The sea, the sea (vers. 2), NightCafé AI

The sea, the sea

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do yesterday. Another museum? Another neighborhood? I did know that I was hungry after yesterday’s long post, so I headed out with the intent of returning to Cima for more eggs and, er, bacon.

It was grey and breezy. Ah, another beautiful day in Auckland, I thought. The sidewalks were crowded, but I was plugged into 80s music on my iPod. A Birkenstock shoe store caught my eye, and I was just turning in when someone called my name. Impossible, I thought, but I heard it again, louder this time.

It was Mickey. She was very obviously hungover from the previous night’s festivities. Scott the Brit (not to be confused with John the Scot) was upstairs in the internet area of the Korean owned kebob cafe (go figure) and why don’t I join them.

So I did. Mickey filled me in on the stuff that happened after my midnight departure. It sounded a lot like my own birthday drink fest, with, er, urgent bathroom visits and the like. Scott took some glee in showing me a photo that he had taken of me and John the Scot speaking. He hadn’t realized when he took the photo what we were talking about… Mickey told me that I had reached icon status. LOL. Here I was just trying to have a good time…

I parted with them with nary a clue about what I should do. Scott had suggested that I head down to the Viaduct, where the America’s Cup boats were. I was drifting in that general direction, when the Britomart travel center caught my eye. I had been thinking about getting across the water to Devonport, which the travel guide had described as being a village in look and sentiment.

The Britomart is all steel-glass modern. I learned later that it cost quite a pretty penny to build, so much so that they had to skip on the trains that they were planning on purchase for 1950s throw-backs instead. Someone lost their job over that one. But I was in the wrong place for travel to Devonport anyway. Head to the ferry, said the information attendant graciously. I wasn’t the first clueless tourist to show up at his window.

I bought my ticket at the very scaled down ferry office and made a mad dash for the departing boat. I spent some of the quick minutes across to Devonport writing out some postcards. More on that later.

Devonport is as charming and village-like as the guide stated. It reminded me so much of Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands area of Seattle, Washington. Yes, in that memory, I thought of Ned and our time there. Sigh.

I wandered in and out of the shops there. Julian, I think you will like the Strawpeople cd that I bought there. (Hear clips from that album here.) They are a NZ electronica/dance band. Nice sound. Jeff#2, I saw something at the antique shop that you might be interested in: an HMV portable gramophone. Masters Voice, if that rings a bell. Was that the kind of machine you were talking to me about the other day?

Mt. Victoria is near the end of the main walk in Devonport, with a paved road taking visitors to its summit. The view at the top is unbelievable, even if the photo below shows the grey, grey day.

Auckland

It took me forever to include that photo here, and I am due to meet Janene in just minutes. Oh, Janene, for those who don’t know, is the Aucklander that I met in Nairobi, Kenya some ten years ago. I met up with her and her long-term friend Frances last night. Oh, I have to dash. More later.

***

It is 8:20 p.m. and I am here in the Base Auckland internet room. I have missed my third chance to see Sophia. This evening, I seem to have arrived at the wrong place. Last night, I had departed with Janene and Frances just moments before her arrival — which I learned from the note on my door when I returned. 🙁

If I have a moment tomorrow to post, I will talk about the lovely time I enjoyed with Janene today, roaming the farmland north of Auckland. If not, then I am on the road to Wellington.

In any case, I need some sleep.

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