Touch down in NZ! Here we are, live from Christchurch, fully installed in our local Affiliates HQ for a few days to acclimatise to both the lower temperatures, but also the 5 hour time difference.
The flight was super easy, but I did manage to solve the riddle of where SQ sends their shit old planes to see out their last days before being sold to Malaysian Airlines, that’s right, the SG to Christchurch route. Its like watching movies in the 90’s:
Still, I managed to find a much better view after groggily awakening from my sweet Norminson induced sleep. Peeling off my cashmere eye mask and lifting the window shade, I was greeted with this spectacular view as we made landfall:
I was pretty impressed… And excited… Until I realised that I was looking down on the 5 Passes race route… Hmmmmm:
Full credit goes to the new Christchurch airport for being easy, quick and friendly… Given how much time I have spent in airports recently I can say this with a bit of authority I guess now. Probably helps that there were fuck all people arriving, but still, its all pretty painless and the coffee is GOOD! Love that first NZ coffee… Bike assembly was done quick smart and it also didn’t take long for some of the local pussy to hunt me down:
That’s how I may look in a few days if the forecast of rain + wind + mountains comes true. Luckily for me I had some of the local Dirty Nomad support crew around to take me out on a CHCH tour, which was rather interesting. First, the Beauty part, up Dyers Pass:
Of course its not all Peanut M&M’s and Cider here in Char Char, there is also the small matter of epic Earthquake carnage that dominates the centre of the City. Having not been here for 6 years or more, its pretty freaky to see how much destruction there was and also how many reminders there are of the bad times, massive sections are uninhabitable. The beast:
Out to the burbs and this used to be a normal paved road, now looks like a WRC special stage:
Its pretty unreal to be heading through suburbs and streets that have been abandoned and where no one is living any more, rather unnerving. Thanks to Barb & Koz for the local low down and Red Zone tour!
As per usual, I have overloaded on the nutrition for 5 Passes – If you could possibly end up being tired, cold and wet you may as well have good shit to eat and Em’s bars and power cookies dominate:
And finally, for something totally different to finish off with today, Hooray for J Stubbs getting out in Singapore for the debut of his new Santa Cruz Tallboy LTc… The whole world LOVES Santa Cruz. Sweet ride and good photography all the way from Palau Ubin: