Wellington is a beautiful city right on the water.
It's quite hilly.
In the morning, we needed to get our car off the downtown streets or we'd have to start paying (too much!) for parking.
We browsed at the grocery store for awhile first.
They had all sorts of people straightening everything and it looked delectable.
We found some dog food in a chilled case . . . made of POSSUM!
Possum are an introduced species on New Zealand, and they eat Kiwi eggs and otherwise devastate indigenous wild creatures, so there are many strategies for getting rid of them.
This BIG bone was also for sale:
We found "Tui mato sauce" - the Tui is a native bird we saw a lot of while we were there!
And in the Asian section, there was a SLIMING herb!
I think they probably meant "slimming" . . .
The products have a great sense of humor, much like the Kiwi people
(New Zealanders call themselves "Kiwis").
I love that mosquitos are called "mozzies"!
New World in Wellington had a great selection of gluten-free breads and snacks:
I wanted to try making a wrap like the pita from Pita Pit with these wraps,
but I realized I might as well eat my rice, beans, and veggies from a bowl as long as I had the option.
There we are!
Then we were off to find a place to park near our next attraction:
The Weta Cave and Workshop!
On the way, we happened upon a Salvation Army,
where I found this book.
Here's the summary:
They were looking for "supa" (= super) team members.
We parked along the tsunami evacuation route!
Thankfully, they have planned and created a tsunami safe zone.
We walked to the Weta Cave - there was plenty of signage.
And we found it and it was on Weka Street (a weka is a cute little New Zealand bird)
There were three trolls in the garden!
We walked around the building and the block because we had arrived very early for our tour, and saw this wonderful car. I'd never heard of this model before, but it's adorable.
I have to say, I still prefer my Cube, since it's light and roomy and comfy, but this car is pretty cute!
This truck is pretty cute, too!
We saw a production company named after the Pukeko.
Then we decided to go into the Weta Shop.
They had some displays and lots of things to buy.
Bilbo's (and Frodo's) sword, Sting:
Suspicious, as always!
The company is named after a large insect called a Weta that is native
to New Zealand.
Eek! An uruk-hai!
Then we got to go in the worship and see some of the actual props and costumes worn in lots of different films that the Weta Workshop worked on. We weren't allowed to take pictures or video.
It was neat, though!
We walked back to the car on our way to the Te Papa museum.
Our guide told us that Weta was involved in an installation there in memorium for Gallipoli.
We thought we'd love to see it and we had the time.
Along the way, we saw this "library,"
which was actually an electrical box of some kind that had been art-ed up!
The installation was called The Scale Of Our War and the sculptures were about 30 feet high (I assume to demonstrate the larger-then-life heroism of the soldiers and aid workers). If you click on the link there, you can see close-up clear photos of the sculptures in detail. Amazing. These are made by the Weta Workshop we visited earlier in the day.
You can see in the picture below the size of an adult man (the one on the right) and the size of the sculptures.
On the way in, we walked past the food shop, and there were lovely gluten-free options!
I'm sure they had animal products, but they looked beautiful and I'm glad they were there for someone who needs them.
As we walked through each darkened circular room in the exhibit, the words of the person on whom the sculpture was based were spoken aloud and displayed in handwritten script on the walls.
We learned about the battle for Gallipoli and why New Zealand and Australia were involved there.
After each scenario, there were posters detailing how that person fared in the war.
There's my foot compared to his.
We left the exhibit moved and inspired and in tears.
We were happy to also be able to learn more about some of the creatures living in and around New Zealand.
Recently, a giant squid was found by a New Zeland fishing boat, and she is entombed under glass.
Weta also participated in a funny little exhibit for kids, teaching them about animatronics!
Enjoy this crazy baby!
Next time, it's the InterIslander Ferry - don't miss it!