Reunion Night in Manukau City

I stepped out of Auckland Airport with the cool breeze welcoming me as the sun is slowly setting. The first day being in a new country despite the time of day always makes me very eager to explore - i don't even care if its in the middle of the night especially when i will be traveling with Freya in her homeland together for the longest time. I was so stoked about this trip partly because i miss her even though it felt like we weren't really apart. 

So, naturally *ehem* feeling very energetic and excited, we planned to get dinner and do some stargazing. Freya and Troy brought Huda (my travel buddy in NZ) and me to a fish and chip eatery to get take-outs. Ah, excited to try New Zealand's fish & chips. 

The appearance of the shop from the outside looks like i am walking into a freezer. The menu were a mix of Chinese food like dumplings, Yang Chow Rice etc and Western so i would expect a greasy meal. In the shop, there was this newsletter we picked up with some quirky contents and a column filled with trivia! 

Some of it goes like this:

  1. Some months have 30 days. Some have 31. How many months have 28 days?
  2. The Gobi Desert accounts for 25% of what country?
  3. In what novel do the characters go underground through an extinct volcano in Iceland?
  4. What are the world's fastest birds? - Falcons, Swift or Eagles?

Can you take a guess? (Answers on my next post)

We headed straight to Maraetai Beach to eat our dinner. Sounds romantic aye? The fish and chip was not too bad; I could at least gulp it down. I would definitely prefer Australia's Fish and Chips. Of course, what am i even comparing it to, right?! We had a fun time stargazing, learning about the Southern Cross constellation and feeding a stray dog that appeared out of nowhere. Kinda creepy at the same time, a scrawny dog in the cold. I did not managed to capture any awesome night shot of the stars and just wanted to enjoy the view. Such a pity there was no photos of the beach but its really beautiful - even in the dark. Ha.

 After a little bit more lounging, we drove back into Manukau City and took this night shot of Auckland City from the top of a hilly road.

Next on our agenda was to get some toiletries in “Pak N Save”. This supermarket chain is one of the last 3 major supermarket chains in New Zealand; the other two is New World and Countdown similar to Singapore’s local Giant and Sheng Siong. I felt like i was in a little bit of Ikea heaven in the mart though, so similar yet so different. 

Oh and a pair of sock cost me $8, OMG I have never paid so much for socks before! I ALWAYS MANAGED TO FORGET MY MOST IMPORTANT TRAVEL ESSENTIALS. So, please please please do not forget to bring your essentials when coming to New Zealand or you pay triple its price here and also triple the heart break.

We then settled into Freya’s apartment in a cosy neighbourhood in Manukau City. She gave me a mini tour of her little home and I scored a couch in the living room. I also was introduced to the love of my life, Tio, this cat of a ragdoll breed that has a grumpy face. He is so cute and fluffy like a candyfloss - or rather a really cute big blob of furball.

At first, Tio was really very friendly to me and then the next few days he got frightened of me because i was literally excited to hold him. The photos above are my last few successful attempts in holding him real tight before i left Auckland. Doesn't he look so adorable?

Oh and just to add, the couch is probably one of the best sleeps I ever had in my life of travel! I had a damn good feeling New Zealand is going to be a hell of an adventure with the most awesome people in my life.

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