Vikki & Emma travel blog

Auckland

volcano in the background

Why would you build a house at the bottom of a volcano?

Attempt at being arty

Auckland from the top of a volcano

The crater at the top of the volcano overlooking the city

pretty beach shot

This volcanic island sprung up only 600yrs ago...thats younger than Stratford!


Well im finally here...i say finally as the last 2 days have been a flipping nightmare...i am soooo fed up with bureaucratic red tape and australian lack of being able to do anything properly..honestly their rules over here are ridiculous.

ok so firstly, when i booked our tickets - there was a 12 hour gap between our flight back to Sydney adn flight out to Bali - i was concerned about this as even though we are only coming in transit back to Australia i knew that immigration would probably have some law to stop us doing it...so i got on the phone to immigration (for hours i might add) and they assured me that as we were going to be in Oz for under 72 hours we simply needed a 'transit visa' which we could get when we get to Auckland. You cant get it when you are in Australia.

So this morning i rock up at the Emirates check in desk with all my tickets to show that im on my route home, the form that im going to get signed when i get to Auckland and a very heavy backpack...

when i hand it over the woman simply says that i cant go to New Zealand as i havent got a valid visa to get back into Australia (our working holiday visas run out on wed)..so i get the transit form out my bag and show it her and say that i cant do anything til i get to auckland as it needs to be stamped there...so she wont let me on the flight!

im ushered over to the service desk where i explain my situation AGAIN...they phone New Zealand Immigration and they refuse to let me into the country...for god sake how am i supposed to get another visa if they wont let me out to get one? and its not like i want to come back into Australia as an illegal immigrant as i have my tickets all the way back to the UK right in front of them..i didnt know what the hell to do...so then one of the customer service ladies suggests i buy a return ticket that will get me back to Australia the day before my visa ends (tues) and then they will allow me into the NZ (stupid i know) and when i am safely through customs in NZ i can go to the Emirates desk and cancel the ticket...brilliant i thought..oh but there will be a $75 charge she tells me...at this point i dont care as they are about to close the flight and i need to get on it...so i say to her 'i can definately cancel this ticket when i get to NZ?' to which she assures me i can..so i get on the plane and worry myself silly the whole way that the NZ immigration are going to see through our little plan and i will be hauled back to UK..when i get to NZ the girl doesnt even ask to see my tickets, just wants to know what i have been up to in Sydney and if im enjoying myself..through clench teeth i told her i was loving every minute and went on through.

so i had wasted $280 for nothing, no one in NZ even cared about my visa

i go and find the emirates desk to get my refund..only to be told the ticket i have bought is a non refundable ticket..so i promptly burst into tears as im so tired (got up at 5), alone and fed up...the girl took pity on me and has made me an appointment for tomorrow mornign at Emirates HO in Auckland where i am going to park my bum until they agree to give me my money back.

and now im worried about Emma as she has to go through the same thing on Tues!

Oh and i managed to get my Tax Accountant fired yesterday..honestly someone up there has it in for me at the moment. My tax was 2 weeks overdue in being put in my account so i went back to ask where it was as i had phoned twice and been told it hadnt arrived. I get there and the accountant who dealt with me shows me into his office, then his mobile rings so he sits there on his mobile for 10 mins jabbering away in whatever asian language he speaks..then he comes back to me and says 'so who did your tax return?' errrm you did genius! he denies this says he has never seen me before, i firmly tell him that yes he did do it, i sat in this exact spot 3 weeks ago and he filed it. so he finally looks me up on the computer and goes off to find my file. he comes back,bumps into my chair and says 'nope we havent got your file' and sits down...so im like 'ok so where is my money?' 'Dunno' he says...thats it nothing else just 'dunno'..im getting angry by now so i ask him to look up on the computer and see if they have my correct bank details in case its gone into someone elses account, so he taps away for years and then says 'yes we have your bank details'...but are they mine idiot i wanted to yell? so then he looks again and says 'can i have your bank details please miss?' at this point i seriously thought someone was winding me up, then he decides to phone the tax office to find out where my money is - after 3 attempts at the number it starts ringing....then he falls asleep.

seriously this is not a dream, i am not joking or exaggerating..he fell asleep face first on the phone...i started looking round for hidden cameras as i was sure this was a set up..he finally lifts his head up rubbing it where he bashed it against the telephone and says 'sorry there is nothing i can do for you' so i get up, march out of the office and into the office next door FUMING and interupt the people in there and say to the guy behind the desk that he needs to come next door as my accountant has just fallen asleep on me..this guy turns out to be the owner of the business and marches in and starts shouting at the guy for being a filthy drunk..pulls open his desk drawer and find a bottle of whiskey..yanks him up from behind his desk and makes him apologise to me..then asks me to be a witness to this guy's behaviour..i merely nod..and then sacks him.

all i wanted was my money that was owed to me. The owner is so apologetic and tells me there wont be any charges for my tax return, he looks my account up on the system and the money has been back for 3 weeks..so he hunts around in the drunkard's desk and finds the cheque that was supposed to be sent out to me on 16th September. So now i have to wait another 3 days for it to clear!

Gosh why are things so complicated? I thought that i was coming up to the 'holiday' part of my trip? how wrong can a girl be

Im sure i will feel a lot better after a good night's sleep and once i have laid into the poor person at the Emirates desk in the morning..oh and its raining here too..bloody marvelous

so im off to get myself a herbal tea, and sit with my book and calm myself down

to be continued.......

Vik x x x



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