Saturday, April 15, 2006

Day 310 - Auckland, New Zealand

Day 310 – 14th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60734

Jill woke up a bit depressed as she had waited over a month to see her favourite band and now she had nothing to look forward too. Also she had now met the two people who she had always wanted to met, Dennis and Butch Walker. Anyway the sun was out and it was a boiling hot day so we decided to go out. We walked down K road and stopped at an internet café, I spent 2 hours updating my blog and checking my e-mail. We then went for a walk, we walked along Queen Street, all the shops were shut as it I Good Friday and we walked all the way to the water front, then we walked around the quays and the marina, it was packed with people have lunch and drinks at the waterside. We then walked through Victoria Park Market and up into Ponsonby, we bought an ice-cream and walked slowly back to the hostel. We spent the evening watching television and cooked at the hostel.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Day 309 - Auckland, New Zealand

Day 309 – 13th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60731

We drove to Mount Eden which has a lookout over all of Auckland, it has a huge crater in the middle of it as I presume it was once a volcano. I took several photos and admired the view and walked around the crater.

View of Auckland from Mount Eden

View of One Tree Hill from Mount Eden

I then drove to New Market which is a suburb of Auckland and we stopped for some food and a wonder around the shops. We decided to buy some wine as we were leaving as it was cheap so we stocked up. We stopped on queen street and bought some DVD’s and then headed back to the hostel. We watched some TV on the laptop for a while and then walked to the Kings Arm venue to see Jill’s favourite band The (International) Noise Conspiracy from Sweden who were doing their first New Zealand gig. We arrived at the venue around 8:20pm and had a few drinks, the first band came on at 9:15pm they were The Mint Chicks a kiwi band. The (International) Noise Conspiracy came on about 10:15pm. The gig was fantastic and Jill and I were on the front row.

The (International) Noise Conspiracy


They played for around 90 minutes and then after the gig we got chatting for 20 minutes or so with Inge the bass player.


On our way out we got to met Dennis the frontman of the band and Jill got her photo taken with him. We had a chat with him and then had to leave as the venue shut at midnight.

Jill and Dennis

Everywhere had to shut at Midnight as no one is aloud to open on Good Friday. So we headed back to the hostel, had a nice cup of tea and went to bed.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Day 308 - Auckland, New Zealand

Day 308 – 12th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60718

We spent the morning walking through Ponsonby and looking in the boutique stores. Ponsonby is a small suburb of Auckland the posh area with the all the nice shops and expensive restaurants.

View of Auckland

We then walked down to Victoria Park market where we browsed the stores and had some lunch. Next we walked back along Queen Street and visited a few shops including Groovy Records which has a fab range of new and second hand CD’s DVD’s and clothes. We then headed back to the hostel where I slept for a couple of hours, we then headed out again and ended up at a Hare Krishna restaurant which was vegetarian and we had a huge meal which was so cheap.

View of Auckland

I then headed off to the casino to play poker, The poker tables were closed until 9pm as the Blues (who I presume is the Auckland Football or Rugby team) were playing Radio Competition winners at Poker. So I had to play Blackjack for a couple of hours, at 9pm I started playing poker but had very bad cards and only had winnings hands twice in three and half hours. Headed back to the hostel and watched some TV before falling asleep.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Day 307 - Raglan - Auckland, New Zealand

Day 307 – 11th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60713

Checked out the hostel and was on the road by 10am, drove North and got to Auckland just after 12pm. We checked into another fantastic hostel called Verandahs.
Met the owner Campbell and he showed us around and said he will give us a night or two for free. Then as we were unloading the car he asked if we wanted to be in a film. We said Yes why not and 10 minutes later we were in a bar and being extra’s in a few scenes for a film being produced for the Canadian and New Zealand film festival. We were told we would not get paid but could have free drinks from the are all day. The first scene we had to hang around in a bar and the next scene we had to rock out to a band, which were actually really good. Anyway the film was called “The Expat” and is a love story between a Canadian girl and a Kiwi man. When we had finished being filmed we went for a walk along k road and bought tickets for The International Noise Conspiracy gig on Thursday. We went back to the hostel for a while to chill out. In the evening we had a walk around the city centre and visited the Casino, like usual I won on Blackjack so we treated ourselves to the cinema and saw “The Inside Man” a great Spike Lee film.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Day 306 - Raglan, New Zealand

Day 306 – 10th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60608

It had rained all night and all morning so we stayed in and chatted to other guests, in the afternoon we braved the gap in the rain to take a short walk to one of the bays but the rain started again and we got a bit wet. The rest of the day and evening we spent hanging around the hostel, watching TV and chatting.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Day 305 - Raglan, New Zealand

Day 305 – 9th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60607

The fire station is at the back of the hostel so in the middle of the night the sirens start blaring for about 10 minutes. I am guessing that it wakes the whole town up so the firemen know to get up and come to the fire station. It sounded like an air raid siren going off. Managed to get back to sleep and when I woke up it was pouring with rain so decided to have a lazy morning, with just a visit to the local shops for junk food. After lunch I went for a walk along the beach and around the peninsula, the sun had decided to come out for an hour so I took advantage before the rain started again.

View of Raglan

Jill and I then went to visit the food market which sold the best Pesto so we bought a large jar and ate it with bread and crackers. In the evening we had a family meal at the hostel, everyone had to cook or buy something, i.e. a meat or vegetable dish or dessert and then it all gets put on the table and we help ourselves. So Jill and I bought a chocolate cheesecake at 7pm we got a huge feast, with Fish Pie, Burritos, pasta salads, cous cous and many many more dishes. We spent the rest of the evening watching a film.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Day 304 - Te Kuiti - Raglan, New Zealand

Day 304 – 8th April 2006 +11:00 GMT Total Miles 60605

We packed up and left the hostel by 10am and drove North up to Hamilton, here we stopped and had a look around the shops and found an internet café. This is the first time we found internet since we had left Wellington, so caught up with my e-mail. We then drove West to Raglan which is on the coast and checked into a beautiful Hostel by the harbour, we have a double room with a view over the water. We decided to go for a walk so had a quick look around the town and then walked down by the harbour and across the bridge onto the peninsula.

Me at the end of Pier in Raglan

Jill on the Beach


We bought vege burgers and garlic chips while sitting by the beach. We then had a walk along the beach, which is amazing black sand, then sand sinks 4 or 5 inches every step. In the evening we went to a local pub which had a live band playing, so we waited for 2 hours for the band to play and they were awful so had to leave.
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