I spent this last week in Auckland working at TRENZ, New Zealand's largest tourism industry event that aims to keep New Zealand in the minds of international travellers. It was a tiring 3 days of 15 minute appointments and lots of socializing every night. It was a great opportunity for me to network and learn alot more about the industry. The mood was hopeful despite the world economy, and I see the opportunity for me to add value because of my previous experience working in technology. It makes work even more exciting now.
Tourism New Zealand was celebrating the 10 year anniversary of the 100% Pure campaign. I LOVE this campaign! One of the videos produced as part of this campaign is what was one of the driving factors in bringing me to NZ. Take a look in my "Must See Videos" section (on the right side of the page). Because of the anniversary and the tourism commitment of the new government, New Zealand's prime minister, John Key addressed us during lunch. He also visited our stand where I had the opportunity to meet him. Yep, my mum would have been proud. (My brother & sisters will understand this.)
The week ended with a farewell event on Thursday night. HUGE party with 3 bands ... one of them being OPShop!!! Fantastic! Great music, great food, great drinks, and can these people have a good time! I love how much everyone sings along when they're dancing. It was a big night which ended for me at 4am. Yep, and then I had a business meeting before flying home. I was soooo happy to get home. But I do want to go back ... to actually see Auckland this time.
I had the oppportunity to have some good chats with Tourism New Zealand people. Great advice I received from one of them when I asked how to best acclimate to living in NZ, which I think says it all ... "Be yourself and let your personality show through. If someone doesn't like it, f*^@ them." I knew I liked them for a reason. :-)