Monday, December 3, 2007

Monday Dec. 3rd AGAIN!

OK, I made it back to Los Angeles in once piece but once again, I had a little horror moment at the airport when all the bags had come and the people had gone and I was still waiting for my blue bag with my waders, wading boots, rain jacket and reel, etc.; all very expensive top of the line items and nowhere in sight! Gads, here we go could one bag get there without the other when they were checked in together at the exact same time? So I waited and I waited and the guy took my baggage check tags upstairs and was gone for what seemed like an eternity. The entire customs area was cleared of people now as they were all on their way to either connecting flights or home. So, I sat and finally the guy returned and guess what? He had my blue bag with him. I’m not going to even try to figure that one out...I was just very happy to see that bag so finally I was out of customs, returning my just found bag back to the luggage handlers to transfer to my other flights and off to a new terminal to do more waiting, Good thing my flight wasn’t for another 2 1/2 hrs.

Now I’m on the plane from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City. Only a 1 hr and 20 minute flight and then another wait there, until my flight to Butte which doesn’t leave until around 9:30 PM. I’m getting closer and it’s getting colder. The temp in Salt Lake is 34 and I’m sure will be even colder in Butte.

Actually it was warmer in Butte...figure that one out! It was in the 40’s which is a heat wave compared to what the temperature has been...frozen pipes, remember? So I managed to get all my luggage so I was homeward bound for the last and final leg of the trip....and as it turns out, my calculation was off; it only took 29-1/2 hours to get home from door to door. Yeah, ONLY 29-1/2! No snow on Homestake Pass and no ice but wow, what a dark night. I was the only car for miles and it was pitch black out there.

The girls were thrilled to see me and I was ecstatic to see them....that’s Maggie and Madison (dog and cat). So now it’s back to reality and work, work, work. It was a great trip and one of the more relaxing New Zealand trips for me. Usually I do much more running around and don’t get much chance to stop and smell the roses. Oh, and that reminds me...the roses down there...I’ve never in my life seen such beautiful roses.

They seem to grow like weeds and they are very fragrant. So many gorgeous gardens and I can’t say enough how nice it is to visit New Zealand in the springtime.

I had marvelous weather and good fishing except at the end and that was a weather issue.

I’d highly recommend visiting New Zealand in November as it is before the hectic tourist season really gets underway and is much less busy. Once February comes around look out. The population explodes with tourists so November is a great time to visit. If anyone would like to do an itinerary similar to the one I just did, you can contact me for information and I’d be happy to organize something similar or to your exact specifications. After all, this is what I do for a living. Until we meet this way again, tight lines and best wishes for a festive holiday season.

Mary E. Smiley
Angler’s Passport Travel
Whitehall, Montana USA

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