September 12th, 2005


o~ There are no shee-eep on their faa-aarms... o~

I'm not kidding. I didn't see a single sheep while I was there. I saw some cows, they were very different looking, rangy and with saggy skin and large horns. There is much open grassland with nothing on it. The farmer in me was inspecting pasture types and water availability and doing calculations of how many sheep each bit of countryside could support, and lamenting the lack. The rest of me was going 'Wow, pretty!'. OK granted I only went to two states and they are dry ones. Everything was very brown and there was no rain at all while we were there. Residents of SF assured me that it does rain, and often all at once in a compressed period of time.

Speaking of which, I was very impressed with the attitude of people at BM who were from New Orleans. They'd packed for a week, and then within a couple of days what they had with them was all they owned in the world. Hard times, but the attitude was basically 'can't do anything about it, may as well enjoy ourselves'. Gotta admire that, when the world at home was crumbling.

I also admire the openness of the American people. They are so much less reserved than kiwis (in general). I went there with preconceptions of what it'd be like and was educated in a positive way. The media we get here doesn't do them justice. The people I mean, not the government. I had so many people apologising to me for the Bush Administration.. Anyway, big ups to the Americans who read this - for your openness, friendliness, generosity, and for the great way you say 'Thank you'.. and for hugging.

But... where are all the sheep?

In other news, there isn't any. The only news I got while there was internal. I have no idea what's going on in the rest of the world. So, if you will, to save me some time, could you please comment with things of interest that have happened in the last two weeks, both here and abroad? That would be very cool.

Lastly, work is not the disaster-area I expected. In fact, I came back to 'Whoah, NZQA must really like you!' and a pile of confirmations and validations of my work prior to leaving. *skips* *adds to the 'I rock' file*

Wellington rocks. I don't have to remember which way to look before crossing the road, amongst many other reasons, not least of which is the beautiful weather.

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