Seeing New Zealand with new eyes

Arrivals at Auckland airport. Everyone looked stunningly familiar. It took forty minutes before we bumped into someone who actually was.
Arrivals at Auckland airport. Everyone looked stunningly familiar. It took forty minutes before we bumped into someone who actually was.

You travel to come home and see it in a new way.

I’ve always liked this quote about travel. Only now I come to search for its origin I can’t get the language precise enough to find its author. Maybe it’s just a much quoted sentiment. It’s true, anyway. For me never so plainly as in the first hours of arrival. Here’s what we saw:

  • We dress casually. Like, all the time. We might dress up to go to work, or for a special event, but not to go to the airport, or shopping.
  • There is a higher rate of shorts wearing per capita, per degree of temperature than anywhere else in the world. Seriously, it’s not that hot.
  • There is a strong (and inverse) correlation between a woman’s age and her hair length. I would wager the majority under forty have hair below their shoulders, and the majority over don’t.
  • We’re courteous to strangers. Everyone apologises for meager bumps of luggage trollies.
  • When the pilots on our domestic hop offered some commentary on the sights we could see below it was a simultaneous reminder of a) how note-worthily beautiful New Zealand can be and b) it is worth celebrating every time the weather is cloud free enough to provide for a decent view.
  • Other airport signs might say “trolleys not permitted/authorised/allowed…” Auckland’s say “no trolleys through here” like some neighbour is yelling at kids to get off of their lawn.

6 thoughts on “Seeing New Zealand with new eyes

  1. Hi Joe, good to read your latest message – welcome home – yes it’s only having been away that you realise how special it is here in N.Z.

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