My thoughts on New Zealand…..

I would like to thank Puaji, Paji and Phenji for the fantastic hospitality and accommodation they gave us. It was great to play hockey on the full size pitch, located in the back garden!

God created a stunning New Zealand, pity mankind did a poor job with the infrastructure. The infrastructure is need of modernisation….when you live in a world that is connected, you would expect every country to be better connected or connected at a reasonable level, also more free wifi spots would be welcome.

Indians used to have a fantastic reputation for hard working. The Indians who settled in New Zealand in the last two years seemed to have come on student visa’s and are illegally working, also where as the previous generation came to New Zealand and worked hard, invested back into New Zealand and are proud to call it their home. The new lot seem to earn quick money and just send it back to India.

The South Island is fantastic and spectacular, if you could only visit the one of the islands I would recommend the south.

Christchurch…..

Christchurch…..

In the BBH hostel guide which shows the hostels that are members of BBH and gives them a rating, this hostel is rated at 83%. The ratings really do not make any sense, as Chester St Backpackers was not very clean, the bed sheets had strange stains and the showers looked like they had not been cleaned in a long time, the manager is not very friendly…we had vacated our room by 10am and she asked is to leave the hostel as it was 11am, there was a couple there from Singapore, she never said anything to them….O well……suppose she has some issues!

We left the hostel around 11:30 and walked to a restaurant called:

The Lotus Heart
Vegetarian Restaurant and Tea House
363 St Asaph Street
Christchurch
New Zealand
T: +64 3 377 2727
W: www.thelotusheart.co.nz
E: mail@thelotusheart.co.nz
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Shop within the restaurant
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Sangeet had the bun-less burger which came with salad and fries, I had the sunflower burger with salad. Both dishes looked and tasted nice. By the way this restaurant also serves egg. I have found that if you say you are allergic to egg, the staff make sure the ingredients do not contain egg and are kept away from egg.

Afterwards, we had a wander around the city centre. We first came here 7 years ago, it was a very vibrant city with lots to do. Since the earthquake the city centre is very quiet, perhaps quiet is an understatement I should say dead. The only people around were tourists, the workmen and a few workers in the shops just a few hundred yards away from the ‘red zone’. The city looks like it has been hit by a bomb. It is very sad to see it this way, especially when we remember its vibrant past.

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For email subscribers:
Red Zone, Christchurch, New Zealand

After walking around the city centre we came across a small section of the city that was trading out of containers, it is quite amazing to see this, at last a bit of life in the city. We popped into a nice book store….it is amazing to see the shop owners taking charge, continuing with their business after a devasting earthquake.

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We later walked through Hagley Park, a huge park, pretty amazing to see God’s creation that was able to withstand the earthquake, whilst man’s creation was destroyed. The park is amazing with a beautiful canal flowing through it. There is also a fantastic rosé garden,which we walked through. It was the perfect setting for a Bollywood film. So we decided to take the part!

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Bollywood pose
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On walking back to the hostel we passed the cathedral, it was very sad to see part of it crumbled.

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Cathedral:
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We passed a cafe where Sangeet had a hot chocolate and I had a vegan chocolate cake.

Beatstreet Cafe
324 Barbadoes St
Christchurch
New Zealand.
T: +64 3 666 324
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Kundalini yoga advert
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The restaurant does meat and vegetarian dishes.

On returning to the car we drove to the hotel near the airport:

Sudima Hotel
Car Memorial Ave & Orchard Rd
Christchurch
New Zealand
T: + 64 3 358 3139
IMAGE_63299853-9EF5-4181-A9AB-0D727153BF73.JPG

This hotel is owned by Indians and there was a feint curry smell in the room. I could not bring myself to call reception and say there is a curry smell in our room. Especially when it was occupied by two Indians!!

Partial eclipse…..

Partial eclipse…..

At most hostels, there is a notice board, informing you of the weather, events, what to see and on this day a partial eclipse at 10:28am. The best way to view is through safety glasses.

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Everybody came out to see the partial solar eclipse

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One person holds the safety glasses, whilst the other takes a photo

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For email subscribers:
Partial solar eclipse

More here:
Partial solar eclipse take 2

A partial eclipse occurs when the Sun and Moon are not exactly in line and the Moon only partially obscures the Sun. This phenomenon can usually be seen from a large part of Earth outside of the track of an annular or total eclipse. However, some eclipses can only be seen as a partial eclipse, because the umbra passes above the Earth’s polar regions and never intersects Earth’s surface.

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