Saturday, February 05, 2005

Hanging out in the Christchurch Airport

I have a few hours to kill here in the airport. Luckily I am about to hang out in the Quantas Club. There is nothing like free food and drinks along with a internet connection to make a wait seem easy.

I had a lot of leftover postcards and stamps from NZ, so expect cards in the next few weeks that don't say much. Everyone got the same letter on the card. I was not in the mood to write out what I already have written on the blog. I had 17 cards to do so it was some what of an assembly line of sorts writing them out.

Back to my rant about the food in New Zealand. I was going to leave this alone but I have to let it out. It sucks, plain and simple. I had 2, count them 2 out of about 40 meals I enjoyed. The first was when I was in Coromandel Town and had dinner with the staff of "The Peppertree" restaurant my friend Jen and her husband Brown own. The next did not come until I got to Queenstown and on the last night there I found a place called "Winnie Bagos" where I had a great thin crust pizza. Other than that the rest was lame. Even the fast food (KFC, Mickey D's, and BK) wasn't good. The ketchup and mayo are somewhat different and give it a strange taste. It took me awhile to figure out why the food is bad and then it occurred to me, this country was settled by the English. The English are not know for there cuisine, think about how many Italian, French, Asian, Greek, Middle Eastern, restaurants you find in America. Sure, you may go to an English style pub, but that is for the beer not the food. When was the last time you said to friends or family, "hey lets go get some British food"? Now I don't want to offend anyone but it's true the Brits think fish and chips are the pinnacle of great food.

So how would I sum up my trip to NZ? I had a great time in many areas I visited and a not so great time in others. If someone asked how they should see the country I would tell them to fly into Auckland, rent a car for 7-8 days. Then drive up to the Northlands and visit the Bay of Islands, crossover to the west coast and see Ninety Mile beach and head south to Auckland via the National Park I drove through. (the name escapes me now). This could be done in 2-3 days, giving you plenty of time to see that area. Next I would send them to the Coromandel peninsula for 2-3 days. Hanging out in Coromandel Town and then head over to Whitianga on the east coast. I would then head south to Rotorua and Taupo for a few days then return to Auckland for a flight to Christchurch and rent a car for 7 days. Spend a few days in Christchurch and head south to Queenstown. Mount Cook would be a good side trip on the way to Queenstown. Go through Wanaka to get to Queenstown. Then spend the rest of your time in Queenstown. It was by far the place I would comeback too in a heartbeat. There is a ton of different things to do in the town. Then fly home. Wellington and the trip over the ferry was nice but can be missed. Also the west coast of the south island was fairly boring, the same scenery over and over, Tasmen sea to your right and mountains to your left for hours on end. When you first see it, it's nice but after three hours it gets tiresome.

The big question about any place you go is would you come back? Yes I would, for Coromandel and Queenstown only. The rest I have seen. Now I don't want people to think I didn't enjoy the other areas I visited but didn't mention, it's just they weren't all that special.

So, onto Australia for the next 8-12 days. I am sure of the following. Four days in Cairns then a flight to Sydney for two days. This is all that I have planned for now. I may stay an extra day in Sydney then go to Adelaide for 2-3 day then onto Singapore. I have ruled out Italy but I may have told you that already. I want to go to Italy with someone with me. Any guesses on that person is? Hey it could be you!

All right, time to go enjoy more free food and drink. I will catch up with you in a few days as I will be arriving late into Cairns tonight and will go right to sleep when I get in.

No comments: