We arrived in Foxton Beach, a small beachside town about an hour and a half north of Wellington, to stay with Heather and Colin: two incredibly generous and passionate individuals. They are the parents of my dad's colleague Nicky and surprise surprise they have actually been to my hometown, Rockford Illinois, multiple times. They hung out a blanket with the stars and stripes on it to welcome us as we rolled into town around 9:30pm on Tuesday after our day at Tongariro.
We could not have been luckier to have the opportunity to be so well taken care of: I cannot wait to meet Nicky when I return to the States so I can properly thank her in person for gifting her parents to us. Heather and Colin's house is amazing: they had beautiful vegetable gardens and a bed for each of us! We were prepared to simply sleep on the floor - we were just excited to be out of the cold and indoors! Our exhausted bodies slept forever in our warm beds and we woke up very late the next morning for fresh tomatoes on toast. Delicious!
Heather and Colin took us on a fantastic 2 hour walk around The Point along the beach. Dan and I had a great discussion about making life choices outside the box and how that can make other people feel insecure about their own choices. The water was warm and we picked up sea shells and chased sea gulls and took many many photos. Heather and Colin were kind of a fascinating novelty for us: they've traveled extensively around the world and had great stories and photo books for us to look through. Heather has a huge collection of little fake turtles that she or others have brought back from around the world and each turtle has its home town written on its bottom. The turtles were such a testament to their life journey and experiences.
We ate so much fresh and delicious food while we were with them - we were terribly spoiled in a very short period of time. They took us Lawn Bowling which was great fun: Dan and I VS Mike and Tim. We kicked their asses. It was a wonderful day that allowed us to also skype with our parents (yay!) and do our laundry (double yay!). We had an incredible dinner: chicken patties, chicken sausages, chicken legs, potatoes, peas, corn on the cob, bread, bread pudding, and a delicious cold salad of avocados, tomatoes, and cucumber. With very full bellies we fell asleep after a much needed laid back day.
Special thanks to Heather and Colin for being such caring and generous hosts to these four Americans. We received much more than expected and will never forget it. Special thanks to Nicky for her making everything possible: you have impacted our trip in a positive and wonderful way.