Polynesian navigator Kupe is credited with discovering New Zealand around 1000 years ago, He sailed from his home in Hawaiki and into the Bay of Islands. No small feat in a canoe. He named the land Aotearoa. Land of the long white cloud. Not satisfied with just sailing 1000’s of miles, and discovering New Zealand, he sailed those miles back home to Hawaiki and told his pals how to get there.
His pals were not real interested in setting off on the ocean for a year’s long voyage in a canoe, so It took almost 400 years after Kupe, but with seven great canoes the Maori returned and began populating New Zealand.
Before Europeans ventured into the Pacific the Polynesians were traveling between Easter Island, Hawaii, and New Zealand. I am in awe of these ancient adventurers. They took off into the open ocean, without even a compass, traveled thousands of miles, and then returned home. Wow
Since New Zealand is a long way from everywhere and an exceptional long way from Alaska. We started early in the day with a 3-hour ride to Seattle on Alaska Airlines. Since it was a flight out of Alaska we didn’t have to pay a baggage fee and they checked the bags all the way to Auckland.
We switched carriers in Seattle to American and had to ride a American Eagle plane from Seattle to Los Angles.
Don’t ever ride American Eagle. The embalmer 100 jet was the most cramped commercial plane I have ever been on. It makes the worst ride in the sky the Boeing 737-800 seem spacious. It is such a crappy plane that once on the ground at LAX they wouldn’t even let it use one of the main terminals we landed, they said at a remote terminal and then we rode a shuttle bus across the ramps waiting for huge jets to cross in front of us before arriving at the actual international terminal at LAX.
The 787 Dreamliner was our ride for the 12-hour ride across the ocean, but despite the largeness of the liner American Airlines managed to cram just about as many seats as they possibly could to make the cattle section very crowded.
I will say that despite American being a domestic US carrier they did supply a pillow, and blanket. They even provided food more than once and a cocktail for no charge. Not bad service, the bags made it, and the next leg of my own personal Polynesian triangle will be on a ship…