As of today, it has been 1 year, 3 months, and 20 days since I got back from New Zealand. Which is crazy. And shows just how much I have procrastinated writing this last blog. Partly I’m just a procrastinator. Partly I felt like I would have to close the New Zealand chapter of my life for good if I wrote this post and officially finished the blog series of my travels. But I know that the longer I wait to write this, the less I will remember. It’s incredible how fast I’ve forgotten things about my trip, which make me even more glad that I blogged about the entire thing! So, without any more delays, here is the last blog of my New Zealand adventure.
When we unloaded I followed the signs to get through customs and was extremely underwhelmed with the signs.
For comparison, this is what the New Zealand welcome entrance looks like
and they have native music playing.
I got into the very long line at customs and waited. Thankfully my flight wasn’t until 3:30 PM so I wasn’t worried. The form that I had to fill out for customs asked if I had been on any farms/ranches/pastures or been in close proximity to livestock. So I had to answer yes, even though it had been months since that had happened. Because of that I got pulled to the side and I had to help them hunt down my bag so they could look at my shoes to make sure I wasn’t bringing in any mud/poo/whatever. Which was slightly nerve wracking. I finally got through all of that and had my bags, etc. and was trying to find where the Southwest flights were so I could wait for my flight to Dallas. Aaaaaaaand then someone told me that Southwest doesn’t fly into that airport, they fly into the airport on the other side of the city which is an hour away. Whoops. I then realized that I had not paid close enough attention and had no idea that there were even two airports in Houston. I found out that they have a shuttle that goes to the other airport (for a rather high price) so I booked a trip there and waited for what seemed like forever. I was so afraid that I was going to miss my flight. While I waited I called my mom to let her know that I was back in the USA. 🙂 I was trying to surprise as many people as possible so I had only told my dad and my brother when I was coming back. But my mom wanted a little bit of warning to prepare so I called her to tell her. She was a little excited. 😉 I visited with a couple from New Zealand while I was waiting for the shuttle, which was fun, and then the shuttle got there. We made it to the other airport by 2:30 PM and I hurried through checking my bags, etc. and made it onto the flight in time and even got a window seat! Whew!
Once we took off I ordered the most Texan thing I could, Dr. Pepper! 😀
We landed in Dallas around 4:30 PM and I got my bags and my brother, Grant, picked me up. 😀 I gave him some of the chocolate caramel slice that I brought from New Zealand, which was fun. I love getting to share some of my experiences with others!
From there we went and surprised Grandma at the memory care facility where she goes to feed Grandpa. And after that we dropped by Mamaw & Pop’s to surprise them. 🙂 I love getting to surprise people! We didn’t get to our parents’ house until around 11 PM and I was ready for bed. I got to see my parents but Carmen & Olivia were already asleep so I waited to surprise them the next morning. 🙂
Also, because I was surprising my sisters my mom made a sign for me later in the week, which was so sweet. 🙂
It was great to be home with my family! 🙂 I will probably do one more blog just reflecting over my trip looking back.