Its 3.30 in the morning on Thursday 19th January and I must get up, I do not get up straight away but when I do I feel quite robotic. Does that make sense? I am just going through the motions of getting up, showering, getting dressed and taking my stuff out to the car.
I barely even register arriving at Heathrow airport. I kind of come too at the point I am hugging mum and she is telling me I am shaking, when I let go I walk through the security part (which always makes me feel like a criminal, anyone else feel that like?) and I find the gate I need to wait at.
That is when I get a massive mix of emotions and I cannot decide which is appropriate, excitement, foolishness, happiness, sadness, and loneliness. I also feel scared and I already miss my friends and loved ones.
Last time, I had said I wouldn’t travel alone, it was my one stipulation because I never got to reminisce with anyone about the things I got up with when I was in Australia. But what am I doing? Guess what, I am travelling alone.
I had a window seat on the flight, I think these are the better seats as you get the put your head (on a pillow) against the window if you want to sleep, plus I feel like I am not so over crowded when you have to sit in the middle of the flight.
Luckily there was no one sitting next to me and then in the third seat away there was another woman, it meant we got to put our things on the seat next to us and felt like we had a little more room. OK, so it wasn’t perfect as I am sure that anyone who goes on long haul flights will tell you, but it was better than it could have been.
I am happy to do a post about what I did to make my long haul flight a little better – just ask.
I was even quite lucky on the second flight – yes I had the window seat again which I selected through the online check in stage (Oh, don’t select flight seats when booking your tickets, they charge something like £15 per selection but if you do it through the online checking in, it is free).
I sat next to one woman who was of Indian decent and she was lovely. She has been living in Auckland for nearly ten years and she even gave me a list of a few places I should visit.
Anyway, here is some flight information which I found interesting.
First leg –
Flight number – MH003
Seat – 71A
Altitude – 11277 meters
Total time flying – 12 Hours and 44 minutes
Distance travelled – 11,097 KM
Second leg –
Flight number – MH133
Seat – 18A
Total time flying – 11 hours and 32 minutes
Distance travelled – 8,982 KM
That’s a total of 20,079 KM (that is 12,476 miles) travelled from Heathrow to Auckland and 24 hours and 16 minutes of flying!!! No wonder I ache.
I don’t want to fly that distance again any time soon!!
When I had arrived and had gone through the security checks and got my visa stamped I had managed to find the skybus stop really easily and hopped on. It even had free WiFi so I was able to message Tom for a bit and also mum to let her know I landed safely.
It was gone one o’clock in the morning and I felt shattered.
Getting to the Hostel was easy and then I just had to get checked in and find my room, I was on the 10th floor of Auckland Central Backpackers or Base as a lot of people call it. It was a mixed dorm for eight people and it was ok. Now if I were back in my early 20’s just starting travelling this would have been the best thing ever, however I am not and I was tired and I ached and I just wanted my own space. Now thinking back, I probably should have asked for one of their private rooms for the couple of nights, however I didn’t so I had to deal with it for the time being.
If you speak to any traveller who visits Auckland, they will all know about Base Auckland. No one wants to stay there.
Oh and a random thing happened when I was waiting to check in – a guy who, apparently, had his pillow stolen had walked and waited in reception, he was in nothing but his boxers. Way to make an entrance, right?
Anyway, I shared the room with six other people for two nights, four (three girls and a guy) from Holland, one guy from North Italy and another guy from Sweden. They all spoke really good English which was nice and we even all went for Pizza on the second night.
It was interesting to hear all of their different plans for New Zealand and what they wanted to get out of it. They all had one thing in common though, they were between the ages of 18 and 20 and this was their first time travelling. None of them were looking to travel for more than six months either which I think was a waste of money – if they pay for the year, use it. You’ll never get it back.
Anyway – so far so good.