A (love) Letter to the World

as inspired by Taza, of course.

Dear Australia & New Zealand,
I miss you terribly. Please come back to me!

p.s. New Zealand...one day you will be my home forever.

Dear Calvin Harris,
You are the highlight of my London trip. I am in love with you, your music and your Scottish accent. Please marry me one day.

Dear Auntie I,
I'm so happy that we came to your graduation in Portsmouth. I've had so much fun hanging out with you and A in London. Congratulations again! You did and we're so proud of you! You are amazing.

Dear London,
I could get lost in your museums all day. I love learning. I want to take Selfridges & Co and Primark home with me!

Dear Underground,
A bit of A/C and upgrading would be nice. A life lesson learned...never stand near the closing doors. I'm now paranoid of them. Although, I really do love the Underground musicians.

Dear J,
Secretly I have loved you and can't wait to see you again. There was a musician last night who reminded me of you. A part of me misses you.

Dear friends back at home,
I miss all of you! I'm glad we can kind of keep in touch via facebook, twitter & e-mail.

Dear scale back at home,
I wish you were lying to me. I hope you're wrong. Although I don't believe this lie myself.

Dear sleep,
Where have you been and how can I find you again? I can't seem to get enough of you. I need you.

Dear world,
I am really loving you so much. I've seen lots and learned much this summer.

Love always,



The Down Under: Sydney, Australia

I had never been so excited to fly as I boarded the plane to Sydney. I was shaking with excitement and jumping up and down. I couldn't believe it. I've always wanted to go to Australia. Now my dreams were coming true and this was only the beginning.
After arriving in Sydney, one of the first sights I saw was the Sydney Opera House. Already shocked I was in Australia, I was even more thrilled to see the Opera House. The Opera House is one of those famous landmarks I thought I would never see in my lifetime. Last semester, I studied a little about the Opera House and the architect, Jørn Utzon. Now I got to see the Opera House up close in its architectural grandeur. Jørn Utzon is one accomplished architect. Overlooking the Sydney Harbour, the Opera House truly looks as though the building belongs there. It's an incredible building for its time. How they lifted those concrete slabbed roofs amaze me. Utzon certainly deserves more credit than he received.
Last year when I was in Hawaii, I bought a shirt from Gilly Hicks with 'Bondi Beach' on the shirt. I didn't even know Bondi Beach was in Sydney, so going there made it an exciting trip. Despite the Aussies' bias towards Bondi Beach v. Manly Beach, I absolutely love Bondi Beach. It's now one of my favourite beaches in the world. The sand at Bondi Beach is one of the softest and even though it was a chilly day at the beach, I still ran down to the ocean to dip my feet in the cold waters. There were lots of surfers and a few beach goers laying out on the sand. The houses sitting in front of Bondi Beach are gorgeous. I've always wanted a house in front of the beach.
Our family went to the Sydney Aquarium (Sponge Bob themed). We loved it and ended up spending three hours there. Some of the highlights were seeing a platypus and a dugong. Also, the penguins were probably the cutest sea creatures there. I found Nemo, Dory and Crush. I learned a lot about some of the sea creatures and didn't know some of them existed. Sea snakes? I'm already scared of snakes. And although the platypus looks playful and cute, they have venom in their tails. Oh and I had no clue what a dugong was until I saw one. Their huge size makes them look dangerous, but they're vegetarians. I touched this odd squishy shark (not an actual shark), a starfish and a sea cucumber. Even though I knew they were perfectly harmless, I was slightly scared to touch them. The sea cucumber felt so weird. I jumped and almost screamed.
What seemed like one of the longest days we spent in Australia was the tour we went on. At Featherdale Wildlife Park we saw wallabies, kangaroos and koalas. We loved them all! They're so cute. We fed the wallabies and kangaroos. I didn't want to leave. Wish I could have taken them all home with me. Then we drove to take a picture at the Blue Mountains. We had lunch in Leura. I love that small town with the Farmer's Market and everything. We bought honey there and I learned a bit about honey, too. After lunch, we saw more of the Blue Mountains and the famous rock formations of The Three Sisters. After taking a short scenic tram and an extremely steep cart ride down a mountain, we walked for a while into this forest-like area. There were fascinating vegetation, really pretty. At the end of the day we took a ferry back to Circular Quay and enjoyed a scenic view of the Sydney Bridge and the Opera House.

