Wellington, New Zealand
One of my favourite things about the trip has been meeting up with friends old and new. So, after dropping Yoko at her hostel, I made my way to Perin’s place in Wellington’s Brooklyn neighbourhood. After meeting her husband in Bangkok, it was especially fun to see her. To my delight, she was able to get us tickets in the Deloitte box for the Wellington vs. Canterbury rugby final. I’m not really much of sports buff, but it was fun to see a live rugby match and to meet some of the Deloitte staff from New Zealand – many of whom hail from elsewhere. After leaving the match, we made our way home. Few of the houses in New Zealand have central heating and with the cool spring weather still in force, I was able to crawl into an icy bed. Just like Canada. Yaay!
The next day, Perin was in a photography course, so I explored the city on my own and took care of arrangements for rental cars, ferries, trains, planes and hostels. Wellington is the only place I’ve been where wind turbines serve as a landmark and a tourist attraction. I think they’re beautiful pieces of infrastructure, but it’s still amusing that people hike (or drive) up a mountain to see one.
After walking around the city, I made my way back to Perin’s where we met for dinner. On the way, I passed through Central Park and noticed a couple of zip lines that were being monopolized by a couple of kids. I think they viewed my interest with some suspicion (you’re old! why would you want to play on this?), but they gave up one of the zip lines long enough for me to try it out. So fun. After some games in the park, I returned to Perin’s and we made our way to Wellington’s popular Flying Burrito Brothers Mexican restaurant. It didn’t hold a candle to Taqueria Guadalajara in San Francisco’s Mission district, but it was not bad.
After a failed attempt to locate some penguins and a dessert beer, Perin and I retired for the night. The next morning, she graciously dropped me at the Interislander ferry terminal and I was off to Picton on the North Island.