I just heard that New Zealander’s based in Auckland experience some of the top rated quality of life in the world! Oh yah.. no wonder I love this place so much. (Don’t kid yourself though, Canada always ranks near the top too!) NZ held 3rd spot on the Mercer 2011 Quality of Life Survey for the 4th straight year and taking the highest ranking in the Asian Pacific region… take that Australia. The researches considered 39 pieces of criteria including economic environment, health, education, transport, housing, personal freedom and recreational factors like restaurants, sports facilities and cinemas. Out of 221 cities Auckland took third place… suck that Wellington! If you don’t know there is a bit of competition Wellington and Auckland… not really surprised to hear this as NZ has a pretty chill lifestyle. If you don’t believe, come down and give it go!
Posts tagged canadians in auckland
So this week I was too head down to Wellington to attend a conference put on by Tourism New Zealand. I heard about this conference last minute so I registered pretty late in the game. By doing so I unfortunately I booked a flight on Jet Star, going against a promis I made to myself to never book on that airline, as Ive always had shit experinces. Looking at flight costs Jet Star was a couple hundred dollars cheaper compared to Air New Zealand, so ill save the company some money and take the cheap flight. Turns out that cheap flight would cost me more in time and money!
The conference started on Thursday at 9am, meaning it was going to be an early morning. I was up at 5am to catch the bus at 5:30am, which would have gotten me to the airport at 6:10am. All airlines will ask you to arrive at least a ½ hour early before your domestic flight. This is what I had planned on, but the the airbus running 5 mins late I arrived at the airport at 6:15am. I really didnt think much of it as it was 5 mins and there was still plenty of time to board. WRONG! I guess Jet Star closes the gates exactly 30 mins priror too departure. Being that I was only 25 minutes early to my flight I was denied to boarding. BRUTAL! I didnt have any luggage to check – I told them that, but they said they had already printed the passanger list. I guess they limited ink and paper, so reprinting was out of the question. WTF! Customer serivice doesnt live at Jet Star. I had to pay $90 and catch a flight at 10:30am making me late for the start of the conference.
I finally get into Wellington and hit up the conference, which is great by the way. Day one went off without a hitch, well other than not catching my flight. Day two was just as good. Learnt lots of useful and interesting things and the day flew by. I catch my shuttle to the airport for my 7:25pm flight. This time I am a good hour early – not missing this flight. Little did I know…
Things are ticking a long like they should. I grab a bite to eat, have a beer, read some of my book and then proceed through security. No problems.. so far. Get on plane, buckle up and we start to make the move to take off and then all of a sudden the pilot comes on and tells us there is a problem and that he will have to park the plane and have one of the engineers come on and take a look at the problem. Ok, a little hickup and we will be off soon. WRONG!
After sitting on the plane for an hour we were asked to get off the plane and sit in the departure lounge. 5 hours later we are still sitting in the lounge waiting for some information – any infomration, but no we are being kept in the dark. We ask the flight attendants what is going on and they give the same old line, ‘we dont know anytthing, but as soon as we do we will let you know.’ There is another Jet Star plane sitting at the next gate and someone ask, ‘cant we just use that one?’ to which they reply ‘sorry, that plane is not working as well.’ My confidence in the Jet Star fleet of planes is at an all time low. Do I even want to get on one of these fucking planes?
All this time Im just rolling with it, what else can you do eh! So im reading, listening to music and just waiting for info. Then I see all of the staff come off the plane, bags in hand and head the opposite way of the passangers. They didnt even bother coming to tell us that the flight had been cancelled. WTF!
As soon as I saw them come off the plane I new it was time to book it to the Jet Star checkin desk to rebook and see where they were going to put me up for the night. The line was long – I pretty much said fuck it and walked to the front of the line and asked what the deal was. I was then rebooked for another Jet Star flight to Auckland the next day at 3:35pm ahha. So there goes my weekend. They were putting us up at a hotel and would shuttle us back and forth. I arrived at the hotel at about midnight and checked into my room. I then called Michelle asked her too book me a flight home with Air New Zealand called Jet Star and refunded my return flight.
