Amy Tries Again


Things I Do Not Like (particularly irrational edition): New Zealand
October 18, 2010, 10:04 AM
Filed under: Things I Do Not Like

Firstly:  I am sorry.  The views expressed in this rant are really quite foolish.  This particular Thing I Do Not Like has been dormant for some time, and just dragging it into the sunlight has made me realise how stubborn I’ve been.  Ladies and gentlemen:  for some years, I have been profoundly unimpressed by New Zealand.

Yeah, whatever guys.

As a child, I blithely wrote off the whole of Australia as VERY BORING.  The prejudice was such that a little extra spilt over to our esteemed neighbour: the country you visit when you don’t feel like going overseas.  I basically thought of New Zealand as a bad cover version of Australia.  Same language.  Similar accent.  Same obsession with pavlovas and lamingtons.  Hobbits.  (My hatred of anything Tolkien is Another Kettle Of Fish.)

Now, all of this, I thought, I would be able to tolerate, had New Zealand had the decency to actually be part of Australia.  It could have redeemed itself – almost – by being another sort of Tasmania.  It was the high-faulutin’ status it had as OVERSEAS that irked me so.  It seemed like the cheat’s option.  I merrily glossed over the fact that it was, in fact, ANOTHER COUNTRY, and grimaced pettily at it for a decade or so.

BOOORING

Ah, New Zealand.  It’s the Australia of New Zealand.

I feel that I should point out that I have never actually been to New Zealand.  For years, I’ve written it off as the equivalent of going to Adelaide, but with more pineapple lumps.  I know this is wrong.  I know this is foolish.  I just hadn’t actually re-assessed this belief for at least 10 years.

Long story short: obsessively looking at bargain flights (my favourite game is one of my own device named ‘Cheapest Possible Return Flights To London And You Can Put Me In The Cargo Hold If You Like’, and my current high – well, low – score is $800!  $800!!!), I breezed past the usual awful Bali offers (more bile and hatred, this time tangled up with I AM A TRAVELLER NOT A TOURIST) and sighed at how no airline wanted to take me to Slovenia for $300 return.  Business class.

Suddenly, something shifted in my brain.  Hang on a sec.  I COULD GO TO NEW ZEALAND AND IT COULD BE FUN.

Amy? Present? No? Oh.

So.  I will.  I am going to New Zealand.  I am going to go on a train from Auckland to Wellington, and it is going to be charming.  I am going to hike merrily up a hill.  I am not going to go bungee jumping.

Any recommendations?

UPDATE:  I went to New Zealand.

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7 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Go bungee jumping.

Comment by Dave

No.

Comment by Amy

Amy. Amy. Amy…you poor misguided soul, you.
(yeah, I’m from New Zealand, did you guess?)
Leaving aside your unflattering, unfair, and lets face it, unfounded preconceptions for the time being, let me just suggest that, if done right, NZ may just blow you away.
Some might say its boring – clean, green, relatively unpopulated and all that ; others would say those are just the attributes that make for the perfect holiday destination, one where you can do as little or as much as you want while sampling some of the very best sights, tastes and experiences to be found most anywhere.
But!! Seriously!! Forget Auckland to Wellington. It’ll be more boring than Brisbane! Its all in the SOUTH Island my friend – fly into Queenstown or Christchurch, rent a car and just drive – everythings close by, the roads are awesome and you’ll see so much more : Milford Sound, Mt Cook, the lakes and glaciers – I could go on… if you really want a train ride, do the Alpine Express over the southern Alps, but you can drive it just as well.
Let me know if you want to hear more…
Oh, and you didn’t really bag TOLKIEN, did you ??!!
🙂 Marc

Comment by drej08

NZ is fun! Go to the thermal springs at Rotorua (bring a peg), and be there in time for the guy to chuck a piece of soap in the geyser and make it shoot. In Welly, go to Te Papa(?) (the museum by the water). Take a day tour round Welly and admire how people willingly live up cliff faces that can only be accessed on little lift thingies. And try L&P and Belgian slice (though skip the lolly cake – it’s gross).

Comment by Cakelaw

You mock Ashley’s unfounded hatred of bowie, yet you blithely rag on Tolkien on the very same blog? For shame, madam! FOR SHAME!

Comment by Brendan

Sadly, I can’t drive, and neither can Significant Other (I know, I know. We like to pretend we’re eco-warriors, but really we’re just lazy). Am hell-bent on taking a train! Hoping to go early next year, so am feverishly researching. I love planning travel. Thanks for your suggestions, guys – have been googling, and it looks amazing.

As for Tolkein…well, stay tuned.

Comment by Amy

[…] was once a foolish individual.  I held prejudiced views.  I thought…well, this is what I thought.  For those who don’t have the energy to click on a link, here’s the condensed […]

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