Story Index:

Eclipse!!
08/29/2017

Summer Weekend in the Colorado Rockies
07/19/2016

Kim's Day In The Sun
02/28/2015

Tracing Roots
01/15/2015

Whitney Completes Her Master's Degree
01/10/2015

Day Trip to Moorea
11/01/2012

Stopover in Tahiti
10/30/2012

Exploring New Zealand's Northland
10/27/2012

Waiheke Island
10/24/2012

2012 Triathlon World Championships
10/23/2012

Travails with Tom-Tom
10/21/2012

Off to New Zealand!
10/18/2012

Cycling on the Oregon Coast
07/24/2012

Partial Solar Eclipse, May 20
05/23/2012

"Tour of California" Bike Race comes through town!
05/15/2012

Wildflower Triathlon a family affair
05/07/2012

Truth in Packaging?
04/01/2012

Nik Graduates from Cal Poly
12/10/2011

Cal Poly's Open House Weekend
04/17/2011

Cultural Musings...
09/18/2009

2009 Triathlon World Championships
09/12/2009

Sightseeing around the Gold Coast
09/09/2009

South Bank: Brisbane's Fine Arts center
09/05/2009

Brisbane, Australia
09/04/2009

Catching up . . .
08/31/2009

Summa Cum Laude, Baby!
06/15/2008

Kim completes her first Half-Ironman
06/10/2008

Kim Visits Home for Wildflower Triathlon
05/16/2008

The Last Supper
02/16/2008

Farewell, Dad
01/15/2008

Whitney Plays Final Soccer Game
12/10/2007

Watch the Women's World Cup!
09/12/2007

Kim Blazes Chicago Triathlon
08/27/2007

Nik Bicycles Pacific Coast
08/15/2007

Whitney Begins Final Season
08/13/2007

More Triathlons for Kim
06/15/2006

Corvallis gets snow!
03/09/2006

Pac-10 Conference Player of the Week
01/15/2006

Whitney's new cat
09/26/2005

Kim in Chicago Triathlon
08/31/2005

Rare family get-together
08/23/2005

Empty Nest
08/11/2005

Whitney Signs National Letter-of-Intent
02/08/2004

ODP cancels European tour
04/11/2003

Whitney renamed to Regional Team
08/07/2002

Kim graduates from Willamette
06/17/2002

Whitney Stars in High School Soccer
03/07/2002

Nik graduates from UTI
01/07/2002

2001 - A Year for Remembrance
12/30/2001

Whitney selected to the 2001 State ODP pool for U-15 Girls
03/22/2001

Kim returns from Europe
02/02/2001

2000: A Year for Traveling
12/15/2000

Kim Travels Europe
11/24/2000

Whitney selected to the US Far Western Regional ODP Pool!
07/14/2000

Congratulations to Nik, Ygnacio Valley High Graduating Class of 2000!
06/30/2000
Off to New Zealand!

For the second time in her career, Kim is part of Team USA for the ITU World Triathlon Championships. The 2012 staging of this event is being held in Auckland, New Zealand, so we're traveling there to cheer her on in her race.

We left from San Francisco on Nov 16, and after brief layovers in Los Angeles and Tahiti, as well as crossing the International Date Line, we arrive in Auckland midday on Nov 18. The SFO-LAX leg is on Virgin America, with free onboard wifi ... cool, my phone sends/receives texts and emails in-flight! The latter two legs are on an Air Tahiti Nui Airbus A320, and I'm impressed with how quiet this plane is relative to the Boeing 747 we traveled aboard to Australia three years ago ... though I wish I could get more than 4 ozs. of Coke when the flight attendants come by with in-flight beverages.


Changing planes at the Tahiti airport.


With a non-stop flight, Kim has arrived in Auckland several hours ahead of us despite leaving San Francisco a few hours after us. Although three international flights arrived together, the line through Customs moves relatively smoothly, and New Zealand immigration officials are warm and friendly. Then we head for the rental car booth to meet another cheery, helpful Kiwi. We pick up our rental car and gingerly head out onto the roadways, remembering to keep to the left side of the road.

Our hotel is about a half-hour away in downtown Auckland, and we finally get there a couple hours later. It turns out navigating Auckland streets is a nightmare! Streets don't follow a grid-like layout, but meander around from north-south to east-west and even back to south-north! It's hard to tell whether you're heading toward or away from your intended destination. Intersections are a mishmash of horizontals, verticals, and diagonals--which then turn and go in a different direction once you've turned onto them. Also, without warning the lane you're in might suddenly turn into a left-turn lane or a right-turn lane or a bus-only lane. Despite a week of attempts, we never managed to simply drive around the block and end up where we started.


The Skytower, New Zealand's tallest building, looms over the Auckland skyline. The triathlon's transition area is on the middle wharf below the Skytower. The grandstands and finish chute are near the white building on the wharf to the right.



Posted by Dan 10/18/2012, revised 10/24/2012 by Dan
FreeStyle Journal 19.03.21
©2003-2011 by Dan Goodell

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