The naked bus experience
No we weren't naked ON the bus that's just the name of the company. The bus was like a gray hound, pretty spot on actually. Getting to this bus was an adventure! In a nut shell our backpacks fully packed and running up a hill to a city bus stop in the toasty sun is not an easy task! We missed the bus! We waved and yelled but he just kept driving by! So then we hitched a ride from the next guy to drive by us. He took us into the village to catch the city bus. The village is usually a great spot to catch a bus but not during school let out. Holy cow! Every city bus that passed us was shut down to the public (there are no school buses in NZ. They ride reserved city buses). So we couldn't catch a bus out of the village so we worked HARD to find a ride out of the village. I finally got us one with 3 people eating at a cafe. They drive us to the train station to get us into Aucklsnd.
We had already paid for the naked bus to Rotorua and it was leaving at 5:15 we had to get into Aucklsnd or we'd be out $26 each and our means of transportation.
I met a guy sitting behind me, in his 50's who is a native to NZ and shared a lot of info with me on the ride to Rotorua (the Las Vegas of NZ).
We talked about the U.S. & NZ culture. The food and he gave me some traving tips for NZ and good advice on Austrslia as he lived there for 20years.
One thing he told me which I told him I'd be posting about on the blog was his impression of Oregon. It was classic!
He started by asking me what kind of trees we have in Oregon. I responded, pine trees, fir trees, & maple trees. Then he asked if we had redwoods and I said, oh your thinking of California.
He said when I think of Oregon I think of men with beards and red flannel shirts with chain saws (I think he said chain saws in their back pockets). Haha!
I told him some places were like that for sure but not everywhere.
He told me (what I have heard other times on the trip) that NZ doesn't think highly of our politics and that Obama is on the news a lot. Then he asked how our economy was recovering and if Alicia and I were effected by it at all. He knew quite a lot about the U.S. but he'd also been to a few places - D.C., San Fran., New York.
He said he knew some Kiwis that went to the U.S. to buy houses when our market dropped so that they could invest. He made it sound like it turned out to not be as good of an idea as they had thought.
Alicia and I are in Rotorua now working in a hostel for a few hours in trade for a free stay for a few nights before heading to Wellington for the weekend. We are meeting some great people!