May 11, 2012...Point Chevalier

Today we will not be focusing our time on the bikes.  They are scheduled to be picked from Experience BMW by DB Schenker at 1pm, be weighed, measured and set to transport…they are in good hands.  Air would get the bikes to us by Friday next week, and Ocean would have them to us the first week in June.  When the finalized weights and props come in later today we'll make a decision! 

So what to do???…We have decided on either tramping the volcano or Kite Surfing lessons…We chose Kite Surfing!  We headed down to the corner cafe for a late brekky and caught the bus into the Britomart (downtown Aucklands transport hub) figured out the next bus to hop on to get over to Point Chevalier.  This is going to be totally sweet!…I'm really really excited!!! 

It took us about 75 minutes to get over to Point Chev on the bus, but it was all good and ended up being pretty darn cheap sight seeing tour!  We met up with Dean, a totally chill dude who sorted us with wetsuits, booties and a harness and introduced us to our instructor Bruce.  The instruction was going to be 3 hours long and the first hour would be on land learning how to layout and set up the equipment, pumping up the leading edge, kite handling on land, and the basics with the control bar. Bruce was super thorough and had us working on all areas of the assembly.  Next it was a matter of understanding how the grip and tension on the control bar controlled the kite.  OK…now we are ready for the water!  This first water lesson will be without the board, kinda disappointed.  I was wondering how this was going to work?  Our kite is 8m and it's an onshore blow around 15 - 20 knots…Woo Hoo Hoo.  The tide was quite a ways out as we awkwardly made our way into the warm bay until we were in waist deep water.  Just getting out there was wild…I sank so far down into the sandy silty earth, at some point over knee level that it felt like trying to walk through quicksand…Kev and I ate it a few times on the way out, I couldn't wipe the smile off my face this is an absolute blast!

Bruce hooked up and went through the basics on how to launch the kite off the water…of course he made it look super easy!  He explained how the kite reacts in the power zone, and how it reacts in the neutral zone…again, easy peasy hey??? "OK Cat, let's hook you up" he said…Let's do it!…Oh No…off I flew like a hot air balloon, "Cat Cat" Bruce and Kev are yelling "drop the control bar sister"…ha ha ha…Nah, just being silly, I know you we're all thinking that, so I ran with it, or flew with it…ha ha ha!  So as you can already tell we absolutely had no fun at all!  Once the kite is airborne it flies around 20m above, your grip is super light and gentle right to left pull controls the direction of the kite.  The power behind this bright sail is addicting, and the fact that it is in water, even today without the board, is bloody fantastic!  I was having some trouble keeping the kite up of any length of time, but, Kev nailed it!  Bruce kept taking us through the launching and landing of the kite, a running relaunch which was hilarious in this silty sandy bottom and keeping the kite at 10 or 2, for the next hour until we got it.  Next it was time to move onto figure eight flying and body dragging.  Bruce hooked me up and it all just synced, I was figure eighting 10 to 2 and being dragged with Bruce hanging on behind me toward the beach…Woo Hoo.  What a feeling, that was incredible!!  Ahh I hope the wind does not change and wipe the smile off my face!..Ohh I crack myself up!  This went on for the last hour of the lesson…Kev and I just loved the feeling of being pulled out of the water, kinda like the feeling of wake boarding under your own power.  Bruce ran through how to collect the kite on the water, wind up everything without getting it all knotted up and the total dismantle.  The sun was setting as we left the water…It was a purely SWEET day!  You and I know, that this will not be our only lesson, if we do not have time for another in New Zealand before we leave, we will follow through in Oz until we are flying solo!  Dean went out of his way and drove us back to Mission Bay, once again absolutely fabulous Kiwi hospitality!…Thanks :)

Oh yeah I almost forgot...we decided on Ocean Freight!