Thursday, September 25, 2008

Arrivals and Other Things

On September 3rd, I arrived in the largest city in New Zealand: Auckland, which still only has 1.2 million people living there (a far cry from the 12+ million I dealt with daily in Seoul). It is a quaint place, very reminiscent of Sydney, actually, in terms of architecture and the way the city has been planned.

After securing a room for myself at City Lodge (it's a subdivision of YMCA) which is very clean and offers good service ($65/night), I walked into town. City Lodge was a good choice because it was far away enough to not have to deal with any real noise, but only 5 minutes from the center, where there are tons of shops and restaurants.

Auckland Tower

After living in Seoul for two years, I've been pretty spoiled with the restaurant scene. Many places are open 24hours so you are never at a lack for food. I was expecting restaurants and little sandwich shops to be open around 8pm here, but most of them closed around 5 or 6, their day-over (very quaint- reminds me of France).

I found everything so incredibly expensive, but after having converted some prices, hotels and restaurants were pretty average when compared to Montreal prices.

Some astronomical prices that I must warn about are the cigarettes and the taxis. Cigarettes cost $10.80 a pack. Insane! I've never seen such a thing. I think Montreal is still way below that price.

I had to take a taxi from City Lodge to Star City Bus Station. It is literally less than 5 minutes from the hotel but because my bags were really heavy and it was uphill, I opted for a cab. It cost me about $8! Can you imagine! That would have cost me less than $3 dollars in Seoul. Ah, I will miss the cheap transportation, that's for sure.

Anyway, soon after arriving in Auckland, I headed out to accomplish my most pressing goal: shaving my head. I've been thinking about doing it for the past year, but didn't want to do it in Korea because it is still quite the conservative place. So I waited until I got here and Neil Seck, my hairdresser, in a state of shock and horror, hesitantly agreed to cut it for me.

Below, a video of the process. Thanks for the digital camera Seung Ah, Jong In and John. Because of you, I get to show you this.

The final look #2 cut. I love it! Now it was time to start afresh.

Me and Neil


Tijana said...

Hey pretty maaaammaaaa! So that's where you're hiding! And yes, a big thank you to whoever got you the digital camera so we could watch this fascinating Britney Spears experience! (Sorry, now that he has mentioned it, it just sticks around).

Good luck, lady! I'll be reading you, for sure.

skitsch said...

HEY!!!!!!!!!!!you did it!!!
yes I'm still enjoying cheap cigarettes,cheaper taxis in here.ahahaha

you definitly look healthier!

and glad to read your blog again.

L said...

So glad to have the two of you around. I hope you guys will like this new little adventure. I'm keeping up with your writings too. I'll be commenting more often I hope!


alowenthal said...


Susan said...

OMG u shaved your head! {of course by the time you read this your hair has probably grown} I'lll watch all the videos on my home pc, it won't let me view it here at work. Be safe, love your blogsite, I'll keep in touch with you like this and via email, hey so glad to read that you've been upgraded to digital camera world! LOL! Do you have a facebook or myspace account? if so email to me the info.... love you! ( Susan & Stephan)

L said...

Gotta say, the hair feels pretty darn good. Nice to know that I can wash my stubble and then towel dry it and then that's it! No hassle, no worries, just simple stuff. The only downside is that now I can see the gray hairs more easily. I'm getting old! God help us all.

Susan, I did have a Facebook account but didn't like the vibe, so I'm sticking to blogspot. Suits me better. Thanks for writing guys!

Anonymous said...

Hi again,
I am enjoying the world tour. The shaving video is a "degi". Take good care of yourself.

rita said...

Wow! I must be slow...when I went on the blog today I discovered your first entries and pics (hair etc.) You look great and happy! I loved the last pics especially the colored pools ...exquisite paintings; very proud of your photography and writing. You are one adventurous woman. Love