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Sunday, July 21                                    NZ-USA                                                          Day 22


            We packed our bags this morning for the last time and sadly left Rock and Ice.  We took a bus ride to the Antarctic Center and there we talked to a scientist in Antarctica over the phone.  We were all very very tired because of the previous dayís expeditions.  We were free to explore the entire Antarctic center and had lunch there.  Then we took a ride on this snow mobile, the Hagglund on their make-believe terrain.  It was a lot of fun.  After leaving the Antarctic Center we went to the airport which was definitely one of the smallest Iíve ever seen.  We flew from Christchurch to Auckland where we did some last minute shopping for our family and friends.  After departing from Auckland we took a long plane flight home.  On the plane we amused ourselves any way we could, cards, music, sleep, and mostly talk.  After 8-10 hours on the plane we arrived in Los Angeles.  It was good to see America again after being away from 21 days.  Then we went from LA to Chicago.  In Chicago I had forgotten that food is taxed, unlike in New Zealand and Australia, so I stupidly gave the cashier $4 for a slurpee that was $3.99.  After Chicago, the plane took us home to Richmond, VA, where we were all in tears when we walked away from the plane because we knew the next time we were going to see each other again was at the reunion.  All the parents were waiting for us in the lobby; it was a very heartfelt moment.  I had a lot of fun on the trip and I encourage EVERYONE to participate if you get the opportunity.