Where am I?

When it Rains, it Pours

May 11, 2006 at 11:28 PM | categories: New Zealand | View Comments

The rain doesn't stop through Cambridge, nor in Oxford. Yes, I'm still in New Zealand.

I reach Taupo around lunch time, but the rain is still bucketing down. The storm drains remind me of Foster City, but these are more stylish. taupo storm drain

Taupo sounds like Tahoe, and that's no accident. They're both mountain lakes, but Taupo is the result of a gargantuan volcanic explosion, not so terribly long ago. So it's like Crater Lake in Oregon, only much bigger. From the air, it looks like africa. lake taupo in the rain

After a tolerable pinot noir and a bite of fresh fish, I decide that the weather might be better in Napier. So I continue on the highway, south-east. There are some semis sharing the road, so I pull off frequently to take pictures. There's a pretty little waterfall coming down from the lake. You don't think it's so little? Visit Iguazu.


Driving on, the sun comes out. I stop to take pictures of sheep, grapes, and bait. Look, I've never seen a BP station selling bait before. The girl behind the counter seems pretty insecure about: I half-expect her to try to confiscate the camera. sunlit distance hill sheep grapes bp bait

I arrive in Napier as the sun sets.

napier sunset

Have I mentioned why I'm in Napier? Besides the restraining order, barring me from Wellington? No? I guess you'll have to wait until tomorrow. It's on Hawke's Bay, which looks quite a bit like Monterey to me, but that isn't the reason. I check into the Bella Vista motel: it's a local chain. The price is a new high at NZ$110, but that's still cheap for the US, and it comes with internet access. Ah, this is why I brought the Airport Express: there's nothing like wifi in a tiny motel room. So I check email and post, before going out for a beer. hawkes bay wifi napier at night Napier seems to be deserted tonight, but there are rednecks - excuse me - fishermen at the Thirsty Dog (no pictures). On the way there, a love-lorn local accosts me to ask "why do they do it?". This is deep philosophy: there are, perhaps, as many answers as there are people. I tell him that, and advise another beer.

I get a pizza from a local chain called Hell, and an illegal bottle of Argentinian Malbec. This is possibly the worst meal I've had in New Zealand, but it's still pretty good. And if I'm bored, there's always tango. No, really. hell's angels milango

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