I'm on a particularly high high right now be I just booked a full day LOTR tour for Friday! Gah!!! We will be visiting the WETA workshop, having an Orc sized lunch in a themed cafe, and getting to recreate innumerable scenes from the Trilogy. And you know I will. -grins- Picture requests? I'll take them below.
Anyway, day one was a bit of a hoot. I ran across a "Save the Dolphins!" demonstration outside of an art museum that took to the streets and probably ended up at Parliament. I lost interest after 12 blocks when they showed no signs of stopping. There was a coffin and people dressed up like skeletons and a Maori warrior who made lots of intimidating faces and babies. In strollers. Evidently they felt quite strongly about the topic too.
I took a cable car up to the top of the hill behind Welly and got some sweet views of the city but the highlight was meeting this guy!
Perfume. Because, come one. Look at the man. We need more shops with people like him in them.
Next stop were some botanical gardens. Trees, flowers, the occasional bird. Pretty cool stuff. I met a very enthusiastic young Brit named Adam on my stroll and we decided to be friends straight away. We'll be on the South Island at the same time so I might have found a travel buddy to meet up with! He seemed fun, and didn't set off any "stranger danger!" alarms in my head so...yay! New people!
I found a cool graveyard on my meanderings with a nudie statue in it.
He has been fuzzed to protect his dignity.
To end my day I visited Parliament and watched adults scream at each other from the safety of the public gallery. It was AMAZING. I don't know how anything gets done in government. They were impossibly rude to each other. One person would get up to present a bill and as soon as they opened their mouths the opposition would start arguing with them like they were in a Mystery Science Theatre film. If they got too unruly the head hancho would call "Order!" and that would shut one or two up for a minute or two and then they would get right back to it. I must say I was very impressed with the presenter's ability to persevere under such persistent harassment. I applauded her when she finished as I would a student, and was promptly told by one of the gallery guards that I wasn't allowed to do that. Whatever. She totally deserved it.
It looks pretty staunch like this but it was quite pretty inside. All of the security people were lovely. We had nice chats and they let me rub the head of their lucky Thai elephant. I was pretty stoked.