Dispatches From the Front: Days 5, 6, 7 and Speights.

This is part 3 of a 5-part series. See also: part 1, part 2, part 4, and part 5.

Oops, I meant “eight”. Things are starting to blend together a bit for your favorite tourists. The rain has been coming down in waves but it has dawned clear for now. It’s a pretty big day for the USA Eagles as they have a must win game vs. our cold war nemesis Russia at 2:30 pm in New Plymouth. There are rumours that everyone from Prime Minister Lenin uh.. Putin, sorry, to Miss Russia will be there from the opposing side. I’m sure if Ms. Clinton shows up she can backrow for a half for us.

Our tour guide, Murray East, has put on a grand show. We stopped at a private rugby museum in Hamilton two days ago. Our host has patiently (and ladies take note) and with the support of his wife built an amazing archive of rugby memorabilia. Signed jerseys and match programs, as well as pictures and videos of legends like Colin Meads as well as team photos dating back to 1902. For a true rugby fan, it rivals any room in the Smithsonian.

A short stop in Lake Taupo netted a few more adventurous travellers the chance to bungee jump into the Waikato River. I was able to participate this time, as I missed the chance in 2005. I think I actually beat my lunch to the bottom. It was an awesome plunge though.

Even on the nights where there isn’t much going on, we’ve managed to entertain ourselves. There was even a Jimmy Shimmy sighting in Hamilton, as well as some sort of flaming shots @3am that we shall never speak of again. There is also a “Grow a beard like Ben Smith” contest, with yours truly currently in the lead.

We also took in some luge racing in Rotorua, and are currently enjoying some hot springs and “fizzy drinks” at KiwiPaca. After the USA match, we’ll be going back to New Plymouth for our second match vs. New Plymouth Old Boys RFC.

Hope all is well back home. We’re working on trying to get some photos up, so check back later for some links.

Best wishes all,
Prince Jim

Jim Harings
Jim Harings
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