I love Sydney! We were only there for a few days and I can't wait to go back one day, hopefully very soon. I would love to see more of Australia, the Red Rock and the Great Barrier Reef. One of my favourite places in Sydney is the harbour. On both sides of the harbour, I would always see many runners throughout the day. I can't help but think how much I would love to run along the harbour and take in the beautiful scenery.

The Land of Kiwis: Auckland, New Zealand

When I landed in Auckland, New Zealand I was certain that I fell in love with this country. From the airport window, New Zealand looked like a pretty countryside already.
My mom and I planned on going to the Auckland War Memorial Museum. We didn't know which stop to get off at, so we ended up taking a tour of Auckland from a bus. We didn't mind. Thanks to O (who told me about Devonport), we caught a ferry going there in the afternoon. The sun was out and it was lovely weather. After we got off the ferry, we took a short horse carriage ride. Then we walked up to Mt Victoria. The view on top of Mt Victoria is indescribably beautiful. I don't know if there are words to describe how beautiful it is up there. The grass is so green, from every direction there's an incredibly gorgeous view. From one point you can see Rangitoto Island (which was closed while we were there), the ocean and the Auckland skyline. Also, you can see the rooftops of pretty houses in Devonport. I love their cafes and shops. I want to live in Devonport. Before heading back to the ferry, we ate at a restaurant called Mecca. We had really good soup and they have the most interesting wine cellar. You can actually see the cellar from the floor you're standing on. Before heading back to the hotel, we went to Valentino's Gelato. So good! My favourite flavours there are Passion Fruit and Hokey Pokey (carmel & honey).
We took a bus to see Sheep World. Again, we loved it there! Did you know they have pink sheep? Not even kidding. We saw a dog and sheep show. All the sheep are so cute. The most shocking and sad thing we saw was the sheep being sheared. It just shocked me. I learned that it doesn't hurt the sheep when they're sheared, but still sad. The sheep herder invited everyone to shear the sheep and my brother went up there. Let me say that after seeing a sheep getting sheared, I can never look at my Uggs the same way again. We fed the farm animals, the sheep and ram. The ram terrified me! And one sheep bit my hand. I screamed a little and nobody cared although it didn't terribly hurt. We saw more farm animals. There was this one sheep who looked half dog/half sheep. Not even kidding. My mom and I still laugh when we think of that one sheep-dog?! After Sheep World, we shopped a little in downtown Auckland, which was pretty amazing that we even made it to the stores. All the stores in Auckland close early at 7 pm. The same in Sydney. And I thought our stores in America closed way too early...

My last day in Auckland, New Zealand was sad. I didn't want to leave. My mom and I eventually figured out how to get to the Auckland War Memorial Museum. It is one of the coolest museums I've been to and I learned a lot. They had all these cool dresses they wore decades ago. Surprisingly, they did not look vintage at all. I would wear them. They featured everything and even modern design. I spotted a Mies van der Rohe chair! Although I'm not a big fan of the chair itself. We watched a little bit about Sir Edmund Hillary. I remember reading about him in Time Magazine. I even think Mr. B talked a little bit about him and/or the Sherpas. Then we learned about volcanoes by experiencing a generated earthquake/volcano. While I watched the news reel, I half-believed that this volcano eruption happened. I was standing up the entire time and the floor moved. It scared me. The next day I heard about an actual earthquake that occurred between New South Wales and the South Island of New Zealand. That freaked me out.
So I fell in love with New Zealand. I am going to live there one day. It's literally off the edge of the world and in a different world too. New Zealand is one of most beautiful places I have ever seen so far in the world. They have the greenest hills during the winter. Everyone is really friendly and it's very multi-cultural. I love kiwis-both the people and the bird. I like their laws and it seems like a quiet, peaceful place to live. I'll just have to work on liking LOTR. At least I think I like rugby and the guys who play it. Kia kaha.

I am so grateful and blessed to have been able to see Australia and New Zealand. It's been lots of fun and one of my favourite vacations yet. I miss Australia and New Zealand quite terribly and I wish I could go back right now. My dreams of going to Australia and New Zealand came true. Now I'm off to conquer Antarctica. You better believe it. And the adventures will continue on...

Next stop: London, England


0:18 in Auckland, New Zealand

image via istockphoto

Well hello there! Kia ora! It's actually 0:20 in NZ right now. Way ahead before the other side of the world, back in the US. It's actually 6:17 am back at home. I never quite understand how time works. Especially with all the different time zones. I know it's all simple math, but it's confusing nevertheless. I always get mixed up with time and dates, especially during the summer. I never know what day it is. So far I'm having a lovely time on my trip. All of this has felt unreal. NZ is truly one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I want to live here one day.

