Alpine couples meet in New Zealand |

Alpine couples meet in New Zealand

Special to The R-C
Tom and Jane Sweeney, Linda and Jim Holdridge - All current residents of Alpine County
Special to The R-C

These Alpine County couples do know each other but unbeknownst to each other had scheduled separate cruises for New Zealand and Australia for the fall 2018. Just a few weeks before their respective departures, they found out that their cruise ships would make a port of call at the same port on the same day.

The short but advanced notice allowed for the preparation of an Alpine County poster courtesy of the Alpine County Chamber of Commerce and Executive Director Teresa Burkhauser. So despite the ships travelling opposite north-south and south-north itineraries, on Wednesday, Nov. 14 the ships “Celebrity Solstice” and “Holland America Line -Noordam,” had 10-hours at the same time in port at Port Chalmers (population 3,000), the main port of Dunedin a city (population 127,000) on Otago Harbour on the southeast coast of the South Island of New Zealand.

Dunedin is known for its Scottish and the native Maori heritage, Victorian and Edwardian architecture and a large university student population. The day in port for the Alpine County couples included meeting for a tour of Port Chalmers and Dunedin, a tour of the historic “Olveston Mansion” in Dunedin and a historic commercial coastal train along the beautiful sights of the region.

The Alpine tourists departed after a day of touring together with many days of travel ahead of them agreeing to visit again back in Alpine County. So without much research needed, on this particular day, in Port Chalmers, New Zealand, there was a world-record set for the largest number of Alpine County, Calif., residents in the country of New Zealand at the same time.