Sunday, May 22, 2011

Walkabout (All by Myself)

I wanted to renew my passport as it runs out sometime this year and that means I have to take a trip into Auckland and visit the Australian Consulate and a trip into the city is not something either of us really want to do.
Car parking is a rip off and the place is normally packed with tourists.
I have decided to go it alone. Taking the car would be a friggin nightmare as the traffic can be quite thick and I don't just mean lots of vehicles on the road.
Public Transport over here is not as easy as over in Australia but I did work it out. Now to find a bus stop.

View from near the bus stop!
I caught the bus about 750 metres from our house just round the corner on the main road with a load of drivers who haven't got a clue how to drive or what the road rules are.
I needed to cross the main road so I went to the pedestrian crossing at the traffic lights. There was a lane for turning traffic but there was also the white lines known to most intelligent being as the Zebra crossing. This is the area where pedestrians are suppose to walk and where vehicles drivers HAVE to stop and give way to those that cross.
NOT at this crossing. It seems that the the traffic that came around the corner had drivers who had sight problems and a form of verbal diarrhea judging by the abuse that flowed fluently from their mouths.
Even after surviving that and although the light green man was well lit and the red lights had halted the traffic flow someone felt the need to fly through the intersection.

Safely across the main road and at the bus stop some other members of the public rocked up. A young asian male about 20ish with jet black hair he can do stuff all with, glasses that have lenses that remind me of the bottom of coke bottle and a complete obsession with his iphone. There was of course a terrorist, well I say a terrorist but she may have been ok but she was covered head ta foot with clothes and only her eyes and that jewish nose were visible. My guess she was a student as she had a knapsack full of books however one book I noticed was all about fertilisers. My hope is that she is a keen gardener.

The bus arrives on time and I step aside to allow the lady to get on first. Ya would have thought I had pulled my pants down and waved me private bits at her the way she carried on. Bugga you then, I got on first. The bus driver smiled and shook his head. I moved to the centre of the bus and sat up against the window.

Not far to go?
The journey took about 40 mins and was uneventful. I did notice there were quite a few asians out shopping. Maybe I had come out on Chinese food day or something.
It is interesting to see the changes in surroundings as one gets closer to the city. One gets the feeling that at one time this house or that had stood alone at some point in time but now had been suffocated buy modern times.

Fortunately the bus stops outside of Britomart Station which I was grateful for as there are tens of millions of people who use the station and not just for the transport.
What I do like about the city is everything is within reach of the transport system. My destination was actually just around the corner although I cheated an went through the shopping centre which had a walk way to where I needed to be thus avoiding all the traffic but unfortunately not the people.
I enter the Price Waterhouse Coopers Building PWC for short and I look at the directory searching for the consulate.
View from PWC
Right  it's on level 7.
I head to the lifts and there are about 10 of them with no buttons to push. One opens and some people get out. I get in the door closes and I look to see where the buttons are for floor levels. There are none!
The woman across from me looks me up and down and then looks straight ahead. "OK" I say. "How do I get to level 7?" The woman looks over at me and smiles "Get off at the next floor look for the directory board and press the button with the floor number. It will then show on the screen the lift you need to get into. Lifts have letters above them A,B,C etc" "Thank you very much." I get off at the next stop and finally get to level 7 where I am met by one big I mean big security guard.

Empty the contents of my pockets onto the table. Hold my arms out. Turn my mobile off. then when the man is satisfied I am allowed into the consulate where I take a ticket, wait 10 mins, hand over the paper work pay the required amount and then am bundled out.

Back to the bus stop I have 50 minute wait, so I decide to have a wee look around the waterfront which is like 2 minutes away take a few pics get back on the bus and get back home.

View of waterfront
On the way home the bus fills up with an assortment of people, some of whom don't wash!
Back in my own suburb and now off the bus and walking home I call KB and ask if she wants a burger from the local takeaway.
At home I share my experience and we have a laugh.
Now that was some walkabout how was your day?





Whitesnakes do it better .......... Weekend Walkabout is here
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