Hey everyone, I have some spare time in an internet cafe while Naomi is out running (training for her half marathon in September - wow). We are now on the island of Bohol in the Philippines. And I have not been taken hostage- smooth flying all the way here!
I dont have any pictures uploaded yet which is too bad, but will try to post some up later.
I spent 2 lovely days with Carl and Camille and Todd in Auckland. Unfortunately I have a mother-of-a-cold but we still managed to have a good time.
On Saturday Carl picked me up and drove me back to the house. We then went out to dinner at Todd's favorite bar downtown, the Brew on the Quay . They have the biggest beer menu I have ever seen- over 100 to choose from! I ended up with boysenberry cider which was pretty divine.
Then, my old flatmate Neil got in touch with me and it turned out that 2 of his good friends in Auckland just happened to be having their birthday party at the SAME time in the SAME bar.
So, in a matter of sweet coincidence I got to buy them drinks on behalf of Neil! I love running into people with random connection to me- definitely the best. The next day we took a nice day drive out of Auckland and went to the Clevedon to their famous farmers market - very exciting! There were all kinds of crazy exciting foods there, including paella which is what we took with us for a beachside picnic.
Then back home were we had a delicious dinner and watched Mad Men- a nice relaxing day. Then up at 2:30 the next morning to head on the next leg of my journey- Manila! like I said, the flights were pretty boring and unevenetful- i forgot how much flying takes it out of you though! I was completely exhausted by the time I arrived in manila at 5pm that night (after only 1.5 hours of flying= yikes).
The Philippines are unbeleivably hot, I nearly fell over when I got off the plane. living in New Zealand for 4 years did not prepare me! It's quite muggy and the air is still. yet inside all the cars and busses it is freezing with air conditioning so you have to carry a jersey/sweater with you for the indoors. I can't imagine what the place must have been like before air conditioning. I just arrived last night, and have spent most of my time sleeping since then...however a few things have still happened of course!
I did get to try a mango smoothie last night, and an avocado smoothie today which is surprisingly delicious and sweet. much better than the bun i had for breakfast which had icing and grated cheddar cheese on it...kinda strange. I am still getting used to constantly needed to stay hydrated, but being unable to drink water out of the tap. When Naomi gets back we are catching a bus and going about 3 hours.
We are then catching a boat out to a tiny island to stay at a research station (what they are researching I am unsure). It should be good and I am looking forward to a nice cold shower and a sea breeze! And of course another mango smoothie, that was delicious.
The traffic here is also pretty crazy with bicyclists, mopedists, motorcyclists, pedetrians and cars all zooming around. there aren't really lanes in the road but there doesn't seem to be any accidents. Also, since there are no rules people seem a lot less angry at each other. An interesting thought. People have to be a lot more aware of what's going on, and reacting all the time. This makes driving very different!