As many of you already know, the Kiwis invented many of the world's extreme sports. Apparently there's something in the air here that makes people want do strange, adrenaline-inducing activities such as bungee jumping, or running down a hill in a water-filled plastic hamster ball.
Getting into the spirit of the local culture is a very high priority for me. Granted, I may yet go bungee jumping and hamster-ball-ing, but what to do now? Of course, my courage is nowhere NEAR enough to do the kind of extreme-adrenaline-pumping sporting that my extremely brave friend Lisa does... specifically, she gets her rushes from singing the national anthem at university basketball games! Eeep. I can jump off a cliff, but forget about THAT level of courage. ;-)
So, in contemplating what else might bring me to the brink of terror (and preferably do so frugally), I came across a bulletin board notice at work. It was New Zealand Blood Services calling out for donors. My blood froze at the mere thought.
Which, of course, meant that I had found exactly what I was looking for. Extreme terror, pushing of physical limits, no cost whatsoever, and hey, maybe even saving a life. And free cookies. Sign me up!
(For those of you who don't know, I am the single biggest BABY with needles... I've been known to cry, whine, see spots, and usually faint when getting one. Hence the unadulterated terror.)
Anyhoo, I managed to give a whole half to 3/4 pint before nearly blacking out! The blacking out part wasn't so fun... or at least, I don't think it was fun, but I can't really remember. Nonetheless, I took the ransom out in cookies, and had an excellent excuse for being spacey in my meetings that afternoon. Quite a good experience, and I think I'll shoot for the whole pint next time.
Plus, I got to learn my blood type! O negative. The Japanese use blood types as horoscopes... Apparently O's are like this. Weird, eh? ;-)