I could not have asked for a better host to introduce me to such a beautiful country! "Mase," as his students call him, provided me with ample opportunities to get out and be active, while learning a bit about Kiwi culture at the same time! In my first five days, I went to an intense Bikram yoga class, rode a bike to some beautiful cliffs overlooking Auckland and took a walk with my camera, chatted with some neighbors, tried Marmite, sat on a deck overlooking the ocean to draw, learned the difference between the buttons on a Kiwi toilet, climbed at an enormous indoor rock climbing gym (and began to figure out the comparisons between NZ and US route ratings), discovered a chocolate bar called "Dairy Free" that tastes amazingly like milk chocolate, tried to play the Ukulele, army-crawled through the "Cube of Doom" (an awesome self-esteem/self-discovery/trust/courage-based maze challenge Mase built in his outdoor education classroom), hiked/tramped for probably 12 hours in a matter of 3 days, slept in a bivi under the stars, taught some introductory yoga to high schoolers, played an extreme game of Egyptian Rat Screw with some random working holiday travelers in a hut up in the mountains, actually ran out of games and challenges stored in my brain because these high-schoolers had seen them all, took a dip in some f-f-f-freezing springtime river water, picked up on some teenage Kiwi slang, learned how to use trekking poles, swam in a pool fed by natural hot springs, got "take-away" and ate dinner by the sea, went climbing again (and can now brag about how I'm climbing 20s), and figured out how to get to my next destination via public transportation! There has been so much packed into my days that I can't possibly describe everything!
I wish I could add more right now but I have to go pack up and catch the bus!