Might as well go big. Life is too short to not do the things you want to do, am I right?
For those of you who have a slight inclination to go skydiving, 10/10 would recommend. It didn’t really hit me that I was going jump out of a plane until the first person jumped out before me. That’s when I thought, “Oh this is happening.” I got convinced to do a higher jump, so instead of 9,000 feet I did 13,000. It was such a rush. Full send.
I went to my first rugby game (Go Blues!!), and the sport is really something else. It was very ruthless, but I found myself liking rugby more than American football. Rugby is more fast-paced, and how I wish they wore protective padding. The tackling and “scrums” are so brutal.
When I’m not jumping out of planes or going to sporting events, I go to school. My schedule is extremely random due to the fact that I had to take certain classes to satisfy general education requirements back at SDSU (refer to my first blog for the whole fiasco). I am taking “Tourist Behaviour,” “From Savages to Hip Hop Crews: Maori in New Zealand Fiction Feature Film History,” “Professional Wine Studies” and “Food Chemistry.”
I decided to switch out of an 8 a.m., and in place of that I took “Food Chemistry.” This class is definitely a challenge considering my last titration was three years ago. The lab is huge compared to SDSU’s. The laboratory holds two class sections, so there’s roughly 60 people in there at a time. The class is interesting, but ngl it’s freaking hard. Fortunately, a passing grade here is 50%, so fingers crossed I am hoping to at least get that. I know that sounds really low compared to a passing grade of a 75% us Americans are so commonly used to, but I’m not complaining!
I thought I would take “Tourist Behaviour” because I am 100% a tourist, easy-peasy, I got this. However it is quite detailed in theories and memorization. It really has nothing to do with my food and nutrition major, but gotta do it for the GEs. I do find it inspiring to go travel more often, so perhaps a silver lining, but still a detriment to the wallet.
When I was offered a wine class, I immediately said yes. We have been working on food pairings with various wines, and I must say they are quite exquisite. *pinky up* There is a lot more history and science behind wine making and tasting than I originally thought. However, just trust me on this one, a pinot noir with a chocolate mousse = fire. Additionally, my professor takes one sniff and she goes, “Can you smell the paradise, the flamingos and the palm trees swaying?” and I’m over here like “… ma’am I smell alcohol.” Needless to say I have to train my nose, but I do think her observation was a wee bit of a stretch.
“From Savages to Hip Hop Crews: Maori in New Zealand Fiction Feature Film History,” is my second-favorite class. There are only about 15 students in this class, and we analyze how Maori were depicted in films through history. It is not a shock to see that the white man has kept the brown people suppressed. Again, it is just sad to see that it happens elsewhere and not just America. However, we are learning about how the film industry has developed to truly show Maori culture, and not just through the lens of evangelistic views.
So the days are more routine now, more or less. I let my work pile up and that led to a lot of stress. Homework isn’t given. You just have essays to write. Just don’t procrastinate (easier said than done).
But, real talk, I highly recommend applying for scholarships. Shout out to the Associated Students Study Abroad Scholarship, because they basically paid for my flight. I should’ve applied for more, but all good, live and ya learn. Also I opened up a student banking account here, so that I don’t get charged foreign transactions fees every time I buy something. It was pretty easy for the most part; they mail you a document for a proof of address, and you can go from there.
Another side tip is that the pedestrian does NOT have the right of way. You will get run over. Can’t make your guap here sorry!
Am I homesick? Not really. Kinda missing the super bloom. That being said, winter hit me like a truck. I was expecting a nice, easy transition from summer to fall to winter, but New Zealand really did not want to do the whole fall thing and went straight from 80-degree weather to 50 degrees like that. Thankfully I brought thick jackets.
The adventure continues! Stay tuned.
Kaitlyn Cabrera is a third-year food and nutrition student. She is studying abroad for the spring semester in New Zealand at the Auckland University of Technology.