Not a huge amount to say about today. Its now November 17th. We landed in Auckland, New Zealand at 8:45am on November 17th. Don’t get me started, but two days ahead of when we left Los Angeles on November 15th. Suffice to say, Paula and I are real tired although we do have a second wind of sorts.
We met Kath. Oh, Kath, our tour guide. She is a one-of-a-kind. I wont spoil this thread on that now — tons more to come but Kath is from Portland, Oregon. Has been in New Zealand for 30 years or something. She went on a trip to NZ and stayed. Two dead husbands later and she is now a tour guide part time in summer and a gentleman farmer during the winter season.
I just cant nail on how to describe her. I need more time. She is unique. Gosh, not easy: A mix of a jungle girl, farm girl, hunter and gatherer, off-the-grid kind of lady who seems like she should avoid the city at all costs and stay in the rural areas. Man, I’m so screwing up — Kath is so much more.
Anyway, we went for a 3 hour tour of Auckland which was, eh, ok. Nice to see I suppose. Its a city of some 1.4 million people and very spread out. Very green and lush. All that and surrounded by water, ocean and hilly stuff. Kind of new-ish and kind of small towny. Think of a kind of mix between Vancouver, Portland and something with an e-a-s-y lifestyle and mix in some kind of Norwegian thing there too. Not hippyish like those places, but scenically sort of the same, excluding the mountains. Definitely a mix of the small U.S. west coast city with some small town vibe. Toss in a diverse population made up of tons of Chinese (shocker), East Indian, Polynesian, Caucasian and stuff. Nice enough. Good for 1 day to visit but not a focal point of my trip.
Paula and I hit a wall at noon when we checked into our hotel room at the quaint but very cool artsy Hotel DeBrett just off the main shopping drag, downtown. We slept until 6pm. Woke up, went out for dinner at a super popular place called the Depot, across from the skytower casino and tower. Had a seat at a bar table facing the open kitchen. That was a show alone with the price of admission. Just watching this kitchen knock off dishes in this high volume establishment and in concert was amazing.
We have not seen any of the countryside so that should be interesting. So far its just city which is fine, but not what I want to do on this trip. Lets get our legs moving people. Lets take advantage of my private personal extreme trainer with me.
Came back to hotel and then crashed again. I woke up at 4:00am to start my posts and we are getting picked up at 7:00am by Kath to start our touring out of the city and moving away from the Big Smoke of Auckland.