Land of Kiwi

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Hey Folks,

So what’s happening people? I just got back from a splendid vacation (Holiday) from Australia and New Zealand. Yes I was halfway across the world from home exploring a place I never thought I would get to see. Everyone asks me how it was, what it was like. All I reply with is: “Fantastic”.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a prick trying to dodge your unending questions. I feel that any explanation that I would give just would not do any justice in describing everything I have seen. You seriously need to experience it for yourself; it will leave you a changed person. I could go on about the land, the scenery, the people, the culture….. but you would never really understand where I am coming form had you not been there.

I was fortunate enough to be gone for over 3 weeks. Sadly that is not nearly enough time to experience these marvels, yet I found I was able to pack much into the 10 days at each. New Zealand, no wonder they filmed the Lord of The Rings here, Jesus it is breathtaking. (Who?, I think you are new here, but your country is amazing) Anyways on to the cars….

So in a country that seems to be overrun by sheep, (there are 44 million sheep and 4 million people.), I truly didn’t know what to expect. I must say I was completely shocked. I flew into Christchurch (I only drove around the Southern Island) the first thing I noticed was that everyone and their brother drove a “ricer”. The reason for this became apparent very soon. New Zealand does not have any real natural fossil fuels to match the amount of petrol demanded by the public. They import almost all of their fuel, this is turn drives the price up very high. When I was there, Diesel averaged about $.82 a Liter, Petrol about $1.18 / L.
So to give you an idea of the prices they are paying, I will convert the numbers to something Americans can relate to, US Dollars and Gallons. The conversion for New Zealand to US currency is .73ish that makes the gas about:

NZ (diesel) .82
US conversion: about $.60

NZ (Pertol) 1.18
US Conversion: about $.87

Now one Liter is about .264 US Gal. so the reciprocal is 3.785L to 1 Gal.
3.785 x .87 = $3.293 US/ Gal

So right now in Iowa, gas is about $1.82, about half as much. This is one of the reasons that most cars in NZ are diesel. It is cheaper for them to operate and they do not face many of the problems that cooler climates add to diesel engines. So with all this in mind, after some thought it really did not surprise me to see all these “ricers” running around with huge coffee cans for exhaust tailpipes…. I guess. It seems like everyone and their brother has some car that they have spent a lot of time and money on to fix. While driving, it was hard to take pictures but they were everywhere. In the town of Dunedin alone I counted 23 Nissan Skylines from 1988 to present running around. DSMer, and you Importluva to name a few people who would just be in heaven down here. It seemed like everywhere I drove kids were driving cars that are rare in the states. Many imports are easier to come by down in NZ and the parts are much easier and plentiful to get. In Dunedin and Intercargill there were probably a 100 stores specializing in import tuning, selling anything from body kits, intakes, alloy wheels, to turbo chargers and nitrous. I guess what really got me was the time and effort these people would take into turning the oldest POS into a pimp my ride special. I will say that in the major cities that was usually the case, however, in a land of 4 million people and 44 million sheep, the average Joe outside of the city areas was a different story.

(Part one I guess, getting bored of writing)

The following pictures taken with Canon G6 7.1 MegaPixel :drool:

The tiny town of Akaroa:
http://home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/Akarora.jpg

Lighthouse on Nugget Point:
http://home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/LightHouseonNuggetPoint.jpg

Lake Manaporui (Kepler Range in bkgrd):
home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/DoubtfulSound.jpg

Doubtful Sound:
http://home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/DoubtfulSound2.jpg

Doubtful Sound 2:
http://home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/DS3.jpg

Dolphin in Doubtful Sound:
http://home.ripway.com/2004-3/84054/NZ/Dolhpin.jpg

posted by  Voda48

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From the movie LotR, and these pics...it must be a really nice place to visit at least once!
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posted by  BavarianWheels

New Zealand would be a great place if it wasn't for the people :mrgreen:

Voda48 did you get up to the Gold Coast and see half the world's European youth walking around half naked?

posted by  Wally

I agree. Too many bloody aussies there. Send 'em home I reckon. :mrgreen:

posted by  Who?

