Sunday, October 21, 2012

First day in New Zealand

I arrived Friday in Christchurch. I was invited by my company to help communicate and work on techniques for routing along road networks. Really, though, I came because New Zealand has everything I think I want right now in my life: mountains and adventure.

The flight over went pretty well, all things told. The long haul, from Los Angeles to Auckland, was on a Boeing 777, a relatively new plane. Because of this, it maintains a higher cabin pressure, relieving some of the symptoms of "post-plane" fatigue. I felt pretty good, and was able to sleep quite a bit.

Decent digs.
I arrived to a guy holding a "Michael Rooke" sign, the first, and perhaps the last time I'll ever get that classic greeting at an airport. It was on to the office, then to the car rental place to pick up the car that is to be my vessel of adventure for the next three months. The flat I'm staying in is very nice - a 3 bedroom, 2-floor townhouse, well furnished and very livable. I went to do some errands in the afternoon - mainly to find a cell phone SIM card and to get some groceries. Going to the Bulk'n'save or whatever it's called was really fun. That's one thing I find strangely fun about visiting other countries - the supermarkets. In the kiwi supermarkets you can buy kiwis and apples without feeling guilty about how long a journey they've taken to get to you.

After doing that I came home to plot how my long weekend would go. Tramping in Arthur's Pass is not possible at this time - surprisingly, the tramp called "Avalanche pass" is too high of an avalanche danger at the moment :(. Another time, for sure; it sounds like a great day hike.

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