Saturday, March 13, 2010

North Island Day 15

What a beautiful day to head into Auckland and the Sky Tower (the tallest man made structure in New Zealand).
Hannah's first ever time on an escalator (at almost 2 years old). Something children in Johannesburg or Pretoria would just grow up with as part of life.
Then up the lift to the Main Observation Level at 185 meters. The lift travels at 18kph (which does not sound very fast but when you are in a lift it is supa fast), making the trip in just 40 seconds. At a normal pace it would take someone about 24 minutes to climb the 1,029 steps to this level.
This photo is on the glass section in the floor of the lift. The doors of the lift are also glass. You can see Brendon in the reflection and he was making sure he did not look out the doors or down at the floor at all.
Then on the Observation deck they have sections of glass in the floor for you to walk over. It was so funny to watch everyone nervously take their first step.
Ruth was probably the bravest. You can see that Rachel and Hannah still wanted to keep a hand on the side. Brendon kept far away and although I got closer it was only for so long that my stomach could handle it and eventually called the girls away from the glass. I made sure Hannah did not lean on the windows either. Amazing what thoughts can go through our heads as adults. The joys of being a child. :-)
It was great to see all the boats in the harbour. And although that bridge looks tiny from here it is actually incredibly high. The girls enjoyed riding over it yesterday and this morning, so it was great to see it from this perspective.
Views of up to 80 kilometres in every direction. It was really beautiful and we were so thankful for such a beautifully clear morning.
Then we headed up to the Sky Deck which is 220 meters high. Again I hated the idea of the girls leaning on the glass so we all ended up sitting on the floor looking over the edge. Brendon even managed at one stage on his stomach to peep over.
From here we could look down to the Sky Walk platform. You can see there is a platform that goes around the Tower that you can walk on (obviously well strapped). It's just a platform with no sides. At one point the man stood right on the edge with his hands wide open. It must be quite an experience.
Then we got to see a lady get ready for the Sky Jump. We had seen a couple of people from the Observation Level which is just below them. The jump off that platform and are stopped outside the Observation Deck so friends and family can take photos of them. And then they just drop. Ruth thought it looked like great fun and Brendon said she can go on it when she is an adult.
Well done Brendon.
He was not all that keen on this adventure but was a great example to Rachel of trying something new and "facing challenges" (as they always say in Brownies).
Before the lift started I quickly took this photo looking down. Where you see the light is where we get to see out the glass doors as we go down. It really is incredibly fast.
We even did the touristy thing and bought the photo that they took of us before we went up. It really was a wonderful opportunity and we were all very glad we went.

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