Well, September has certainly been a bit of a whirlwind month! We’ve been torn between impatiently trying to save our money, panicking about our future travel plans, and sad that we’re leaving a place we’ve grown to call home. We had our last days at work yesterday and are currently sitting in Auckland Airport ready for our flight to Christchurch to start the next part of our adventure! Here’s a snap at what we’ve been up to in September…
We moved out of our flat
The biggest and saddest thing that happened this month is that we had to move out of the Jab-Pad. Our lease ended two weeks before our job contracts, so we moved into a hostel (Newton Lodge) for the rest of our time in Auckland. As hostels go (I’m not their biggest fan), it’s not bad: it’s clean, cheap, mostly quiet and has free unlimited wifi(!), but the kitchen is quite ill-equipped for the number of guests (four hobs, two microwaves & no oven) meaning making dinner was at times pretty stressful. Leaving the apartment was surprisingly emotional, who would have thought we would have become so attached to a one-room studio flat!? It was our base for finding our feet in Auckland, and was also a pretty big step for us as a couple I guess – the first contract that’s had both of our names on!
Eating & Drinking
Oh dear Lord I have spent so much money on food this month! Since its been our last month here, we kinda just wanted to try everything (again) before we left. And besides, Auckland is renowned for its broad selection of cuisine from across the globe, so we had to really! We’ve eaten at:
- Yoshizawa – Delicious, cheap Japanese food. I recommend the teriyaki tofu donburi. 9C Victoria Street East.
- Satya – A very reasonably priced Southern Indian restaurant with heaps of choice; my Channa Masala was divine. 271 K Road.
- Le Chef – The quaintest little French restaurant serving delicious coffee and fresh pastries, as well as traditional French dishes. Vulcan Lane.
- Hum Salon – A quirky café-cum-lounge with books and musical instruments, a great atmosphere and great coffee. 123 Grafton Road.
- Elliot Stables – An upscale food court offering a great choice of cuisine from across the globe. 39 Elliot Street.
- Eatbox – A ‘fast food’-style restaurant with a delicious tofu dish! Inexpensive & great for lunch. 350 Queen Street.
- Bluestone room – Short on vegetarian options food-wise, but they do offer a $10 steak and chips lunch deal. This rustic bar has a happy hour on Saturdays and a great vibe. 9-11 Durham Lane.
- Valentino’s Gelateria – Delicious, very reasonably priced ice cream. 99 Quay Street (part of the ferry building).
- That’s Amore – A homely, authentic, Italian restaurant where the pizza is almost as good as it is in Napoli. Shop M1, Courthouse Lane.
- The Station – A cute bar that looks like a train, and they have Sangria in the happy hour! 2 Beresford Square.
- The Food Space Launch – This event was only on for the day; in the Wynyard Quarter, food trucks served inexpensive street food from across the globe – Mexican, German, burgers, Spanish, etc.
Pub quiz at the Paddington
We went to a great pub quiz at the Paddington, a pub in Parnell. It’s held on Tuesday nights, is free to enter and they do a deal on pizzas! It was really popular and for good reason; the questions were varied ability (meaning I actually knew some of the answers!) and each round has a theme. A Tuesday night well spent.
The Paddington is also a great place to watch live sport, and they even take requests for football games etc if there is enough interest. James has gone there to watch some of the Rugby World Cup games, and requested the Arsenal v Chelsea game but there wasn’t enough interest unfortunately.
Address: 117 St George’s Bay Road, Parnell
The Royal New Zealand Ballet
At the start of the month, my friend Rachel and I went to see the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Aotea Centre. It was simply stunning – beautiful dancers, sets, costumes and a funny but mesmerising performance. We weren’t allowed to take photos, so here are some from their Facebook page:
Auckland Art Gallery
James and I decided to finally visit one of Auckland’s best tourist attractions. We strolled around the bottom floor and took a peek at the Story of Rama Exhibition (a collection of miniatures from the National Museum in Delhi, India, which are currently doing a world tour). The exhibits throughout the museum are unique and interesting – it’s not painting after painting – and it’s completely free to visit.
Address: 1 Kitchener Street
In my last monthly update I mentioned that I’ve gone No ‘Poo, meaning I’ve stopped using commercial shampoo and conditioner. This month I noticed that my hair has become increasingly dry and brittle, and, after reading a few articles online, I decided to lower the frequency and ratio of my baking soda mix. I’ve also tried swapping the BS to eggs or honey and used coconut oil as a deep conditioner. I usually cut my own hair while I’m away from home, but I decided to treat myself to getting a good couple of inches cut off the length (and split ends!) at The Cut, a no-appointments hairdressers on K Road, for $35.
Hope you are all well & had a good September!
Thanks for reading,