Friday, December 23, 2011

Planes, trains, and automobiles!

Okay, so it was mostly planes...

YC14 - in the boneyard.

I made a quick trip to Arizona last weekend, where I checked out the Pima Air Museum near Tucson (super cool - I love that place!), I toured an olive farm south of Phoenix, plus I golfed, and I also hung out with my little sister.

View of the boneyard.

NASA space shuttle parts transport plane (in use until the mid-90's!).
SR-71 Blackbird

One big-ass plane!

A10 Warthogs
Emergency exit?
Golf course greenery. **SIGH** Oh, how I like green....

Teeing off.

My Sista and her hubby.

It was an awesome little getaway, and I can't wait to head back down in the New Year for a visit with the parents!

Happy Holidays to everyone - all the best to you!!


Monday, December 12, 2011


I'm home now - from New Zealand. Wow. It was the trip of a lifetime, a journey that has truly changed my outlook on life. For me, that place was darn near magical - the surreal landscape, the experiences, and most importantly, the amazing people. Of course the time went by way too fast! And I can't even begin to explain what kind of light bulbs went on for me... oh, and sadly, a few went out, too...  What I can say is, that even though my world is probably in the most upside down state I've ever experienced, I'll be able to hang on until it rights itself again. When, or how, or with whom it is going to happen, I have no idea. So I am just gonna roll with it. It is what it is. Life is good!


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

One of the best days, EVER!

Crikey!! I am leaving Queenstown (**SIGH**) in about 12 hours, and I must say, I ended my stay in this amazing South Island town with an incredible day! A local (extremely accomplished!) guide took me and Lilly up Single Cone, a peak with a 360 degree vista which was a bit cloudy, but still beautiful, in an eerie kind of way! It was soooo fantastic!

Still frozen in the alpine.

Love, love, LOVE being up high!

Enjoying the views.

Almost at the summit.

Me and Lilly on the summit.

Summit of Single Cone

Looking towards the Crown Range

The best day yet!! Single Cone is in the background.

On the descent.

Amazing vista!

We were up THERE!

Unbeknownst to me, I saved the best til last... This day of alpine climbing was my favorite activity of the entire vacation, hands-down! I wish I had more time, because I would definitely enlist Bruce (Summits Mountain Guiding) to drag me up more peaks - there are so many to choose from in the area and I didn't realize that until it was too late. Maybe next time!

Alright, well tomorrow I head to Christchurch - via the bus... which should be an adventure in its own right, if the driver is anything like the character who drove us from Fox Glacier to Queenstown... hee hee...

Hope all is well with everybody back home! See you soon!!


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Milford Sound

Today I took a bus trip - a very long bus trip - to Milford Sound, where I took a cruise around the sound and out to the sea. It was sunny and warm in Queenstown, but on the other side of the mountain range, the weather was quite different!

This place is nothing like I've ever seen before. The steep, vegetated cliffs of the sound are cool, almost ethereal, and we saw penguins and seals! The day was fantastic and I'm beat... off to bed early tonite!

Eglington Flats

Cirque near Milford Sound

The view after leaving the Homer Tunnel (google it!!).

Tour Boat


Mysterious Milford Sound

Seal Rock

Putting on a show for the spectators.

Seals lounging on... yep you guessed it... Seal Rock!

Sooooo darn cute!!

Milford Sound


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Wine, wine, and more wine!!

Did I mention how much I'm loving Queenstown!! Wow!!

Today, we went on a wine tour through the Central Otago region. Being the non-connessieur that I am, I was more blown away by the beauty of the area than by the amazing wines I tasted! Hee hee! All of the grapes in this valley are hand-picked, and while there is not a huge amount of production, there are apparently some incredibly fine wines made here. It was such a fantastic day, and if you do happen to be interested, these are the wineries we stopped at: Peregrine, Carrick, Aurum, and Chard Farm.

Peregrine Winery

Carrick Winery

Old Cromwell

Chard Farm Winery

We got back to Queenstown in time to go for tapas and mojitos... mmmm!! Now I have to go find some goodies for my lunch tomorrow - I'm taking a trip out to Milford Sound, to enjoy more stunning South Island scenery!