Monday, June 17, 2013

Road trip at NZ (part 3)

After a night's rest at the airport campervan park, we were finally ready to hit the road. Our first destination is to the south of Auckland. Through the NZ Native Park membership, we have a arranged for a night stay at a farm. Problem is we woke up really late in the morning, by the time we have had our breakfast it was already 10am, then I have to do my sewer service duty to empty the camper's black water tank which was almost full form all the night calls ( we were too lazy to walk to the common toilet in the middle of the night ) and also to drain the grey water tank. That took another 30 minutes. I am beginning to learn that campervan trip requires certain advanced time planning and chores like these need to be taken into consideration.

Just 10Km out of Auckland, I was stopped by a police road block! This is not so different from home is it? Anyway, the police officer was more interested in testing for drunk drivers, in the morning! I guess some locals here starts their drinking early. He was waving a breathalyzer as he gestured me to stop. He took one look at me and decided that testing me would be a waste of time, he put away the instrument and asked for my driving license instead, it was good thing that I have an international driving permit (the alternative is to get a official translated document on our Malaysian license). The officer looked happy with it and said "Welcome to New Zealand sir and have a great holiday!". No worry officer, I surely will.

Scenes like this is common theme around Auckland, the city is mostly surrounded by water.

We stopped by a historical site. According to the sign board the site was a stronghold during the Maori War. I later read up about the history of the Maori War (also known as New Zealand war) found it to be a fascinating tale of British colonial land grab, inter Maori tribal rivalries and their attempt to stem British expansion. This particular place used to house a British garrison, ironically it was named after a Maori officer who served in the Bristish Colonial army.

I have made it so far without any incidents!

The site of redoubt was on a knoll, the highest point in the area that provide a commanding view of Waikato river and area surrounding it.
Today, the surrounding area is a beautiful little township.


maggieb said...

I hope you are enjoying my country, however, with the recent spate of awful weather, I have to wonder.

It would be interesting to hear just what impact wind, rain and polar blasts have had, and how you coped while living in the campervan.

Personally, I think I would have headed for the nearest motel, preferably in Rotorua with its hot sulphur baths.

TJ Chang said...

We survived a couple of nights with temperature dipping a few Celsius below zero. It was pretty cold, the gas heater worked well but it only have one outlet vent, so only one part the camper was warm. Fortunately the duvets provided by the campervan rental company were excellent, they really kept us warm. Waking up in the middle of the night to visit the dunny is a different matter!