good care and lots of attention and will eventually thaw and be friendly. When he comes home again he will tuck his front paw over my arm and ever so gently but strongly hang on to it with his claws just a teeny bit in so I can’t leave him again. This will go on for 24 hours, or until the bags and holiday mess is cleared away, and then he will be fine. Aren’t they a hoot!! I’m sure hoping it won’t be too hot – we’ll see.

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  14. I am so excited for you. I could never plan such a wonderful visit for everyone here. I love the idea of the open car tour! How wonderful it all sounds. Like one huge party. Looking forward to photos and stories. I’m sure you will have so many as will all those visiting. I did not know Mike was going to join you all and your daughters as well. I would be so tickled too. I almost feel like I will be there if just in spirit. Siddy will be in petting heaven. I can hardly wait to hear everything. Giant hugs. M

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    • My girls could not possibly allow these women who have become so dear to me to come through and not be part of the party – they feel they know them already and the ‘meeting’ is just a formality. There’s no way I could host everybody here in my tiny house either Marlene, which is why we are going to go stay in someone else’s holiday house. It’s a fantastic big house – I’ll put some pics of it up on my next post. Having Mike fly in just for a couple of days is just the icing on the cake really. It’s all worked out so wonderfully – I feel really blessed! We’ll make sure to raise our glasses to you darlin’ – you’ll be in our hearts!

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  15. Pingback: Counting Down – The Militant Negro™

  16. I love this! Your trip to DC seems like yesterday. You’re going to have so much fun with your guests. I have no doubt that you’ll be a great tour guide and the perfect hostess. We’ll look forward to photos! Enjoy! xo

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  17. I know you’re all going to have a ball. You’re such a nice lady Pauline I wish I was one of those venturing over there but my fingers would be no good for crafting I’d soon be sent packing.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

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  18. I love how you started the post about blogging and what we might have expected from it – such a great story!

    As a mom of a (100 pound) dog, I envy your ability to fearlessly travel with Siddy. I guess you just assume he will be on his best behavior at all times? There’s no way I could take our Riley on such a trip. She’s wonderful, but it would be all about her.

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    • I know right? I started blogging very naively I now think and am constantly amazed at the lovely people who pop in and out of my life as a result. Has it been the same for you? As for Siddy – he is happy as long as he is with me. After me he loves best treats and other people. He will be in heaven!! He weighs less than 10kg so isn’t the mass of your Riley – but it is still all about him. 🙂 He’s usually such a good boy though that he is quickly forgiven any behaviour that is less than perfect….. Luckily almost all the people are dog people – there’s just one who has never had much to do with dogs but I’m fairly confident Siddy will win the day there too 🙂

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  19. Woo hoo!!! You are all going to have a blast!!! I will look forward to the news and the tours. At the moment, I’m getting ready for a friend’s visit at the end of next week–and more Washington touristing!! Plus cooking, baking and other stuff…Wanaka is supposed to be fabulous. I hope everyone finds their own piece of fabulousness there and we get lots of good blogs.

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    • Yes, Wanaka is fabulous – that whole Queenstown – Lakes area is a visual delight. Much of the Lord of The Rings was filmed around here and the nearby alps. I’m looking forward to the break too, it will be so nice to be somewhere else as I haven’t been anywhere but here for so long. 🙂 And I’m looking forward to good company and gentle days 🙂 I hope you have a nice visit with friends too – there’s some good cooking going on in that nice new kitchen!!

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