Sunday, May 21, 2006

Still in Auckland

As the title says, I have not left the city yet. No luck on the job front, so I'm just killing time here until something comes up. The program I'm here with has a job recruiter who is pretty much doing all the work for me. This is great in that I don't have to do anything, but also nerve-wracking because it means that I am just sitting around waiting and wondering if there's something else I could be doing.

But because I don't have any job hunting work to do, I have been free to sightsee around the city. Auckland's got a fair amount to see and do, and this has been greatly enhanced by the fact that backpacker tour companies here run free "orientation" tours of the city. Considering that I don't have a car and the city is extremely spread out (supposedly the fourth biggest city in the world in terms of urban sprawl), this has been an awesome way to get around. Here is a small sampling of some of the things I've seen (as you can see, the blog is finally being cooperative with pictures ). Hopefully the pics will give you an idea of why I think it's so beautiful here.

Here is a beach in Devonport, the richest suburb of Auckland. With views like this, no wonder it's so expensive.

View of the Auckland city skyline from the top of Mt. Victoria, one of Auckland's 50 volcanoes. Supposedly they're all dormant. Let's hope so.

However, this is Rangitoto Island, which was formed only 600 years ago when an underwater volcano errupted in the middle of the harbour. Geologists expect that another erruption like this will happen sometime in the next 100 or so years. Maybe it's time to get out of this city.
And since we're on the topic of volcanoes, here is the crater of Mt. Eden, the biggest volcano in Auckland. According to the tour guide, some university students played a great prank by throwing some tires down in the crater and lighting them on fire in the middle of the night, so when everyone woke up in the morning there was smoke coming from the volcano. However, the truth behind this story is a little suspect considering that the tour guide said it happened seven years ago, yet when I was here nine years ago our tour guide told us the exact same story. True or not, it's still a good story.
And here is some culture for you. At the Auckland museum they have a Maori (the indigenous people) marae (meeting house) that you can walk inside. I think Maori artwork is some of the most beautiful I've ever seen.

If Auckland is considered boring, then I can't wait to get out to the rest of the country.
If anyone is interested in sending me any mail (and I know you are), you can send it to the following address. It will get forwarded to me wherever I am in New Zealand:
c/o IEP
PO Box 1786
Shortland Street
New Zealand


Wyatt said...

Where are the cows in the volcano? I seem to remember them. Looks awesome, and as stated before, I am jealous. Have fun.

Geetha said...

Yeah, I remember there being cows on the volcano too, but there weren't any this time. I should have asked what happened to them.