Before I came to New Zealand, I read a guide book that said the weather can and often does change any minute; I didn’t realize how true that statement was.

Just two days ago, I woke up to sunshine. It was about 60 degrees Fahrenheit, and it looked like a promising sunny day. I showered and got dressed and headed out the door to study. I had forgotten I was in Dunedin. A few minutes later, clouds appeared, and it began raining. Of course I wasn’t wearing a jacket and didn’t think to bring an umbrella, but I wasn’t going to melt so I just kept walking. After about ten minutes, it stopped raining and it looked like it was getting clearer. My mood lightened up a little, despite me being cold and wet.

Suddenly, dark clouds appeared and something a lot harder than rain hit me on the top of the head: hail. It was hailing in the middle of Spring! (I later found out from a Kiwi that this is normal for Dunedin). I quickly found shelter and waited about five minutes until it subsided. Finally, sunshine peeked out and a rainbow appeared. I have never seen more rainbows in my life than I have in the five months of being here, but they instantly cancel out the bad weather every time. I can never get sick of seeing rainbows, especially with the New Zealand landscape in the background of them.

I guess the weather changes can be bad, but they can also be good. It is almost impossible to predict what the weather will be like, which makes it impossible to know if you should bring an umbrella or coat with you, just incase. I am still not used to the weather changing so often, and do not understand how the New Zealanders are so nonchalant about it. However, it is nice to see a rainbow every once in a while, and that wouldn’t be possible without a little rain. If the weather can change to bad so quickly, it can also change to good weather just as quick.

Monica Dzwonkowski is studying abroad at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand.