I really should go to bed, so I probably won’t finish this post all tonight. I leave for Europe in a few weeks, and I don’t want to get in the habit of staying up late and sleeping in. It will make the time adjustment that more difficult. Besides, I really want to pay attention to the domestic flight from Queenstown to Auckland. First off the airport is tiny. And they have no gathering places (shops, food, ect) once you go through security. I think they only have like 5 domestic gates or something. When I walked through security I didn’t have to take off my shoes or jacket. I didn’t have to take out my liquids. I didn’t have to walk through an x-ray machine. Just your typical metal detector. It took maybe 2 minutes. And then I had plenty of time to sit and wait. They didn’t even check to see if I had a boarding pass. They boarded the plane about 10 minuets prior to take off. She did check my boarding pass then, but not my id. Strange. I’m too used to traveling in America I suppose. The flight was cake. Air New Zealand is awesome. They give you free movies and tv shows on all their flights. Plus snacks and drinks. Getting to my hostel from the Auckland airport was cake. I took a shower and decided to relax and walk around the city one last time. I did a bit more shopping, got some food and called it. The weird thing was I had been on the South Island for over a month, and it wouldn’t get dark there til 9:30 easy. It was still twilight at 10pm. So when I left the hostel for food at 8, I thought I have plenty of daylight left. It was dark. It was bizarre. I slept like a baby that night. No snorers. No late night party goers. It was nice. In case you are wondering I did go to bed. This is now day two of me writing this blog. I slept in a little later than I would of like, but its a work in progress. It was officially my last day in NZ. My last hours. I did finally hear from my kiwi friend Matt, and he said he could give me a ride to the airport. I took my shower, packed my things, and then dropped off my bag at the luggage storage area. I finished the rest of my hot chocolate, and what leftovers I had. Then I ventured into town one last time. I did a little bit more shopping, and found a nice bench by the harbor that I sat in to soak up some sun and read my book. I was melting, and was wearing shorts and a t-shirt. I wanted to savor this moment because I knew what it wouldn’t be like this back home. Or in Europe. I met my friend at a burger joint. We still had some time to kill and went to a driving range near the airport. I had never hit a golf ball before. It was quite interesting. I shared with him some of my stories from my journey and told him he lives in a lovely country. I mean an awful country; I don’t know how he lives there. (I say this in hopes New Zealand won’t become over crowded with tourists 🙂 We went to the airport and that was it. I was heading home. On the airplane, I was fortunate enough to sit next to a kiwi boy, so I could feel close to NZ for a bit longer. He was headed to Germany to meet some friends,and then they were headed to Northern Finland and the Arctic Circle. Brrrrr is what I was thinking. He will be traveling home from Europe just about as I am leaving for it. I slept much better on the plane ride home then I did coming. I was landing in SFO ( San Francisco) on December the 23rd. We had to wait almost 45 minutes to taxi into a gate (it was wonderful having service on my iPhone again). Then I spent about 2 to 2.5 hours in line at customs, and then it took us like 3.5-4+ hours to drive home. It was like 7 hours in total that I finally made it home after landing. It was a long day. Since I was having a lot of family over for the holiday, when I walked in the door I was greeted with a large welcoming commitee. It was cool and overwhelming all at the same time. Well that concludes the basics about my trip to New Zealand. I have some other thoughts, like how much I missed my skinny jeans, and how I will never leave home without them again, but that is for another time. Until next time. Peace. Keelie.
The Skytower in Auckland was lit up Christmas colors.