Jet Star is just a comedy of errors. In the end it would have been cheaper just too book that flight with Air New Zealand even though the initial cost was a couple hundred more. My only advice is dont book with Jet Star if you want to arrive at your desintation on time. Jet Star definitely lives up to their nickname.. Shit Star. If for some reason Jet Star ever reads this post because you care about your PR and oline profile I just want them to know – YOU SUCK MONKEY BALLS!
This is a new anti-drink driving commercial that NZTA has put out! It is GREAT!
Yesterday Michelle and I went to see Last Paradise. This doco was forty-five years in the making and looks at the history of Kiwi adventure sport. It starts with the focus on adventure sport in New Zealand but has a definite underlying ecological message that the places we consider paradise are now in peril. It’s a great film, that I would highly recommend to anyone.
Here is the highlights for the RWC 2011 Opening Ceremony. It was pretty impressive to say the least!
This past Friday was the opening of the Rugby World Cup and it was EPIC! The Auckland City Council had contacted all of the local business to recommend that they let staff off at 3pm and luckily my employer agreed! From the get go in the morning there was a buzz and excitement in the city. Everyone was rocking black and white in support of the All Blacks. To be honest it had to be one of the most unproductive days in New Zealand history. I think everyone was just waiting to start the party!
At 3pm we had a couple beers in the office and then it was off to Base to have some drinks on there balcony bar. The streets were just getting busier and busier by the minute. I didnt even bother to try and get into Party Central or even hit up the Queens Warf as it was already full – I could see that it was backed up at 2:30pm with people waiting to enter, so I wasn’t going to go fight those crowds. I was happy to be at a bar watching it with a group of Rugby mad travellers from all over the world! With the beers flowing we watched a fleet of Waka’s arrive into the harbour, a mass haka, live music from Dave Dobin and the Finn Brothers. After a couple beers at Base we shifted down the road to the Bluestone Room that was packed full with partygoers. Here it was jug after jug of beer with a bunch of rugby fanatics from France at our table.
There was a massive fireworks show at 8pm. Six thousand explosive shells wereill be let off from four floating barges in the harbour, the SkyTower and four buildings in the CBD. EPIC! The streets were packed with people supporting their team and the party was in full motion. People were on top of bus shelters dancing, in the streets, up light poles and on any space available. The fireworks lasted 12 mins and it was mesmerizing!
With the fireworks done it was back to the bar to watch the opening ceremonies before the game. The opening ceremonies included mix of Maori tradition and rugby heritage. It was amazing too! Well-done New Zealand! Soon enough the game was on and the Rugby World Cup had begun. The All Blacks and the Tongan’s each did there haka.. awesome! Then the All Blacks easily beat the Tonga side, but it was a fun game to watch and the atmosphere was electric.
On the walk home from the pub the CBD (central business district) was packed with people. It was estimated that 200,000 people were downtown and the Queens Warf had an additional 12,000 people. That is a lot of partygoers! For the most part there wasn’t a lot of trouble. Of course there were a couple fights, but with that many (intoxicated) people in one spot it is bound to happen. In the end the police arrested 63 people. Overall, it was an EPIC event! New Zealand should be proud as they represented very well. The tournament runs for 6 weeks, so this is just the beginning. When the All Blacks win, it will be pandemonium!
Work has been great! I just got back from a trip down to Wellington and Christchurch. Any time you get out of the office is nice.Wellingtonwas pretty average, grey, windy and cold – the usual for Welly.Christchurchthough was bluebird skies, sunny and fairly warm. The flight down was impressive and looking back I wish I had my camera. The mountains were stunning. After the dumping of snow we had earlier in the month they are all covered and looking amazing. The best I’ve ever seen them. Super scenic.
September is looking good for work travel too! I’ve got heaps on the go and spring starts, so no complaints here. I’m off , to Wellington and Christchurch again. I’m loving it! Just found out that I will be heading to Queenstown mid September, so I have tacked a couple days on that trip to do some riding!
I maybe getting to GoldenBayfor some back country riding near the end of the month.. fingers crossed! It all depends on timing and funds!
