So Auckland has dillas and beer…thats about it

I arrive at the airport about half an hour before Stina, as my anxiety will now allow me to wait. I peruse the lovely remodeled Tom Bradley terminal (there is a damn champs & caviar bar….hold the caviar, but wow). And then I realize I forgot my kindle. Panic attack ensues. I call my brother, he finds it in the daypack I was planning to take before I changed my mind and switched to another one. Those little fuckers are just so small…a blessing and a curse. Stina arrives and calms me down. We decide Brett will mail it to me in Queenstown and I’ll get it upon arrival Christmas even – so now even this little jew gets a Christmas present! See, this is a good thing (glass half full soooooo does not suit me). I am still slightly depressed, so naturally I rationalize that I deserve panda express for all my troubles. I mean, poor me, forgetting my kindle for my two month vacation. Someone should start a charity in my name, really. Stina gets us two very large plastic cups full of wine. If you ever have a sad Rory on your hands, panda and wine will fix her right up. Lets be honest here, any form of booze and food should do the trick.

We arrived yesterday after a lovely 13 direct flight to Auckland via Air New Zealand. Apparently it was rated the #1 airline of 2014. And it was pretty fabulous, especially compared to some of the other shit airlines I have flown in my day. Also a United partner, go points! I will cover the highlights:

1. In flight entertainment. Holy shit this was amazing. There are so many movies you can create a “playlist” as you go through them so you have a short list from which to pick. I did not figure this out as I was not kidding about being technologically challenged. But Stina informed me of this while we were drinking beers in Auckland, and I’m impressed.
2. The flight attendants were half male. Sounds like a random fact, but male flight attendants are just less bitchy. However, when I declined dinner (after the panda express incident) the very nice Kiwi flight attendant informed me that the tray minus the hot meal involved cheese and crackers….so I gratefully accepted. Who turns downs cheese?
3. They don’t cut you off after 3 glasses of wine. Very generous with the wine in fact. And good wine! Good NZ wine! They just kept it a flowin’.
4. Real blankets. Not that paper thin itchy excuse for a blanket that other airlines pawn off on you. This shit was the real deal. Usually I need about 4 airline blankets to survive the arctic weather of an airplane, but I was good with my one.

So we arrive in Auckland at 8am. Stina gets randomly selected to go through the customs interrogation line. I think their customs officials need some profiling classes, as cute little Stina does not exactly scream to me “sneaking bio-hazard materials into a foreign country”. But alas we make it to the airport bus counter, where the old man at the counter proceeds to give us a brief tour of the entire city in map form before giving us our tickets, even though all I asked him was which line we need to take. It is apparently to me I am going to have to take my bitchy resting fact off autopilot, as these people are just so damn nice.

We arrive at our hostel around 9am. We took one look around the place and decided we would henceforth refer to ourselves as the Bougie Backpackers. Definitely an interesting crowd to say the least. Our room is not ready. So we do what any normal Southbay girl would do without a place to shower on Saturday morning would do, we inquire about brunch…preferably bottomless. We quickly realize brunch is not their thing here (a shame, really). Perhaps I could start a foundation bringing brunch to developed countries that clearly need the help. I am in the market for a job… Everyone is very excited about a racecar “drift” competition that is happening in Auckland today. For those of you confused, just think Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift. Yeah, that shit. But since its just down the street and these people can’t even spell “mimosa” we head down to the harbor to see what all the excitement is about. Turns out, there is a reason Paul Walker (RIP) opted out of the Tokyo Drift movie…drifting is basically an excuse to burn rubber and slam into shit. It’s basically race car driving for men with very small penises….or just short attention spans, I suppose. We did get some free ear plugs out of it though. And found a lovely farmers market where we ate every free sample to be found.

We had been warned that Auckland sucks. We quickly realized that is true. With our room still not ready, we went to a bar and got a pitcher. And another. And then maybe one more. I asked to sample a few of the beers before ordering, as I had no idea what beers they have down here. The bartender then made a joke about how I was trying to get free beer. I thought about educating him on his excellent sales tactics, but thought better of it and giggled along. No bitchy resting face here people! Stina then got us dillas while I checked us in. I am typically skeptical of Mexican food in all foreign countries, but it was actually pretty damn good. Or maybe that was the three pitchers talking. Long story short, because I’m sick of typing, we took a 4 hour nap after which we planned to go out and rage. Woke up at 9pm and immediately went back to bed for another 9 hours. We are party animals.

I don’t have any pictures for you today, because really nothing that interesting happened. No, I did not take a picture of the drift competition. You’re welcome. Today is wine tasting day!! And happiness ensues….

