Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Hi Everyone,

I am back from a fabulous trip to New Zealand, Free Forming with
Prudence Mapstone.  What a grand and glorious time we had.

I found out that while I was away, aol announced that it would
be closing its journals, so I will have to find a new home for
my blog.  We have till the end of October, so I am not in a
panic yet.

We started our journey with a very long flight to NZ.  After leaving
NY very early in the morning on Wed, we arrived in Auckland
about 4 in the morning on Friday.  That's a bummer, what
happened to Thursday?  Of course we crossed the International
date line, so we lost a day (to be recovered on our return).
The tour did not officially start till Saturday, so we had a day
to explore.  We did what every red-blooded woman did in
a new city with lots of shops - we shopped.

During the day, several others showed up at the hotel Mercure
where we were staying the night.  Stephen met
us later on that evening and took us all to dinner at a delightful
Italian restaurant in Auckland, then we all made it an early night,
to prepare for our trip the next day.

The bus picked us up around 9:30 am the next morning and we headed
for Hamilton to visit the Craft and Quilt Fair
 at the Claudelands Exhibition Centre,
where Prudence was exhibiting.

The exhibits at the fair were breathtaking, such
glorious work.

We met back at the hotel to have a little respite, before
heading off to our welcome dinner cruise on the
Waikato River.  The Chilean Rugby team was on board
and they provided an evening of fun.  They took over
the entertainment and were singing and dancing.
The food was served in a manner totally alien to me
and you can see the surprised look on my face.

That stone on my plate is 400 dg and is
cooking my dinner right at the table.

The team having lots of fun.

That was only day one, we all returned to the hotel
ready for a rest.  Tomorrow, we go for a visit
to well known felter, Raewyn Penrose's studio.  Some are
staying on to take a workshop with Raewyn, while
some of us trek on
to the Waitomo Glow Worm Caves.


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