And So the Adventure Begins!

Hello everyone! I am so excited to be able to blog while I have this amazing opportunity to student teach in Auckland, New Zealand! Let me start by saying welcome to my blog. I am excited to share my experiences with you all! As I sit here on the plane, waiting for my flight to take off, I am going to start writing my first blog. What a bittersweet feeling!

Auckland City!

One thing I didn’t think was going to be hard that was before I even left for my trip was packing. It was EXTREMELY difficult to pack for this trip! I will not lie! Trying to pack professional clothes, with clothes to explore and comfy clothes was a hard task. Trying to decide what shirts you really need and some you just like was hard. But by the grace of God, my luggage came in at 49.5 pounds! Successful packed clothes, toiletries, and of course Marymount apparel for our home stay families and mentoring teachers. I will be abroad student teaching with 2 other Marymount students, Sophia Delmare and Zeyna McIlvain.

Being away from friends and family for a long period of time can be hard. Saying goodbye is always the hardest! I cried at least 5 times today alone! It is hard, but it is all going to be so worth it. I am so incredibly blessed to go to such an amazing university where I have the opportunities that I do. Marymount will forever be my home and I can’t wait to come back and share my experience with everyone.

Howick Beach, just a short 5 minute walk from my home-stay.

One thing I have learned before even getting to New Zealand is everything there is very relaxed for them, unlike here in America. They take their time with things and are not as rushed as we are! I am not sure what age I will be teaching yet, but once I find out, I’ll let you know!  Some information I have about our trip: we are staying at a home stay. This lovely couple had opened their home to Sophia and I for the next 7 weeks. We will be doing our placement in an elementary school. It is summer time there currently so we will be going to the beach, so be on look out for pictures! Other than that, I do not have much other information at this time.

During my time away, I want to take the time to share a life lesson I have learned from the week.

Life lesson this week: Arrive early to the airport! TSA sets those guidelines for a reason.

Sophia and I flew out of Dulles International Airport together. I arrived to the airport about an hour before Sophia because I had family drive me to the airport. As I arrived at the airport, I noticed our flight was delayed. Not only was it delayed, it was delayed so long that it was going to cause us to miss our connecting flight to New Zealand! I panicked! This is the first time I have had this happen to me. Calling my mother in a panic asking what to do, she instructed me to go to the ticket counter and see what other flight options we had to get to our connecting flight on time. The ladies at the ticket counter were so incredibly kind and helpful, they changed our flight to the earlier one. Great, awesome, so helpful right? Well, no, wrong!! Sophia was still in security waiting to go through. Due to the fact they changed her ticket inside the airport, her ticket on her phone was not “accepted”. With a few tears, she made it through and on to the airbus the airport has. Ever have that feeling that everything is moving so slow around you because you are in a rush? Exactly how we felt! Sophia and I made the plane with 5 minutes to spare. No exaggeration! Downside to being late, and changing flights, our baggage will not be there on time! Let’s take guesses to how many days it’s going to take for them to get our baggage to our home stay. Therefore, life lesson, arrive on time!! We are about to take off, so time for me to go!

New Zealand is made up of about 600 islands; this is one of them!

Thank you for reading my blog. Like I said before I am so grateful I have this opportunity to blog and post about my experiences. Come back next week to see how the first week of school went!

Keri Mignano

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