Before I begin, if you don’t know what warmshowers.org is, it is a website much like couchsurfing but for bicycle tourers. Fellow cyclists all around the open up their homes to host other cyclists.
So this is what happened in my first 24 hours in New Zealand. My ex-girlfriend and I were heading over to our warmshowers hosts, a lovely Japanese and English couple living in Auckland. Because they were going to be at work while we arrived in Auckland, they left the house key hidden for us to find it.
We arrived at their home around 1:00 pm on our bikes and their message said to look under their recycling bin for a key in their backyard so that is exactly what we did but there was nothing. Let me emphasize that we were super tired and jetlagged.
We were very confused, the street number that they gave us said 150 but there wasn’t any key under their blue recycling bin. We thought they might have forgotten to place it there so we re-read their email and messaged them. We then wandered over to 150A, which also matched the description in the email so we looked under the recycling bin. There it was, a shiny metal house key. Both of us wandered into the house and we saw a small ugly dog, which was interesting because they never mentioned a dog. So I sent a text message to the host saying “We made it to your house, hope it’s the right one. Do you have a dog? Haha.” They responded saying “glad you made it” but never denied having a dog.
We proceeded to make ourselves comfortable. We left our bikes and panniers at the house and went out for lunch. When we returned from exploring the town, the dog was gone. Which was very confusing because our hosts said they would arrive after 6:00 pm. The dog can’t just disappear. After we both looked for the dog, we just said fuck it, lets go to sleep. After napping for a few minutes, my ex shouted, “we got to get out of here,” convinced that this was the wrong house. I was very hesitant about it at first but gave up quickly trying to convince her this was correct house. The signs were all there; the Narcotics Anonymous books, the missing dog and smell of cigarettes everywhere. The inside of the house doesn’t match the description of a couple that has cycled throughout Asia for a year but we both ignored all of these blatant signs.
We decided to backtrack to house 150 and we looked around the backyard. Under a small black cart that had one beer bottle was the house key. If you didn’t figure it out by now, we accidentally broken and entered a random persons house on our first day in New Zealand, HAHA. I can’t imagine what the poor girl (we looked in their room) felt walking into her home with random people’s stuff on the floor and bikes locked in her front yard.
I left a note saying how terribly sorry we were and explaining the situation. Thankfully we weren’t reported, had the owner complained we would have been screwed.
Oh the shit you get into while traveling, haha…