Today I slept in a bit. The weather was cloudy and really windy so it took me quite a while to get up and off my butt, but by about noon I set out on my adventure.
The hostel was just outside the city centre so first I walked through the octagon which is Dunedin's downtown. The geographic layout was quite neat. Afterwards I set out east with Baldwin Street in mind. It turned out to be over an hours walk and about halfway there it started to rain but it was just a light shower so I didn't let it bother me.
Eventually I got to Baldwin street which for those of you who don't know is the steepest street in the whole world. After staring at it for a few minutes I decided I better make the trek up otherwise the whole journey would have been a waste. The top didn't have quite as nice of view as I hoped but I imagined taking a slip'n slide down which was quite an entertaining thought. On my walk down there was a locksmith walking up and I greeted him with a smile. He said "I hate working on this street" and we both let out a small chuckle.
On the walk down to Baldwin street I got the city vibe from most of the people I walked by, I'm sure you know the one and it made me realize I don't particularly care for cities. The thing about cities is that everyone is always late or trying to get somewhere asap. So they keep their heads down, almost afraid to say hello or greet a stranger as though it might cost them too much time out of their already ever busy days. It was this combined with the rushing sounds of traffic that made me very thankful when I noticed the botanical gardens on my walk home.
I took the detour and explored the serene pathways. Everything was so wonderfully green. Ducks and other birds flew around and swam through ponds. I think I needed a time out from the city especially after spending the previous two weeks in places no bigger than 30,000. When I was ready I left the gardens and slowly made my way back to the hostel. It had been quite a long afternoon of walking.
When I arrived back at the hostel there was news of a quiz night at a bar so I made a quick supper and off we went. Most of the group was staff and they were all quite easy to chat with. I especially bonded with a Frenchman named Loic. The quiz questions were quite difficult but I got a few for our team so I felt good about my contributions. At one point in the intermission blink 182's song i miss you came on and this drunk guy decided he was going to sing along at the top of his lungs. Now despite where you think this is going he actually did a phenomenal job and it was quite enjoyable! On the walk home Loic and I made plans for tomorrow afternoon and bonded over how stupid this guy from Kansas was haha.
April 27, 2016
So again today started out quite lazy. I decided I felt like starting the day with a movie so I watched " "Remember Me." I had seen it before but it took me a while to appreciate so I'm glad I watched it again. After it finished, Loic and his friend Tim came over and we set out on out adventure. After about an hours walk we reached St Claire Beach. It was absolutely beautiful and yet quite quiet with minimal foot traffic. The sun wasn't really out but the clouds painted a beautiful picture amidst the blues in the sky and the ocean. I even felt the urge to do a few cartwheels on the beach. On the walk back into the city Loic and I had some very interesting chats about the existing social systems in play and more or less debated capitalism vs socialism. It got a little bit heated at times, but it was an extremely entertaining conversation to have.
By six we had headed back into town to catch the Speights brewery tour. Having never been on a brewery tour before I quite enjoyed learning about the process and how Speights became the number one beer in NZ. I even learned that until 2011 when Christchurch had the big earthquake, Speights distributed their beer using tankers like the ones you see carrying petrol. That's A LOT of beer. At the end we were allowed to sample 6 different kinds of their beer. The malt dark beer was my favourite, and it seems my taste in beer is slowly changing towards the darker beers. Fun fact, right before I took the photo I spilled beer all over my pants haha.
Afterwards the three of us headed back to the hostel and played a game of Monopoly to which Loic won quite quickly. It was probably the fastest game of Monopoly I've ever played.
Anyways that's it for Dunedin. Two more days in NZ and then I'm off to Australia! Tomorrow, Christchurch!
-Terrence outRead more