The Rugby World Cup is only a week or so away and I’ve just scored some tickets too the Canada Vs Tonga game.Ill be going with another Canadian and a couple of Kiwis. STOKED!!! Life is good.
Ive been living in Auckland for over a year now and I just can’t understand why everyone hates on this city? If you are from Auckland and you travel anywhere else in New Zealand you will hear this familiar term ‘JAFA,’ which means ‘Just Another Fucking Aucklander.’ I’ve met people from Auckland who cringe when asked where they are from because of the response they will get from other kiwis. In one case a taxi cab driver pulled over and tossed his Aucklander passengers out of his cab because they live in Auckland! How could someone make such a rush judgment about a person just because they live in a certain part of the country.
In any other country Auckland would be the ideal holidaying city. It has a temperate climate, plenty of nice beaches, cool neighborhoods, 2 harbors and enough going on that you won’t be bored out of your skull. I’ve met plenty of kiwis from outside of Auckland that feel the people living here are not friendly – I haven’t experienced that. Auckland is a small-big city with a very friendly feel. If you were to give the city a chance you will most likely enjoy yourself here. I’m not saying that backpackers should base themselves here, but to trash it and really only spend a couple days in the city is not giving it a fair go. Recently I met one backpacker who hated on the city, but now calls it home and has realized that it not such a bad place after living here for a while. Don’t get me wrong, Auckland isn’t for everyone but to say it is not a good place to live is totally untrue.
When I lived in Toronto it was the same thing with the rest of Canada. Everyone hates Toronto. The crime, the pollution, to busy, to much traffic, rude people.. ive heard it all and to be honest I was hater until I lived there. Once I gave it a chance it really grew on me. When I first thought of moving to NZ I didn’t really think I would be based out of Auckland, but when I scored a great job here why wouldn’t I give it a shot. I don’t regret it at all.
I think it all comes down to hating the ‘big guy.’ The UK hates London, Canada hates Toronto, Australia hates Sydney, everyone hates America and I could go on. Hating really doesn’t do anyone any good. So if everyone could just understand that the ‘big city’ isn’t for everyone and that really in the scheme of things you shouldn’t knock a place until you’ve actually lived there the world would be a happier place.
Auckland’s grimey waterfront has now had a major facelift just in time for the 2011 World Cup of Rugby! They built a new spring bridge to connect downtown Auckland to the Wynward Quater where all the cool new attractions can be found. The once industrial waterfront is now filled with tourist friendly restaurants, bars, cafes, art displays, kids play area, walkways and even a 1920′s red tram which loops the around the waterfront showing off all the new attractions. There is even a piano under a veranda that is free to use.
This past weekend over 50,000 people visited the newly $120 million renovated water front area and 4000 of them qued to ride the tram loop. It will be a huge pull during the World Cup and a great area to visit while in Auckland.
It’s back to the grind for me! My month long vacation has come to an end and I am now back in New Zealand. My trip home was amazing. It was great to be able to catch up with my friends and family. My month consisted of visiting friends in my home town, a couple trips to Toronto to visit old co-workers, hanging out with my young niece and nephew, helping my brother move into his new house, and two weeks of bliss at the cottage. To be honest I think I forgot how beautiful Canada was. Maybe I took it for granted, but going home with fresh eyes made me realize how lucky I am to be able to live in Canada. I know I rave about how stunning and amazing New Zealand is, but Canada is right there beside New Zealand.
Im now working on obtaining residency in New Zealand and hopefully it will be a smoother process than obtaining my second work visa for New Zealand. I love being in New Zealand. It just feels like a second home. Flying into Auckland felt great, it just felt right. Don’t know why, but it did. I do think I will move back to Canada one day, but for now New Zealand is home and I feel lucky to be able to call it that.
So what is in the forecast for me? Of course lots and lots of riding! Taking a month of the bike has let my shoulder fully recover – sweet! I keep thinking to myself I should have a more balanced life, not just riding in all of my sparetime. This is easy for me to say and hard for me to do. All I want to do is ride on the weekends/evenings, but I am going to try and make a effort to mix it up. Meh.. we will see, but odds are Ill be riding just as much or more a year from now. Who am I kidding I live to ride and ride to live.