New Zealanders are thrill seekers, or at least they think people visiting them are. In Auckland we had the option of bungee jumping off of all sorts of urban structures, climbing all sorts of urban structures, zip lining, and being hung, in a harness, from the top of the big tower and dangled at the height of the observation deck so your friends can take your picture hanging there. And, of course, there is the America’s Cup yacht sailing that we did. But one of the strangest “E ticket” rides is being suspended from a 150 foot crane with 21 other people over the harbor, and in particular our cruise ship.
We went out on the back deck for dinner and sail out. We looked up and there were these people eating, looking down at us and waving. We ate, looked up, and waved back. As we backed out of the slip the crane raised them a little and we cleared, they were still waiving. I had no idea what this was about so I googled “People eating dinner, suspended by a giant crane, over a cruise ship in Auckland Harbor.” I got two hits immediately. The first was a news item from November 2014, “Crane topples into Auckland House” and the second was “Dinner in the Sky reaches Auckland’s Waterfront.” Apparently “Dinner in the Sky” is an “in” thing in several cities. It started in Brussels suspended over the Atomium and then went to Dubai, naturally. Now there are 50 such attractions. Twenty two diners sit in chairs that swivel 180 degrees while a chef and waiter in the center, both in harness, prepare the meal. The cost, $996 for dinner for two. If you can’t afford that, brunch is a mere $516 per couple. Those Brussels Sprouts better be pretty tasty.
That’s how we started our sail out at 8 PM. Sunset is around 8:30 and the sunset behind Auckland was absolutely beautiful. And, being back in higher latitudes, there was a lingering twilight. Check it out.
Before sail and after our visit to Devonport we walked a little along Queen Street and in the Britomart district.