November 12th, 2008 – by: Rubbertoe
Auckland is a great city but I knew that if I stayed any longer I would have blown my entire budget on beer, women and rock ‘n roll… ok, maybe just on booze and parking tickets! It is hard not to get involved when everyone is having fun, and you keep reminding your self that after all you are on holiday, so if you want to stop spending there’s no choice other than to leave, run, run Forest! So I did. Betsy was almost ready to go and my booking with Nomads finished on Wednesday, so in the morning I packed up everything, jumped in the car and turned the key. ‘Sing Betsy, sign me a song’… nothing… no wrum wrum, not a single sound, what? Oh noooooooooo, arghhh!! It took five of six turns to get her going and it happened all morning.
I couldn’t possibly go road tripping with this problem, so I searched the internet for a mechanic and shortly after I took her into Mitsi Parts.
My little darling in the operating theatre
The starter motor had to be replaced. Great, just a week old and Betsy was already giving me problems, this was going to be a rocky relationship… I paid the owner $150 and thanked him for fixing her up so quickly, mind you he wasn’t exactly busy, which is never a good sign. It was too late to start my journey north, so I drove to Devonport on the northern shore just opposite Auckland city and spent the night there, my first night in the car.
I slept like a rock.
Oh man, the first decent night in two weeks. It’s funny, whenever I tell someone that I am sleeping in my car, I generally get a compassionate look followed by a sympathetic smile as if they want to tell me ‘can’t afford a hostel? You poor bugger’. Well actually, if you find a quite spot, sleeping in the car is fantastic! No stinky and messy dorm rooms; no snoring; no farting; no trying to sleep with the light on because someone else is still reading at 2am; no waking up at 3am to a loud metallic clang, the sound you hear when the last piss-artist comes in and bangs his coconut on the top bunk bed trying to get into bed; no waking up at 4am because his mate is still outside and has lost the code to get in, so he thoughtfully rings his mobile; and my favourite, no waking up at 5am when those who are catching the early bus can’t help overturning their rucksack inside out because they have lost their very precious $2 flashlight, and when they find it they flash it in your eye with no fail… hey, shove it up your bottom mate!! See if you can find in your self some consideration for those who are still sleeping! Oh, and somewhere between 6am and 7am, the drunken guy always gets up to vomit! I love sleeping in hostel, really! Not to mention that you can have all this fun for just $25, which I could alternatively spend on a fat breakfast and dinner if I slept in my car.
Ackland CBD from Devonport
Do I have a point?
Betsy with her backpack, the back seats.
Sleeping in Devonport I discovered an interesting fact. When I went to sleep the car park was completely empty. I couldn’t understand why there were so many spaces available for such a tiny district town, well over a hundred! Next morning, all spaces were full and there were still lots of desperate drivers looking for a space, I was asked 5 times when I was leaving. The reason is simple; you can park all day for free and take the ferry right to the centre of the CBD for just $3. Wish I knew this when I bought my car, it would have saved me a few dollars.