13 xii 2011
1714- on the super shuttle heading to the airport
1900- waiting for our flight from Christchurch
2031- flying between Christchurch and Auckland
2327- souvenir shopping
Lunch- slice of meat lovers pizza and a coke
Dinner- beef and rice and shrimp tempura
Random fact- Penguins have lice. I actually knew this at one time (I had
downloaded the paper back a few years ago when Aub and I were looking for
excuses to go to Antarctica), but had forgotten.
I was woken up entirely too early, about 740. We loaded up the van and set off. Turns out
we had forgotten to take the table off the top, so that slid off just after we
got on the highway so we had to go back for
it. Then we were off again. The drive was uneventful, my mom kept passing
people apparently no one wanted to drive a reasonable speed today. We got to the super shuttle place shortly
after 11, got everything unloaded and Bones checked in. Since I was meeting Emily to get some
leafhoppers we couldn't check our luggage yet so we went in and got something
to eat. From where we were sitting we
could see the Antarctic terminal. The
shuttle driver said the plane flew down yesterday and one flew back up earlier
today. The one I could see was an NSF
plane and painted grey. There was a sign
on the building saying it was the US's Antarctic program. One day I will go there. I met Emily in the drop off area and got my
leafhoppers and talked to her for a few minutes. She said her major professor was excited to
get some US lice and that any raptor lice can come my way. She also mentioned he worked on penguin lice
for his PhD, which answered my thought from last night about penguins having
lice or not. Once she left we went and
checked our luggage. Turns out we were
allowed an average of 20k each, and since we were below that we also checked my
poster tube. Along the way my mom found
her new favorite store- it was full of cute and semi functional things, right
up her alley. Then we went through security
and eventually boarded our plane. I
slept most of the way, just waking up
long enough to take a picture of the coastline.
Once we landed we collected our luggage, put it on a cart (aka trolley)
and walked to the international terminal about ½ a mile away, where we found out we couldn't
check our luggage in until 0400. After
consulting various people we decided the best plan would be to get a locker at
the station by the ferry docks. While we
were standing there my mom saw someone associated with the Pittsburg Steelers,
who was wearing team logos and a super bowl ring… All kinds of interesting things going on in
the airport- some guy was checking his surfboard, and another guy was pushing
around a small kayak on his luggage cart.
Also, the display boards were fun to watch because instead of being
digital they used flip cards to post the schedule so whenever it updated there
were cards flipping all over. We caught
the bus to the harbor, and ended up stuck in pretty bad traffic- the Foofighters
were playing in Auckland tonight and apparently most people were catching the
bus near the harbor. There were people
lined up everywhere. We eventually made
it to the ferry dock, found the lockers and deposited our stuff. Then we wandered around the area getting
Christmas presents and souvenirs. We
grabbed dinner at the Food Alley again and then wandered around the docks. Mom discovered the joys of night photography
and got some awesome pictures of the skyline using the cleats as a tripod. We got some gelato, and watched the ferry
come in. An ambulance showed up and took
someone off- it looked like one person and fallen in, maybe 2 people, and one
of them got wheeled off. If we had timed
things just a bit better we actually could have caught a ferry this afternoon
and played around on it, coming back at about midnight, too bad. We then got our stuff and caught the airport
bus just before 2300, and are now hanging out at the airport.
14 xii 2001
Today will happen twice, thanks to a crossing of the
international date line…
0802- sleeping in the airport food court
1023- getting through security
1553- landing in Brisbane
2352- Flying somewhere over the Pacific
Lunch/Dinner- chicken pot pie, mashed potatoes, a beer, and
Random fact- Insects and food are on the same declaration
line of the US customs form.
Slept pretty well on my food court bench until my parents
woke me up about 0400 to go check in.
Once we had our tickets we waited for immigration to open (no exit
stamp) then my mom picked up her duty free stuff while I napped. The parentals got breakfast then we boarded
our flight to Brisbane. I slept off an
on but the flock of kids sitting in front of us was screaming their heads off
and the baby kept climbing over the seat and trying to steal my soul. I hid behind the airplane safety card while I
ate my chocolate croissant in an attempt to keep my soul. I hate kids.
Since our layover was only a couple of hours we didn't go through customs,
instead we went to the transit desk and got our new boarding passes. This took ages because there was only a
single person working there and the process was rather slow. My parents were hungry so they got food, and
got me a brownie which was pretty good. Eventually they opened our gate and we
went over, showed our passports and waited around. There was an announcement that someone had
left a cell phone back in the transit desk area and sure enough, my mom was
missing the little phone I'd given her so I went back and got it. Our boarding was delayed because the winds
were so favorable our flying time was an hour less than expected and they
wanted us to arrive around the correct time.
First time I've ever had that happen.
They boarded us about 1100 and we departed shortly after. I was a row up and a few seats over from
where my parents were seated. I played
some trivia and read my book before eating my dinner- chicken pot pie. I'd really wanted the lamb, but the flight
attendant claimed they had run out (although magically the person behind me was
able to get lamb). The pot pie was
pretty good though so it worked out fine. Slept almost the rest of the way to
LAX, waking up just in time for breakfast.
We landed about 0530, and were able to deplane after the paramedics came
on and took a guy from the back off who wasn't feeling well. Immigration wasn't bad- there was a screaming
kid that they let cut in line, but luckily we got called up just as her family
was brought forward. We stepped back to
let her go to the booth we were going to, but the guy called us up and said to
come up anyway (and then told us he didn't want to deal with the screamer, and
hopefully none of us would start crying).
The guy was pretty funny, made some jokes about wanting a loan if we had
over 10000 in currency. Picked up our
luggage and cleared customs. They didn’t
even want to look at my bugs, it was strange.
Then it was off to the rental car place and drove to my grandpas.