Saturday, August 9, 2014

The run-der down under

Couldn't post while in New Zealand because Google thoughtfully blocked me from signing in from an address outside the US, reading it as a security violation.

But while there, I had two runs I wanted to mention.  30 hours and 3 connections brings you to Wellington, the coolest little capital in the world.  200,000 people and truly the windy city putting Chicago to shame.  65 mph winds and torrential rains (just like when I was there 19 years ago).  The one day that was less windy and no rain was fine for a run before I appeared for my lunch talk at the New Zealand Commerce Commission.  This was my first run after my trip and fall on the streets of the Chicago leavened with stiffness from my day plus of traveling.  So I took it easy for a 4 miler along the Wellington harbor.  Passed the Museum of New Zealand, some restaurants, a theater complex, a play ground some tourist plaques and a cool statue of a guy appearing to dive into the water.  I turned around at the road that led up into the hills of Roseneath neighborhood where I had dined with the chair of the Commerce Commission the night before. Less windy for this purpose means only 25 mile gusts.

The rest of the time in Wellington was work with talks at the Commerce Commission and keynoting the annual Competition Law and Policy Institute.  Smart sophisticated people knowledgeable about both their own systems plus ours (and others).  2 day annual conference focusing on competition law and policy with some excellent presentations on consumer protection, trade and competition, and a reflection of the 25 years that the Institute has been meeting.

Play time meant a one hour flight the next day to Queenstown.  Much middle earth kitsch at the Wellington airport including a giant Gollem and a large Gandalf on a very large eagle.  Queenstown is where the rest of New Zealanders go to play.  Kind of a Kiwi Vail.  Nice downtown, good restaurants, some upscale shopping and every outdoor activity you can imagine.  weather is sunny and 45.  After check in and lunch in town, I change into my cool weather running gear and head out for the 13 miler that my clumsiness interrupted back in Chicago.

Head through hills down to the long lake (as in the Long Lake in the Hobbit movie) through a nice public garden.  There is a running path going left but not right so I go left.  Its the Queenstown that heads out along the lake to the airport in Frankton and then a right turn following the water to a two way one lane bridge and a path that appears to continue roughly forever.  I turned around at the far end of the bridge at the edge of the Hilton resort and reversed course getting lost in the public garden in town and ending up back in town rather than on the street to my hotel.  A cold drink later and a walk up the hill and I was back for a nap, a nice dinner in town, and the next day skiing at a place aptly named The Remarkeables.

Here are some pictures roughly in the order I ran.  Not sure why they are sidewise. Better ones are on Instagram properly aligned.


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