It has been three months since I got back to the States.  The summer was busy and I am just now redoing my Website and had the chance to review the blog and the stories within.  

I was sitting the other evening with a student and faculty member who had been on the 2011 study abroad trip.  We were at a friends house and one of the people we were visiting asked a couple of basic questions.  What was the trip like?  Who are the Maori?  How is New Zealand different?  What followed was almost an hour of questions, comments, and discussion about the New Zealand experience.  They talked about the Maori, standing under the first electric generating wind turbine in New Zealand and listing to it hum and vibrate.  Visiting the Lord of the Rings sites, and the interactions with the Maori at Te Puia, Mitai, and other locations around the country.  

What I realized while listening to the conversation was how much of an impact those three weeks had on both of the people I was with that evening.  There world views and general perspective on the States and its place in the world as well as having more global frame of reference could not have been better demonstrated. 

All of this because the Chicago Bears recruited/drafted a converted rugby player from New Zealand who is teaching the defense the haka.  

So, below is the blog from the 2013 trip from the beginning.