A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about rugby

Go The All Blacks!

Learning the sport of rugby with world champ fans

Being in NZ for rugby world cup (RWC) has been a lot of fun, and has really enlightened us to a sport that we knew little to nothing about. We have been trying for the past three days to get an All Blacks flag for our campervan, but everywhere is sold out. People walk the streets bouncing rugby balls like we would a basketball and parks are alley ways are filled with kids playing touch rugby like you’d see soccer being played in South America. The country’s support for the national team is amazing, almost every car and house has at least one All Blacks flag waving, and you can see the All Blacks logo and slogan on anything from beer bottle tops in the city to paint on bales of hay in the country. Here is a photo of “go the ABs” on rocks at the beach… who cares about drawing a heart around your initials when there is rugby at stake!
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Restaurants, supermarkets and advertisements all have “All Blacks” specials and commercials. For example, this town was famous for its carrots and painted their huge orange carrot statue black for the RWC in support and as an ad for a painting company.
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For the final game we attended the Roturua City “Fan Zone” which was held in an event stadium suitable for concerts and major sports games. The stadium had a ton of people all dressed in black ready to support their team on a big screen. It was fun to learn game details with the locals who were eager to explain the rules. When the whistle blew at the end of the game signifying a victory, we were surprised with indoor fireworks and confetti. For as long as we have been here, the radio talk has been all about rugby and it continues with thoughts on how the tourist economy will be after RWC, and of course the endless game analysis.
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Posted by Robin-and-Kevin 15:14 Archived in New Zealand Tagged rugby Comments (0)

Auckland

Setting foot into New Zealand

We left the heat of Fiji and I am pretty sure Robin’s words were something along the lines of “perhaps we should follow winter instead, I don’t like the heat and humidity.” Well, when we stepped off the plane in Auckland, Robin’s wish came true. Instead of the 90 degree sticky weather, it was now 61 degrees and POURING with rain.

Luckily, the weather cleared up quickly and next day we were able to rent bikes and explore the city on the wrong side of the rode, which made things even more exciting.
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Among the sites we explored were Eden Park, the world cup rugby stadium and the William Webb Ellis Cup, just three days prior to the final match.
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After a night in a hostel with the world’s loudest snoring people we decided that for the second and final night we should run ourselves to the ground and get pissed with a branch of Auckland Hash House Harriers. Totally loved it, and many thanks to Drag Queen for the hospitality.

So far the people in NZ are EXTREMELY nice. If you pull out a map or look lost, it takes about 12 seconds before a Kiwi asks if you need help, for example, were on a bus that stopped at a stop with two confused girls who just missed their bus. The driver said “jump on and I will catch your bus and you can transfer to it.” And that is just what he did. He radioed the bus in front to tell the bus that he had two passengers for him, and in 5 minutes, the two girls were on the right bus. It is amazing how welcoming the country is to foreigners. So far most people think we are from Canada and one surprised English bloke from London said we had surprisingly gentle accents for Americans, like omg!?

Posted by Robin-and-Kevin 14:50 Archived in New Zealand Tagged bike rugby Comments (1)

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