After a delightful stay in Nelson we embarked on our journey to our next destination, Dunedin. We had a smooth flight out of Nelson on a rather small fifty seat plane. We all experienced something new as the plane did a “static” take off due to the plane being filled to capacity. After a short layover in Christchurch we were back in the air again and we touched down in Dunedin in the late afternoon.
It was a long day of travel and it was nice to relax in our hostel for an hour or so before heading out to the Dunedin botanical gardens for class. It was the perfect location for class as we were positioned halfway up a terrace overlooking a beautiful duck pond and the central part of the botanical gardens. But the unpredictable Dunedin weather quickly turned dreary as a rain storm came rushing in! We are no weatherman, but we made it in the nick of time to a nearby gazebo and finished up class as the rain began to subside.
The next day was one that had been looked forward to with much anticipation; we met with world renowned University of Otago professor Steve Jackson who has extensively studied sport sociology with an emphasis on New Zealand sport. We discussed identity, commercialization, and culture pertaining to New Zealand sport.
Following our informative talk with Professor Jackson, we went on a tour of Forsyth Barr Stadium, the only covered stadium in the entire country and it still maintains real grass turf. The entire group enjoyed the luxurious corporate suites.
We started our day off this morning with a visit to the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame. They had a great collection of awe inspiring exhibits of great athletes and their accomplishments. We completed a fun scavenger hunt of finding facts throughout the collection.
We then made our way over to Baldwin Street, which is the world’s steepest street. Over the 162 meter length stretch of road it climbs a height of 47.22 meters. Most of our group was brave enough to trek up to the top and enjoy the spectacular view. One daring motorcyclist kept going up and down the street, giving all of us watching an adrenaline rush.
Our class day concluded with a walk through the botanical gardens to watch the Otago Volts take on the Canterbury Wizards. It was the second day of a four day contest between the teams, both of which were wearing all white jerseys which caused some confusion amongst us!
We plan to spend our free afternoon surfing and touring a local brewery before we leave tomorrow morning on a long bus ride to the beautiful town of Te Anau.