I haven't blogged here in a while and thought I would throw in some random facts along with this blog entry. It's been a long day and it's midnight over here. Uh, yeah I have no idea what I'm thinking except maybe I need some sleep.

.I could live off french fries or chips as they call them here. As long as there's plenty of ketchup. (I've been craving some fries)
.I want to live in New Zealand sometime in the very near future.
.I bite my straws and I can't help it.
.Writing and receiving postcards are one of my favourite things.
.I like to spell words the Queen English's way.
.I like to think I can drive on the wrong, err right side of the road. I'd like to try one day.
.Words like 'Quay' and places in the Down Under have cool names.
.I'm scared of fake Dinosaurs. (The ones you see in museums. I saw a few of them while I was in Australia. They creep me out)
.Drinks taste better with ice. I still don't get why more European countries don't have ice.
.I boycott so many things, passionately. And then sometimes I end up liking the very thing I hate. When I go home, I'll try watching the LOTR again. All because of NZ.
.The world's natural beauty never ceases to amaze me.
.I'm in love with the world.



On the 4th of July I watched baseball and fireworks afterwards.
A very American Fourth of July.
(One of the shots I got on my camera)
I love fireworks!


Thanks a million!

Last week I turned nineteen!
I was overwhelmed by the many birthday wishes I received.
Thank you everyone who made me feel special on my birthday.
And I was not making my birthday a big deal at all.
So thank you again to all my wonderful friends! I can't say it enough, but I love you all!
M, I love the sundress! You know how much I love bright colours. Can't wait to wear it on the beach and in the sun.
H, I loved Up! One of the happiest movies I've watched. I couldn't stop laughing.
Z, you know how much I heart Canada. Those Canadians! I'm enjoying all the facts and yes...still laughing. By the way, did you know they mention Peaches and the South Park Movie? I thought of you and AR.
AR, the 1960's Fashion Print is amazing! I can't get enough of it. I love these art & design books.
AT, thank you for the flowers and the movie! I think I'm going to make more trips to the planetarium now. Under the Sea 3D was awesome. The ocean is creepy and pretty at the same time. I learned so much. I had no idea sea creatures are strikingly similar to humans. That coral reefs are so colourful. The word: symbiosis. Sealions are probably my favourite creature in the sea besides turtles.
To my family, thank you! It's been one of my best birthdays yet.


Music, I can't get enough of you.

image via flickr

Music is intoxicating and feels like experiencing a higher power in a church, or just anywhere.


At least I can say, I was not afraid. I loved you all the way. I'd pick the fool any day. You were Romeo, I was a scarlet letter and my daddy said stay away from Juliet. All of the boys and the girls here in Paris. Sing to the night without sight, but with madness. I miss the sound of your voice, the loudest thing in my head. It's just one of those days. Oh Helen. P.S. I love you. And here's to you Mrs. Robinson. Sealion sealion sealion. Billy Jean is not my lover. And it's all love, all love. Middle of the afternoon, I'm always in love with you. For someone half as smart, you'd be a work of art. But you're just so cool, run your hands through your hair, absent-minded making me want you. Blackbird singing in the dead of night. Bounce low, bounce high. I know better not to be friends with boys with girlfriends. Drown me in love. I'm a slave to the wires, I've done this before. I can do it more. Don't let your dreams, be dreams. Fancy footwork, work, work. And when you're fifteen and somebody tells you they love you, you're gonna believe them. Like songs that say goodbye. I'd like to be under the sea, in an octopus's garden. You have stolen my heart. I know the heart of life is good. Prime time of your life. Here's to the nights we felt alive. Our house in the middle of the street. Brushfire fairy tales, itsy bitsy diamond wells. Big fat hurricanes. Now my feet won't touch the ground. Light up the sky, light it up for you. Everyone wants to be Hollywood, like 90210. Me and my man on a plane, fly a way to a better place. My moon, my man's a changeable man. Like a book elegantly bound, but in a language you can't read just yet. Off I go, from where I lay. Playgirl, why are you sleeping in tomorrow's world, hey playgirl. I believe you could be what I need to believe. Let the rain fall down and wake my dreams. Relax, take it easy for there is nothing that we can do. I miss you, I'm over now, I'm through. Save your best for me. If I could open my arms and span the length of the isle of Manhattan.