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World Dairy Expo is always enjoyable

I’ve just returned home from my third stint at the World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wis., with Bonnie Mohr and staff, and as with every year, the experience was incredible and very enjoyable.
At the World Dairy Expo, which is the largest international event for the dairy industry, there are daily cow shows for the seven breeds (Ayrshire, Brown Swiss, Guernsey, Holstein, Jersey, Red and White and Milking Shorthorn) and a “supreme champion” show for the best cow of all breeds, which is held the final evening of the Expo.
The big event also houses several booths and exhibitors promoting animal nutrition, the latest in dairy farming technology and techniques, farm equipment, agricultural media and, not to mention, free samples from local creameries and ice cream companies, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Badger Dairy Club grilled cheese stand.
Of course I indulged in a cup of Mackinac Island fudge ice cream and a swiss grilled cheese.
But besides the unlimited cheese curds samples and the daily ice cream specials during the five days that is Expo, the best part about the entire event is meeting new people.
I’m not kidding you — thousands and thousands and thousands of people from all over the world attend the World Dairy Expo, including those from Australia, Colombia, Spain, Japan, China, Turkey, Israel, Brazil, England and South Korea, to name a few.
This year, I met several people from New Zealand, and couldn’t resist telling them that New Zealand is my number one dream place to travel to.
For the past two years, I’ve been researching New Zealand, and learning about its two islands, its rich history and goverment entities, and drooling over its majestic and magnificent landscape.
In New Zealand, there are plenty of opportunities to kayak rivers that wind through towering mountains, hike through lush jungle vegetation and atop expansive rolling hills and rigid cliffs, swim with dolphins and snorkel the Cathedral Cove on the North Island and take whale-watching tours in Kaikoura on the South Island.
So you can see why I want to visit that country and possibly live there.
I was helping two New Zealander men, Ian and Mark, or “Kiwis” as they are called, choose a few of Bonnie’s prints for display, and had the most enjoyable time talking with them about their country and their time in the United States.
I told them about my love for New Zealand and my hopes to travel there some day. “I wonder if you’ll fit in my luggage,” Mark laughed in his precious New Zealand accent, and I said, “I WISH.”
I’d have packed up immediately if I could.
The two left me their names, e-mail addresses, physical addresses and phone numbers and said they’d love a visit when I get to New Zealand.
On Saturday, the final day of the Expo, they even stopped by Bonnie’s booth for a wee bit to say good-bye and wish me well.
It’s connections like these that make traveling so fun (and inexpensive), and my co-worker at the Expo, Nancie, suggested I contact them to see if I could work at one of their dairy farms.
A genius idea.
I better start saving my money.