Monday 23 November 2009

About Today - Sunday

While I sit on my bed typing this as 10pm on Sunday night it is already 4pm Monday back in New Zealand which seems pretty weird. While I've got a few minutes free I thought I'd tell you a bit about what it's like here.

Late yesterday it started raining but by this morning it was a clear beautiful day. While it's very hot when training in the Dojang it is quite comfortable outside - just like a nice summer's day in NZ.

Last night, being Saturday night, we got to bed between 11 and 12pm but there was a lot of road noise which went all night with general traffic plus a few boy racers. So sleeping for some of us was hard. It was also very hot overnight so we put the ceiling fan on... it makes a slight scraping noise on each revolution but isn't as bad as the traffic noise.

The hotel rooms are smallish but comfortable and each room has it's own bathroom. Breakfast is provided and is really nice with lots to choose from... too much for those trying to watch their weight.

This morning we had our own internal weigh in check. Mark Trotter brought a set of scales (as did someone else) so we had two sets. Most are happy with where their weight is at and know how much they need to lose by weigh in on Wednesday.

This morning the team and many supporters went down to the beach and the team and management practiced the Haka. It was a great sight... 45 kiwis performing Haka practice, 20 or so kiwi onlookers on this huge beach area with the city backdrop.

There was quite an audience of Argentinians by they time they'd finished and I'm sure they were wondering what kind of weird dance these strange people were doing.

We've noticed that most Argentinians, when they take in the New Zealand on our shirts and jackets, say "All Blacks". Some think the All Blacks must be playing in Argentina. Overall they're friendly and helpful people.

Next the team played some touch rugby and one of the Australians joined in, even scoring a couple of trys.

Only one minor injury that I know of... Amanda's lip
Oh yeah, and there's a fair few dogs around and someone ended up on the ground in some dog poo - nice.

Later everyone split to go shower or go shopping. I joined up with Steve and cruised the main street which is closed off as a big open mall. Some went shopping. Many things, including food and beer are pretty cheap. Mike Yates bought a locally hand made leather jacket for the equivalent of about NZ$40.

We bailed on this idea and found a Havanna Chocolate and Coffee shop. Like many retailers, they figured we only spoke English straight away and rustled around for their two copies of the menu that had English translations.
Estee and Alicia checking out some clothes.

We settled into our coffees and then Dave and Mike founds us and joined in, both having two double shot Expressos.

Waiting for pizza at lunch time. Yum.

At 1.30pm the Juniors headed off to the Dojang for their training first, from 2pm, followed by the seniors turning up at 3 and training from 3-5pm. On the way we found an upgrade for Steve Pellow's current wheels...

There are a ton of old classic, pretty beaten up cars and trucks... many old late 60's, early 70's falcons that some Kiwi westies would crawl over broken glass to get hold of. You can probably pick them up here for less than $1000 pesos (about NZ$300). I'm guessing that anyway.

Then there was today's training where I took what felt like a million pictures (see previous article).

I bailed from the training at about 4.30pm and took a long walk down to the waterfront to check out the Argentinian's enjoying the beach. It was pretty crowded and they were having a great time in the warm sun.

Just before heading back to the hotel I ran into a group of the Australian contingent who we'd met at Auckland airport. They're stating only a block away from the waterfront but said it was impossible to sleep because of the night life down on the foreshore with loud music blearing into the early morning. They also hadn't located any training facilities yet.
Bottom left are a couple of Australians practicing their patterns on the beach

So, I think we've done pretty well.

Enough... it's 11.20pm and I'm off to bed.