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A trip to the mountain before the ski season starts

Our first visit to a ski area

Our first visit to a ski area

We made it to our first ski mountain in New Zealand just before the season started. This was a trip organized by members of the university and we decided to join them as we know quite a few of the folks on the trip. A two days one night trip, this would be our first visit to a ‘soon be covered’ with snow mountain. With Yang Yang along, it is always extra worry for me and extra joy for Meun.

Continue reading A trip to the mountain before ski season. Part 1

Fishing on weekends

Now I have someone who will hopefully learn to enjoy fishing with

Now I have someone who will hopefully learn to enjoy fishing with

I remember growing up in small town Baling as a kid fascinated by all things to do with catching fish. I’d ride my bike to a place call Dalam Wang (quite a distance really) to fish for Tilapia then cycle back all the way home just in time to change into uniform and go to school. Fishes I caught would always end up as dinner. Those good old days never left me. Many places I went in the past years I fished and fished. While I did not catch anything ‘great’ back in Malaysia, my luck seems to have changed here. Fishing in NZ on weekend for me has so been awesome.

Continue reading Fishing on weekends

Willowbank park- nature place in Christchurch family must go

Fantastic place for an entire family to visit!

Fantastic place for an entire family to visit!

You should bring your family to Willowbank! Yang Yang would love it there!‘…those were the first recommendation of place to visit by one of Yang Yang teachers the first day we visited his pre-school. Weeks after weeks the name of the place kept popping in my head. I asked a few Kiwis I met and it seems to be a popular enough place that most of them have been to the place at least once in their life. So, when Meun’s dad came over for a visit, we decided that its time we paid Willowbank Wildlife Reserve a visit.

Continue reading Willowbank park- nature place in Christchurch family must go

Our first trip to Akaroa

Akaroa is perfect for nature lovers- kayaks can be rented for a few hours of paddle

Akaroa is perfect for nature lovers- kayaks can be rented for a few hours of paddle

Akaroa- the French ‘flavored’ town about an hours drive from Christchurch is simply beautiful. I was already silently cursing for not checking the date of our trip which coincided with the 100km LeRace cycling event but the stunning views and relaxing atmosphere of the town immediately won me over. The town nestles inside a sheltered bay, making it a perfect place for water based activities. There were some kayaking tours happening and my first thought was the river kayaking trip I did with Chadel some years back.  Damn I miss those paddling days.

Continue reading Our first trip to Akaroa

Driving to Akaroa with LeRace cycling event

It was a beautiful and perfect day for a drive through the back country of New Zealand

It was a beautiful and perfect day for a drive through the back country of New Zealand

Akaroa is the name of a place we keep hearing from friends. From a few short conversations, I gathered the place is a charming and perhaps a romantic place not too far from Christchurch that many would go on weekends and extended holidays. We promised ourselves we would go for a ‘treat’ once I get my first pay. It was payday on the Wednesday and we were on our way to idealistic Akaroa on Saturday. It was an exceptionally beautiful morning for a drive. We cruised through some really nice ‘rural’ parts of Canterbury and made a few quick stops to take pictures. Everything was going so well…until…

Continue reading A cyclist paced drive to Akaroa; Part 1

Buying cheap clothing in Christchurch, New Zealand

My personal favorite store in Riccarton market, Chirstchurch.

My personal favorite store in Riccarton market, Chirstchurch.

Yes, I have decided to write a short guide on where to get cheap clothes in Christchurch, New Zealand. This is definitely not my usual ‘rainforest adventures’ post but  hey, its still an adventure which I think will benefit some people coming to this part of the world.

Continue reading Cheap clothes in Christchurch, New Zealand

Malaysian car mechanic En Nazri in Christchurch, New Zealand

The car's engine being checked and gasket changed to stop the leaking oil.

The car’s engine being checked and gasket changed to stop the leaking oil.

A car and an affordable mechanic I can rely on in Christchurch are two things that haunted in the first week in New Zealand. New Zealand is a country to be seen, appreciated and enjoyed. While we can probably get around in public transport like buses, having your own vehicle means you can haul loads of stuff…stop wherever and whenever you want and probably save on travelling time. The best place to look out for a car to buy in New Zealand is Trademe (that’s what everyone tells me anyway). And by the second week, we already got our own car, an old 1995 (A) Toyota Previa.

Continue reading A reliable car, a good mechanic in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Christchurch...a new adventure begins.

Just landed! The beginning of a two years adventure in Christchurch begins

Just landed! The beginning of a two years adventure in Christchurch begins

Our flight from Sydney to New Zealand landed safely in Christchurch at around midnight. It was a full plane and naturally clearance took some time. Walking out to pick up our luggages, it is a strange feeling that the airport is somewhat rather ‘small’ and ‘old’. Oh well…doesn’t matter really. The immigration officer was super friendly and customs clearance was smooth. As we struggle out with our trolleys, we were greeted with an elderly man holding Meun’s name on a play card.  Such a good, polite gentleman. As we loaded up the bags into Doug’s trailer…I could not help but realize how cold it was…and it is summer!

Continue reading Christchurch…a new adventure begins.

Sydney Taronga zoo stop...on the way to New Zealand

Our bags all loaded up...next stop...KLIA. Destination...New Zealand!

Our bags all loaded up…next stop…KLIA. Destination…New Zealand!

 

Yes! We are finally in New Zealand now! Its been a crazy few months preparing for this (temporary) move. Meun was awarded a scholarship by the New Zealand government to further her studies at Lincoln University. It was a tough choice to move the entire family (I miss my Sox) but it is also the obvious choice. We have two years here so we make our very best of it. As I am writing, it is 830pm here at Lincoln, the weather is fine and the family is already asleep. Life is good here.

Continue reading 2 nights in Sydney on the way to New Zealand!

Terra Farm Tree Houses in Cameron Highlands, a magical place

Rachel (right), a nature lover, bushcrafter and good vegetarian cook too!

Rachel (right), a big nature lover, bushcrafter and good vegetarian cook too!

I would not have agreed to visit Terra Farm in Cameron Highlands if it is not because of my friend Rachel Lee who (at that time) was working there. Actually, it seems more like she is ‘running’ the entire place on her own! There is so little (good) information about Terra Farm tree houses available on the internet. I was relentlessly pursuing Rachel with questions after questions and she patiently came back to me with information that I need.

Continue reading Cameron Highlands Terra Farm Tree Houses