Auckland (23rd March to 25th March)

Thursday, 25th March, 2004

Due to the timezone difference, presently only 1 hour, or more likely the lack of decent sleep: about 4 hours a night for three nights has taken its toll. Forcing myself to concentrate in meetings and actively add value. Mental fuzziness.

Sleeping in strange beds in many hotels you learn how to get a good night sleep. Its an occupational skill. Rule One: keep the room cooler than 17 degrees C. Rule Two: use a flat pillow. The problem with many hotels is they pride themselves on big puffy pillows. Instant neck problems here.

I have a bad habit of falling asleep about when the cabin crew start the safety demonstration and wakeup when level flight is reached. Its uncanny.

Reading the my new purchase in the Lonely Planet range: Japan. I have a theory that I enjoy travel to countries that I wrote school projects on (if that makes any sense) Love Actually on the screen in economy. Ahh, London. See you next week.

Sick of forms. To leave Australia, arrive in New Zealand, leave New Zealand (after paying NZ to get out of Auckland International Aiport, thank you very much) and finally arrive back into Australia takes 4 forms. Name, address, email, SARs, Passport number. There has to be a better way! In the time between the Singapore trip and the Auckland trip, the Australian arrival form has changed!

5 minutes from Immigration to Australia. The joys of packing light!

Wednesday, 24th March, 2004

The Auckland Sheraton property has been sold to someone else, according to the gossip. I hope they have deep pockets as the place is a little tired. The hotel rooms are still stuck in 1983, maybe 1984. No high speed internet access. At least BBC-World is on TV.

Meet Luke in NZ. He is a new dad, only 4 days in. He has another 21 years of fun. Men that have had children, and been involved in all the birthing action, remember more about the process of child birth and other obscure obstitric details than one would expect through the years. Is this universal?

I also realise that I am carrying 896Mb of CompactFlash memory to Europe. This is a massive amount of storage (about 900 digital camera shots) before I load them into the laptop. How the world of memory has moved on.

Tuesday, 23rd March, 2004

6.50pm flight to Auckland, NZ. Hello Qantas Club International Sydney, my second home. Almost second office as I run into Barry and discuss business.

Neil Perry my arse. The food on the 2hour 20 minute flight tastes vaguely familiar. Yes, I am reminded of 3 years of boarding house food. The lamb was probably from the mid 1980s as it was tough. Thanks to the iPod, apart from the dubious food, its a quick and painless flight. Arrive 11pm, hotel lobby bar until late.