Trip Start Sep 09, 2004
394Trip End Ongoing
Despite the bad press and comments from a lot of people, Auckland's not a bad city.
There is such a diverse, widely varied culture here. You only have to take a short walk up Queen St and you will see them all - Chinese, Japanese, Asian, European, Kiwi, Maori, Fijian (especially taxi drivers!), Tongan, Samoan and Polynesian. All scurrying along going about their business. To have so many different cultures residing in one place is quite unique.
The other thing characteristic of living in Auckland is the boy racers. It's just like being eighteen again watching the street racing. But these guys aren't eighteen - they can be any age and are usually male! They will think nothing of screaming up to 40mph in first gear and blasting out the dump valve with a hefty hiss like a whale clearing its blow hole. Every time the lights change to green you know your in for some sort of entertainment, you've just gotta make sure you're well out of the way.
Auckland has got some nice parts, the Skytower gives some fantastic views of more or less everything and offers a nice ledge to jump off. The surrounding areas like Ponsonby, Mt Eden and, Mission Bay are all pretty good places to visit.
I'll miss the friends I've made here as well a the chirpy friendliness of the locals, the cheap internet and most of all the 'Asian food court', where I've spent most of my mealtimes, glaring up at the pictures on the glowing menu boards indecisively, breathing deep in excitement before moving on to the next kitchen. For me, one style of Asian food is hard enough to choose from, but when you have an Indian kitchen offering it's fine specialities, a Chinese, a Korean, Malaysian, Thai, Japanese, Vietnamese, TAIWANESE! and another couple of Chinese BBQ's (in the same room), it's really, really difficult to choose. Believe me. Especially as you get huge portions of anything you like for little more than a couple of quid! The Asian food courts I shall miss dearly.
I've uploaded a few pics of the last few days here outlining one or two highlights, but for now it's goodbye Auckland.
Time to head South, to the West Coast where the coastline's rugged and the winds from the Tasman sea are fierce. Time to try my hand at a bit of surfing!