December 5

Today I was able to experience the beginnings of the holiday season in New Zealand. It is very strange to celebrate the approach of Christmas while the sun is shining and the weather is warming. Kiwis have no reservations about celebrating Christmas, not just “the holidays”.  Commercials, greetings cards and signs all refer specifically to Christmas, without any worry for political correctness. On my way to run, I came face to face with my first Christmas parade. There were numerous decorated floats with participants throwing lollies (candy) into the crowd.

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After watching the parade, I worked out with my new running buddy!

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(She doubled my usual distance!) Jess is a border collie mix who lives at my hostel. She is the most relaxed dog of all time!

In the evening I got to appreciate more holiday spirit!

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