The photo of Akaroa looks like its taken from the road that winds up above the town.

Its a nice cruise from Christchurch around to Akaroa. Some good winding climbs. We occasionally go for a cruise that way with the guys/gals in the club. Its quite impressive with a convoy of Skylines on a cruise like that :hi:

posted by  Who?

Don't you ever just take a walk-about? Why does everyone have to drive everywhere?

posted by  lectroid

Thats an Aussie thing :banghead:. Because we got decent cars :mrgreen:

posted by  Who?

I'm impressed Lectroid knows we go walkabout. You omitted the fact that kiwis have to drive or else they would be booked for drunken and disorderly in a public place.

posted by  Wally

Funny. You need to delete some sh## in you mail bin, if you want to receive anymore.

posted by  lectroid

Bet you have a big fat ass too. :laughing:

posted by  lectroid

:oops: too much fan mail and some marriage proposals. I think I have deleted them now.

posted by  Wally

My God, don't get married. I did that once. :oops:

posted by  lectroid

Too damn right!

posted by  Who?

I got arrested,went to jail for DUI,asleep in my recliner.Funny now, wasn't funny then, but I was drunk. Freakin state cop wouldn't even show up for court,3times. He sure did jerk my chain. But it was all my fault. :oops:

posted by  lectroid

Ya that was on top of the "scenic drive" going to Akaroa., The funny thing to is we had a camper driving on these roads in NZ. That one in perticulair we got sick of the road and need to eat at "Cest Le Vive" (highly recommend you eat there if you havent) so we took a gravel road going down. That was one hell of a fun ride in a camper, near 20 degree incline :screwy:

I don't know I liked the people there, granted that NZ depends on tourism to feed its economy but htey were all very nice to us. Do you guys live in ChristChurch?

posted by  Voda48

BTW everyone was appologising(sp?) for the weather. What was the deal huh?

posted by  Voda48

I don't think that that's a honest conversion, the american dollar is incredibly cheap right now, because of the recession, so that might not be right. Case in point though, gas over there is expensive.

posted by  Godlaus

Just curious, but what do you mean by "Honest" conversion??

posted by  Voda48

That it's not a fair representative of New Zealand gas. The american dollar is so cheap, some foreigner came over to the US, exchanged their euros and bought their christmas presents, then flew back. the Dollar is that cheap.

posted by  Godlaus

Yep. Sure do! :hi:

posted by  Who?

Just recently US$60 worth of software cost me NZ$95

posted by  Who?

Well that is no suprise to me. The dollar has always been getting kicked in th pants by the brit pound. The dollar has been fairly week for over a year that I dont even notice anymore.

posted by  Voda48

The pictures look beautiful..... :clap: Never new something like this existed in the world.

It amazing how God has made parts of the world so fruit full and green whiles other barren and arid (the middle east).

Interestingly enough I had a chance to hear a scholar speak and he said The middle east is more like reality while the other parts are just illusions.

This all just shows how this life so limited, while filled with illusions.

posted by  ZMan3000

That just makes me want to live an illusion, though. ignorance is bliss, and that's where I'd like to be.

posted by  Godlaus

That's one heck of a scholar. I hope you didn't have to fork over any of your parents hard earned cash to listen to him. :doh:

posted by  lectroid

I'm quite happy to live in this illusion, and the 'scholar' is welcome to his reality.

posted by  Who?

Did you hear about the scholar from Colorado(western state of the USA) :oops: ? He stated that all the people in the Trade Towers,on 9/11, were NAZI'S. They deserved what they got. :evil:

posted by  lectroid

No, he wasn't doing it to be racist, he was making a valid opinion point, read into it.

posted by  Godlaus

DID I MENTION RACE ? NO!!! Valid POINT/OPINION? And you are low life, perverted, scum sucking, bottom dweller, that preys on 11&12 year old boys. Hey,now that's an opinion/point. :ticking:

posted by  lectroid

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