Bethells Beach, New Zealand
 

Hello from the other side!

After a six-hour flight from Montreal to Los Angeles, followed by a three hour layover, and another thirteen hours in the air, I finally made it to Auckland, New Zealand. It was a funny feeling to depart from Montreal on Thursday afternoon, skipping Friday and landing here on Saturday morning. #timetravelingisreal

I am incredibly lucky to be here as part of an international exchange program with my summer internship. New Zealand is one of those places that we hear about and see in movies, but feels so out of reach, as it is literally as geographically out of the way as it can get. So, I am even more thankful to be here as I'm not sure when I would have had the opportunity to visit otherwise. For one month, I am joined with Kearan, a fellow intern from Calgary, to work hard and play harder in this beautiful country. 

Despite the long flight, the excitement of being on new land mustered up enough energy in us to last a full day of exploring. Kearan's friend, Sophie, whom she met while on exchange in England, was kind enough to give us a warm welcome to her hometown, and show us the west coast. Just a 40-minute drive from downtown, we found ourselves barefoot on the breathtaking black sand beach of Bethells. (I just inadvertently dropped an alliteration.) 

I have been stalking places to visit on the internets before actually getting here, so I was pretty prepared to be awe-struck by NZ's nature. But Mother Nature never fails to impress.

The soft sun rays against the black sand glittered like a fresh eyeshadow palette. Dogs skipping in and out of the water, an embodiment of pure joy. Cliffs jutting out of the crashing tide producing meditative songs. 

Some sceneries just milk poetry out of ya. 

Just before the sun set, we discovered a black sand dune tucked in the middle of two hills. Calling it sand is inaccurate; grain so fine and soft that it feels like custard between your toes. I am not exaggerating people! We dune'd it out (making non-verbs into verbs is a hobby of mine), tumbling down, running back up, rolling, all that jazz. I definitely did not expect to be voluntarily rolling in sand my first day in NZ, but I can't think of a better start to our adventure.  

Kia ora! 

xo, Dahye