Saturday, September 17, 2011

California Kiwi

In the last few weeks we have been based in San Jose with Forrest's family. The long stay began with Forrest's good friend Mary's wedding. Mary married John in Pacifica, CA. The ceremony was held in a uniquely charming setting and we had a wonderful time helping them celebrate! A full album of the photos is located here.

Forrest, Tom, Christina and I took a short day hike to the Loma Prieta Earthquake epicenter located in the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park. We picked up lunch at Gayles Bakery under the suggestion of Tom and Christina. Note: Tom and Christina always know the best food options! After the hike we grabbed some ice cream at Marianne's in Santa Cruz. I sort of wish the hike would haven been longer, considering the calories consumed!

We also took one day to check out the Pacific Ocean, near Davenport, CA. The weather was chilly, but that didn't stop some people from nude sunbathing and swimming. After checking out Pigeon Point Lighthouse, we drove back to San Jose.

Last weekend we gathered up a great group of friends and Forrest's family for a farewell party. Great food, conversation and laughter was shared by all and we really appreciate those in attendance taking time out of their schedules to celebrate the upcoming New Zealand adventure.

Monday we drove Forrest's mom down to San Diego from San Jose. Along the way we stopped (first) in Paso Robles for a few tastes of wine. why not, it was 11am. We happened upon a few winerys where 1. the wine pourer was from Christchurch and 2. a winery was owned by a native New Zealander aka Kiwi. I guess it was fate or perhaps the Adjustment Bureau guiding this day.
Next we stopped in San Luis Obispo for a tri-tip sandwich and a brief car tour of Forrest's Alma Matter, Cal Poly.
12 hours after we left San Jose we arrived in San Diego, we were greeted by Forrest's grandma upon arrival. We stayed in San Diego until Wednesday morning and then flew back to San Jose.

We have been waiting for our work Visa to be processed for the last three weeks. Prior to that we waited for our FBI clearance for two full months. Even though we have been exceptionally busy, there was always that overarching feeling that we need the visa paperwork to be processed prior to leaving for New Zealand. Imagine packing for vacation and not being able to shake that nagging feeling that you may have forgotten something and never being able to figure out quite what you forgot. Multiply times 11 weeks and add in an average of 23 questions per family member or friend regarding the move to New Zealand. Suffice it to say, the last few weeks have been challenging for many reasons.

But our patience and hard work has paid off, in addition to me putting myself in "time out" several times (with wine or champagne). Now that we have the work visa in our possession things are moving rather quickly. Our worldly goods get shipped next week, Wednesday via sea. I hope to have them relatively quickly (less than two months). We ship ourselves (via airplane) on Saturday September 24 from San Franciso.

We should be kiwi's very soon! Thanks to everyone for your help and support!

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