5:11am AEST – Brisbane, QLD, Australia
Well, I got here at the airport at 3:30am thinking I’d had to wait another hour for check-in to open. However, to my surprise, it already was open! The check-in process for Virgin Australia was very efficient. Customs didn’t open till another hour but that was a fast experience as well. For some people, international air travel might be daunting but I was lucky to be exposed to air travel at such a young age, so for me, I’m quite used to it. It’s a 3 hour flight from Brisbane to Auckland. I have my iPad ready with movies, and my iPod nano for music. We’re boarding in 10 minutes so I’ll check back when I get to Auckland!
5:42pm – Auckland, New Zealand
Landed in Auckland 15 minutes early, and went through Customs and Immigration with no issue. Riding the Skybus through Auckland’s suburbs, I had the sense of seeing new things but at the same time a feeling of familiarity. The shared heritage and development between Australia and New Zealand is definitely evident. However, one thing I noticed is that American chains have a better footing than their attempts in Australia. One of the things I wanted to try here was Wendy’s. You might be thinking – isn’t that American? Well, yes. New Zealand is home to some American fast food chains that Australia does not have. Carl’s Jr and Dunkin’ Donuts is the other one. First thing I did, after getting a SIM card, was to go straight to Wendy’s. I ordered a large Baconator combo. Well…large is certainly…large!
I’m pretty sure that’s equivalent to super-size in the US. However, I thoroughly enjoyed the meal. I couldn’t finish the sides though because they were too large for me!
My hotel room is awesome. Look at the view! It’s the Bankside Waldorf Apartments on Shortland Street.
Walking through Queen Street in Auckland, I felt right at home. It has a cosmopolitan feel that reminds me of back home in Brisbane. Because of this familiarity, I act more like a local rather than a tourist. I shall explore this city even more tomorrow!
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