Tuesday 4 Jan 2011 - Friday 7 Jan 2011 25 °C
Okay, so I'm here in NZ, staying at a hostel (which is actually really nice) and searching for a place to stay. All the apartments in the city center are small and cramped and messy... and all the houses are nice but too far away. So far it's kinda depressing. I'm lonely and busy stressing over a place to live. I can't seem to enjoy myself. Well, that's not true -- if I've learnt anything from being depressed, it's how to get myself out of it. Like getting a Dirty Chai and letting the caffeine work it's magic, or listening to a really good song while I'm walking, or quickstepping down the sidewalk and laughing at the people who look at me like I'm crazy. Or skipping. Or humming some random tune I make up on the spot. Haha, people must think I'm insane. :P I'm finding my ways to stay out of "it".
I discovered the Venti Iced Dirty Chai. How cool is that?!?! Haha, it's keeping me alive right now. Except that ordering it involves a lot of work. Usually I have to say "venti iced chai latte with two shots of espresso" and then the barista looks at me like I'm crazy and charges me an outrageous amount of money. I miss Java Jive, where a dirty chai is actually on their menu and therefore only costs 4.50 instead of 7.50!
(Haha, the last two photos above are a little square I found with a GIANT countdown clock for the Rugby World Cup 2011. :P Kiwis love their rugby.)
Lol, now that's out of my system, I guess I'll actually write about Auckland.
First Impressions: AWESEOM! (haha, and no, that's not a typo :P ... inside jk) It's beautiful. Kiwis like their coffee so there is a good coffee shop every block, and an internet cafe or two (mostly for gaming, like WOW). Every block is like a multistory labyrinth of shops and courtyards and secret benches and outdoor pubs to be discovered. It's great. Exploring here is sooooo much fun. There's a lot of oriental shops and turkish food (ie. "kebabs"). Sky City Tower is very cool. I need to go up it. It's something like 330m high and is the tallest structure in the southern hemisphere... they offer sky-jumps and sky-walks for the daring ones. But I think I'd rather jump off a cliff instead of a building for my first time. As my guide book says, it "looks like a giant hypodermic giving a fix to the heavens." Haha, I love this guide book. I'm not sure if mom read it before she bought it for me for Christmas, but it's really quirky. All sorts of witty smart-ass comments. It's like my own personal Hitchhikers Guide to New Zealand. :P
Second Impressions: Tiring. It's hot, humid, and hilly. (ahahaha alliteration) Haha I think this blog keeps me entertained more than it will anyone who chooses to read it. Lol. I've also found internet here is really expensive. Today I found a homeless person who, instead of just sitting there looking pitiful and asking for change, he was drawing a beautiful pen and ink design. It was amazing. He was the first homeless person I really admired. He had talent and was doing whatever he could for the money. It was inspiring.
Yesterday I did something I shouldn't have... I checked out the campus. Like talked to the registrar and looked at how easy it would be to finish my studies here. I know I know. I wouldn't even have checked if Mom and Chris didn't keep mentioning it!!!! Jeez. Anyways, the campus is the most beautiful place I've ever been. It has an architecturally stunning Clock Tower, and a big green park with huge trees right beside it. The engineering building is fantastic. Especially compared to NREF (yuck!) It's made of glass and steel, very modern, but almost all windows so from the inside, you feel like you're outside (almost). The common area has comfy benches and nice places to sit and study and LOTS of natural light coming in. (Stupid NREF, all concrete and crap... no wonder I get depressed there!) But the best part was the Engineering Resource Library. It's right at the front of the building so an entire wall is window. Highlights: A shelf with bins full of K'nex and Zoom (another building set kinda like K'nex)! Anyone can just go and build things whenever they want. And if you don't want to take it apart, you can set it on the windowsill! It's amazing! Also, there's a group of computer specifically reserved for playing Civilization IV, Sim City societies, SimCity, or Imperium Romanum!!!!!!!!!!!!! OMG, I'm in love. A school that actually recognizes Civ4 as a learning tool for Civil Engineers! TAKE THAT MOM! lol. :P
IMPORTANT UPDATE: I FOUND A PLACE TO LIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!