Taking time to readjust to familar things

Trip Start Aug 26, 2012
Trip End Dec 22, 2013

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Flag of New Zealand  , North Island,
Monday, March 25, 2013

After an incredible long journey consisting of a 3.5hr flight to Kuala Lumpur, a quick 2 hr layover, a 9.5hr flight Auckland, anhother layover of 12hr l then a quick 1hr flight I finally arrived in Wellington mid-afternoon on Saturday. It was a 12hr layover or a 7hr wait followed by an 8hr bus ride, what would you have picked?

With very little sleep had during my travels I was tired but tried to stick it out until a decent hour so went for a bit of walk around the city, did a grocery stop to cover my meals over the next few days and went back to the hostel and made a simple dinner of pasta and salad.  I did managed to stay up until 11pm and I was going to bed as everyone as was going out for the night, oh well I'm sure all make up for somewhere along the way here.  It feels a bit weird to be back in a "Western" culture.  There is no longer the feeling that I’m being constantly stared at, nobody trying to get my attention to say hi and practice their English, need to anticipate on what the ”situation” will be when venturing to the toilet and no need to carry toilet paper around anymore.  To the latter I say “hallelujah”, the others I do kind of miss.

The weather here in Wellington is actually quite nice, very windy and in the high teens, however it’s a bit of an adjustment after being in no less than high 20’s for close to three months.   I’m also going to have to re-adjust to prices here.  Travelling in Africa, India and to some respect Sri Lanka has been relatively easy on the pocketbook.  Four dollars for a cup of coffee(not cappuccino or latte) though is a bit hard to swallow right now, but give me a few days, I’m sure I’ll come to terms with it.  I spent my first day here in Welly, doing a lot of walking and taking in a few of the major sights.  My first stop was the Te Papa museum just a cross the street from where I’m staying (YHA Wellington City), walking through the Sunday morning market with so many yummy food stalls (to bad I already had breakfast).  The Te Papa Tongarewa, which literally means in Māori, “container of treasures” is a massive interactive museum that is chocked full of treasures and history about the land, people, and culture.  It a unique place and spent a good couple of hours in there.  Some highlights besides getting up to speed on Maori history was learning about and seeing the colossal squid (http://squid.tepapa.govt.nz/the-squid-files) and getting an experience to see what it would feel like to be in an earthquake in the earth quake house.  With my head dizzy with facts and figures I made my around the harbour and then head back along the shopping area of Lambton Quay to catch the Cable car that takes you up the hill to the Botanical Gardens.  Walking through the gardens I made my way back down into the city and continued along hitting Cuba Street, a funky street part of it being pedestrian only, full of retro shops and funky bars and restaurants.  Being a Sunday and nice day lots of people were out and about shopping and having drinks on the patios.    Wellington is a very liveable city and just in a day can see the attraction for people wanting to live here, just a nice mix of everything and the views are hard to beat.

Hanging around the hostel I met a woman, Janet from Newcastle who has been traveling for 14 months so far and is planning to go for another year.  She is definitely on the slow track and from all accounts thoroughly enjoying herself.  We decided to tackle Mt. Victoria together the next day.  Well tackle maybe a strong word as we were up in about an hour but I will say there were some very steep inclines that definitely gave the legs a good workout.  There were stunning 360 degree views of Wellington and the harbour.  Afterwards we headed down to Oriental beach where Janet wanted to dip her toes in the water which of course was freezing and realized there were numerous clear jelly fish everywhere so the toe dipping was short lived.  I was desperate to get a haircut and was able to find a decent place that was relatively cheap nearby the hostel. It was nice to get a little pampering.  Then in the late afternoon I met up with Ursula who I had met on my Africa trip.  She has re-located on a working visa for a year to Wellington, arriving a week ago after traveling since Africa.   She was meeting me after her very first interview in Wellington and as we were having a beer at a neat pub called the General Practitioner the agency called her and basically said that she had the job.  Fantastic for her but she’s holding out for another interview as it will pay more.  Either way it sounds like she will have a job by the end of the week.  Hmmmm….is it really that easy?  Cristina , who I also met on the Africa trip and has been living in Wellington for five years, joined us a bit later for a drink and then we went to a Korean place for some food.  Very nice to catch up with them and hope I will see them again when I come through Wellington at the end of my trip. 
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Vivi on

You are bringing back fond memories of Wellington! I'm still in Palm Desert but wish I had access to my travel journals so I could recall what I did there. I remember a clock that showed a different piece of a story every 15 minutes (I think). Loving your blogs!

Bev MacLaren on

I so enjoy your posts, Molly! What an amazing adventure you are having and I feel that I am living the experience along with you.
Enjoy the remainder of your journey and keep the blogs coming....Bev

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