I went out for a great night out to see Dylan Moran as part of the Auckland Comedy Festival with FLYNGAL from couchsurfing.com – Selina, she does have a real name. Anyway, it was my first couchsurfing hook up. No couch, but always great to hook up with a local in a big city – once you’ve been to a few they all kinda seem the same and you really need to hook up with someone who knows the sneaky wee spots the tourist ‘punters’ don’t normally get to – or at least some of them.
First stop was Rakinos in Auckland. A bar that to be honest could have been in any city, but it was far better being there than the average ‘get drunk, get sh…ed’ backpackers bar (a generalisation if ever there was one). But you don’t get Feijoa wine in every city or bar (like that Kirsty in ‘Wellytron’?). I didn’t buy any but I tried it. Not bad, if not a bit sickly (but that didn’t stop me stocking up on some on my travels). I opted for my first Stella Artois for a while.
The comedy? Not bad, not brilliant, but it got funnier as he got more risky. Just before he finished. At $50 it was almost the same price you’d pay in the UK which is a tad pricey for here, but it’s always good to see a comedian in a different country. And he mentioned Scotland, and not in a bad light, so he got my vote (I never knew he lived there).
And on it was to the next stop. Shanghai Lil’s. Now we’re talking. As we walked past, Selina wasn’t convinced it was the right bar as people were dancing to old style big band type music. It was the right bar. Quirky, full or old hideous, but pleasing at the same time, ornamental…..ornaments. From chandaliers to sofas, to big marble type elephant pot stands. Like a very ‘upmarket’ version of The Pond in Edinburgh if there could ever be one. The crowd were mixed to say the least from cool youngsters (like myself!?!) to a group of older women dressed in classy dresses, just out for a meal and a good night. The manager (I’m guessing) made the place. I’m sure I could have got my residency through him, but rather than as a skilled migrant, it would have had to be through a same sex marriage. After discovering we weren’t ‘together’ he complimented me on my looks, and eventually I couldn’t escape going up to dance with him, but I fear my lovely Earth Sea and Sky trousers, and my Boom Boom Music Cambodia clothes weren’t a match for his old school red velour dinner jacket.
A quality pub, off the beaten track, and drinking pints of ‘Dave’s’ draft lager (after a compulsory Feijoa vodka, Apple and Lychee juice cocktail) until about 0230.