Friday, December 3, 2010

Amazing Auckland

Hey all,

I'm a little behind so I wanted to share with you some things we have done in Auckland in the last bit.

1. Kelly Tarlton Aquarium
Now we are not usually aquarium/nature park/interpretive center people but we needed to get out of the house and the guidebook highly recommended this aquarium. The best part was definitely seeing the live penguins. There were a whole bunch. There were also a bunch of chicks too which was cool.

straight out of National Geographic

The sting ray and other ocean animals were neat as well, but the aquarium was not as great as we expected.

2. U2
U2 definitely met & exceeded expectations. Fantastic! If you can go when they are in Edmonton, you may see us, because we would love to go again. We got our tickets not too long before we left, so we were in the standing zone. That was cool, but got a bit old. I guess it's us getting old, we like to sit!
Life list item, right here!

They had a huge stage setup with the coolest video screen I have ever seen. It was neat too because they layered other images under the concert image. Hard to describe the set up but amazing. We heard that it takes 250 people to set-up/take down the stage, and that they have 3 different ones because they can't get it to new locations fast enough. I would love to know how they plan all the transport and everything for all of that, so many details.

It was neat to go to an outdoor concert, and the weather was so nice.
Just to show you the screen - it expanded and then came back together lower down, if that makes sense

U2 played most of our favorite songs. I loved "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" the most. It was their first more mellow song after some more rocking ones and it was just beautiful. They did a nice memorial for the miners (that's a link in case you haven't been following), which was a sad but nice moment. We had hoped all along that they would make it out okay, and though it was getting doubtful, it still makes me tear up to think of when we heard there was no hope. Andrew loved "Where the Streets have No Name" which was also fantastic, although the person in front of us started talking on his phone in the middle. Arg, concerts make me a grumpy person when dealing with others. All in all, the whole band was fantastic and put on such a good show. Bono was so Bono-ish, I just loved it and we had a really good time. Worth the sore feet.
Eeeeee! Best picture yet! We are pretty happy with our trusty camera

Oh, I should mention Jay-Z opened for U2, why I do not know. He was okay, not bad, but could have been better. I think the best bits of his songs are when other people sing, but it's not bad for getting your groove on, but again, could have done that better, just never seemed to quite catch the crowd. Much funner when you know the songs too. Best part: seeing Beyonce!! in a box dancing along. I heard the people next to us talking about her, and then we just scoped her out.

Clearly that HAS to be Beyonce

Jay-Z = okay but I love Empire State of Mind

3. Santa Parade
This was a new expereince, going to a warm weather Santa Parade. They put on quite a show, but it was so hot, we didn't stay til the end and missed Santa. Oh well. The big balloons were my favorite, absolutely massive, and marching bands sounded good, but they all went to percussion as soon as they got to us. A fun time and probably the only time we will get a sun burn at a Santa Parade!
a giant Kiwi balloon

That's what we have been up to in our new home town. I'll share about our trip to Wellington, the capital city soon. I also want to put up a post about what it's like to actually live here, so lots to look forward to on this place.


Anonymous said...

Hi Geralis and Andrew,
Thanks for the update - nice to "hear" from you!
You wondered about U2 getting all their stuff there - I read somewhere they arrived with 5 or 7 jets and 55 trucks. Seems crazy!
Take good care,

Ger said...

Wow, that is a lot! I believe it though, it can't be easy to put together a stage like that. They really don't need all that though, I'm sure they'd put on a great show without it. It seems kind of ridiculous!