My first official trip picture - Stina getting down on dillas in our hostel room
My first official trip picture – Stina getting down on dillas in our hostel room

Dinos are going down under!

Today is the day – Christina (who will be referred to as Stina from here on out) and I will be spending two months in Australia and New Zealand. In an effort to accurately depict what we are in for, I have opted for visual aids.

I think this one pretty much sums us up
I think this one pretty much sums us up
The baby dino song
The baby dino song

We will start our journey in Auckland, spending the first three weeks travelling through New Zealand. As you probably know (read: you should already know), NZ is the adventure capital of the world. Probably a bad combination for me, since when I travel I think I’m fucking Bear Grylls and attempt to do the most ridiculous shit on the planet (remember the “bridge” over the anaconda filled river in the Amazon? or when I almost killed my friend canyoning in Slovenia?). In actuality, I am just an accountant who sprains my ankles when brunch gets out of hand…so this should be interesting. If we make it out of NZ alive – which may not happen, based on what I have planned – we will head to Australia for the last month and tackle the east coast. If you wish to follow our journey in pictures, you can use #dinosdownunder. Just disregard the first few pictures posted by some losers who don’t know their hashtag is about to get jacked.

If you judge people for spelling mistakes or overuse of profanity at inappropriate times, I suggest you end your time with this blog now. You can bookmark this little blog of mine when you need reassurance that our lives are way better than yours. I will do my best to feed your jealousy at all times. If the urge to buy a flight to come meet us strikes you then I have three words for you: JUST DO IT. Unless we don’t like you – but be assured, you would know it if we didn’t.

We'll miss you all...I swear
We’ll miss you all…I swear

To pack or not to pack, that is the question….

When traveling, I always see those girls who have a backpack the size of a tic tac box and yet still look effortlessly cute with a full face of makeup. Where the hell do these bitches find room for things like fake eyelashes, travel hair dryers and gladiator sandals in that backpack? I, my friends, am not one of those girls (I am aware that you are currently thinking to yourself, “no shit”). I have finally accepted the fact that I will look like I am going to (or coming from, more likely) the gym every day for the next two months of my life. The obstacles that have defeated me in my packing challenge are as follows:

Issue #1 – Summer in New Zealand is apparently not always hot.  Who would have thought?  It’s close enough to Australia, so shouldn’t the damn sun be out in December?  Noooooo.  This leaves me with the problem of packing for everything from lows in the 30’s to highs in the 100’s over my two months of travel (and no, I do not mean Celsius).  Those of you that know me are also aware of the fact that I do not actually own clothes appropriate for weather in the 30’s, as I typically avoid cold like the plague.  And do you people know how heavy jackets are?  Let’s remember, I’m carrying this shit on my back.  I did a trial run carrying my backpack around my house.  I’m already considering busting out the icy hot. Note to self: pack icy hot.

Issue #2 – The toiletries necessary to make me [barely] presentable to the world seem to multiply with every year I age.   When I was 21, I’m pretty sure I traveled around Europe with mascara and 2-in-1 shampoo.  Now at the ripe old age of 29, my bag looks like I’m traveling saleswoman for Oil of Olay.  Not to mention the entire ziplock bag I have devoted solely to medicine.  I’m not talking just pain killers and pepto – this baby comes complete with things like Rx ear drops, a z-pak purchased for $6 in Vietnam, sleeping pills (do people sleep without these?), and the few xanex I have left in life, just to name a few. Because who knows when I’ll get an ear infection which leads to bronchitis while having a panic attack induced by lack of sleep. Should this situation occur, I will be ready, and then who will be laughing?  The days of blissful ignorance and worry free travels are over. Luckily my 50-pack of earplugs doesn’t add too much weight.

Issue #3 – Every time I remove a pair of jorts from my backpack, and angel loses its wings. It’s true. I die a little inside every time I take something out. But if it’s between my Jammy Pack or looking cute, the Jammy wins EVERY TIME. For those of you who don’t know, a Jammy pack is a fanny pack (yes, a fanny pack) with a built in speaker from which you can play music from your iphone/ipod/whatever. Of all the things I have purchased in my life, the Jammy is top ten at least, if not top five. But seriously – 1 pair of jean shorts for two months? That is just wrong. They sell jorts in Australia, right? I will find out – right after I finish my google search for “do they sell fireball in Australia?”

Issue #4 – I can’t fit this guy in my bag.IMG_0137-0

The end result? About 30 pounds of shit to carry around on my back for two months. Oh fuck, I just realized I forgot a towel.

The end result.  I have nothing.  But that shit is still heavy.
The end result. I have nothing. But that shit is still heavy.