Across Continents

Ken's Blog

Wellington bound

July 22nd, 2011

Wellington bound from Ken Roberts on Vimeo.

Ken returns to Wellington on the ferry linking North and South Islands.

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Karori sunrise

July 1st, 2011

Sunrise - two

Today’s Kiwese word: summer. Cook at a constant temperature, below boiling point

Tropical island? Actually no. Karori. A suburb of Wellington. New Zealand’s Capital. Tucked away at the bottom end of the North Island. Shows it doesn’t always rain here. Even in winter.

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Coffee Capital

June 30th, 2011

eiscoff

Today’s Kiwese word or phrase: "Weir Eagles Deer". Awesome war film

I offered them my table. There were plenty more. No one else in the small waterfront cafe. Despite the intoxicating aromas. Freshly ground coffee. Hot muffins. They were an elderly couple. They’d not asked to sit where I’d chosen. But I just knew they wanted to. It mattered to them. It was their table. Couldn’t begrudge them that. I’d be old one day.

Amy, one of my hosts in Wellington, had been quite firm on this point. Cafe culture was firmly part of the Capital’s landscape. And its coffee the finest in country. Couldn’t quite remember if I’d mentioned beverages had been something of a theme running through the blog. It probably didn’t matter. I’d already demonstrated a perchance for long blacks.

So I’d found myself in Kaffee Eis. Explaining to the staff it’d come highly recommended. By a local. Not disappointed. Either by the coffee. Or the music playing in the background. Dire Straits. Brothers-in-Arms album. Mid-eighties I thought. I was really beginning to like New Zealand.

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Ketching fush

June 30th, 2011

Fishcombo

Today’s Kiwese word: nit. Used to ketch fush

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Around Wellington

June 30th, 2011

Wellington. Small pedestrian precinct. Sat on a bench. Little overcast. Chill wind. Flask of tea. Tucking into my packed lunch. I’d spent the morning exploring New Zealand’s Capital. Visiting the information centre. Starting to shape my plans for the next few weeks. Dropped off earlier at the cable car on the hill behind. Fine vantage point.

Cable car

Opposite sat a chap in shorts. Heavy fleece top. Another, nearby, similar. Down jacket. Hardy bunch. Lunch time joggers. Mostly office workers I thought. All shapes and sizes. Surprising number of them. Small groups. Individuals. One daring enough to plunge into the cold waters of the harbour. Quick then to sprint off. I’d winced as I’d watch him go in.

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A dog called Jasper

June 29th, 2011

His name was Jasper. I knew because I’d asked his handler. The pair had approached each and every passenger. Waiting by the baggage carousel. The dog seemed disinterested. I was pleased.

With Emma, my trusty steed, safely parked up in Sydney, I’d decided to spend a few weeks in New Zealand. Visiting friends. Exploring. Alas, too expensive to bring the bike over. Flying into the Capital, Wellington. Southern tip of the North Island. The other one’s South Island.

Visa

Immigration. Six month visa. Of sorts. Just a quick stamp in the passport. Customs. Biosecurity. Terribly friendly. Terribly. I’d ticked a few boxes on my Declaration Card. In some countries that’d get you a full body cavity search. No lubricant. Here the worst you’d probably get is a soggy biscuit with your cup of tea. And they’d be very apologetic about it.

Struggled to find the very items I’d declared. Becoming increasingly concerned I’d forgotten to pack them. Medication mostly. Said so to the inspecting officer. We chatted for a while whilst I rummaged around in my bag. Weather mostly. Already knew I was going to like it here.

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