19 Dec Christchurch
We arrange to leave the luggage at the Aarburg motel, and catch the bus into the city. A relaxed wander round the Re:start mall, a coffee and choc brownie, a few more souvenirs bought. There’s a huge Christmas tree, in the middle of trees in full leaf, and backed by a clear blue sky. We revel in today’s sun and warmth – why go back to a northern winter? Everyone here is in vests and shorts.
We catch another bus and get back to the motel in loads of time, to find no one there. But she’s left a note that she’ll be back at 2pm. And she is, and gives us a lift to the airport.
A short hop to Auckland, with great views of Mount Taranaki on the way, before the big flight all the way across the Pacific, the Equator and the International Date Line. Triple whammy.
I watch Diary of a Wimpy Kid, though I don’t think my plot summary or critique would do it justice. Then I sleep a bit, wake a bit, and watch three episodes of The Big Bang Theory. The eleven and a half hour flight isn’t too bad. Time to touch down in San Fran six hours before we set off from Auckland.
We catch the Airporter out to Manzanita Park and Ride and then a taxi into Mill Valley. Luggage is deposited and we go to hang out in the Depot cafe. Sunny, but only warm if you’re in the sun wearing a coat.