Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The tourist

With Papy Jovial back in the water, waiting to be remasted, it was time to start playing tourist.
Bertrand having lent me his car, I took off from Whangarei on Sunday late morning, relying on my GPS to get to Nigel's house in Auckland. Along the way, I stopped to pay the 2 dollar toll at a booth at the entrance of the toll road, with quite a few people standing in line to do the same. After I had paid, I went back to the car and found the GPS off. I tried to switch it back on, but had no success. I was in for a few minutes of panic, since I had relied 100 % on the GPS to find my w
ay to Nigel's place, having no maps, and Nigel being still in Whangarei. Anyway, I drove on, thinking that I would find a way to get there once in Auckland. Meanwhile I started fumbling with the device and e
ventually removed the batteries and reconnected to the car cigarette lighter, and it worked ! Big relief !
Once at Nigel's, I explored Newmarket with a few eating places and shops, all open on a Sunday afte
On Monday, I w
ent to the harbour, and took my computer there to regain access at the C-Map for the US and the Bahamas (I intend to come back), and to have the map for Australia installed. Once back at Nigel's, I played potatoe couch and watched TV, something I had not done since I left Virginia back in May last year.
Tuesday morning, I got up early, and went to the airport to meet Anne and drive her back to Nigel's. Then, after she had time to settle down a little, we drove down to town to visit the downtown a little and then do a one and a half hour cruise on a sailboat in the Bay of Auckland. I parked the car in one of the "pay and display" spots, and coming back, I found a $200 dollar ticket because the registration of the car had expired on Jan 6 and I had not noticed it.
It took a little bit of scrambling to renew the registration, since I am not the owner of the car and I don't know Bertrand licence's number, but eventually was able to renew it for three months. As for the fine, I requested on line for it to be waived and I have to wait for the answer of the auckland city authority to reply.
On Wednesday, Nigel took us on a tour in town and on the west coast, after what we had an early dinner at a top of the range restaurant named "french cafe" with nothing french about it except the name, but serving top notch food.
Thursday, we packed in the Auckland Memorial War museum and a cultural Maori show, after which we went to "Sheep World" learn how to guide sheeps with dogs and how to sort them out and shear them for $1.8 per sheep !
Then, back to Nigel's, this time for a home cooked dinner with Nigel and Joanna, and a chance to watch on TV Serena Williams play at the Australian open.
Tomorrow, we fly out to Queenstown for more touring .

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