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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Kiwi Hospitality and the Petone RFC...

My wife and I are staying at a Bed and Breakfast in Lower Hut, near Wellington, New Zealand.

During our short time here in New Zealand, we have both been blown away at what wonderful hosts the Kiwis have been. On Tuesday, any time my wife and I stopped to check our map, there was a helpful Kiwi asking if they could help us out. It is very apparent that the good people of New Zealand are happy that people from far and wide have come to their country to take in this orgy of rugby known as the Rugby World Cup.

As luck would have it, I noticed that the World Masters Rugby Group on Yahoo groups had an invitation from Wayne Smith of the Petone RFC for rugby players and fans to come to their club house to watch Rugby World Cup matches on their cinema sized screen, share friendship and have some beers-well, roughly in that order.

I told my wife about the hosting, and she was fine with checking it out.

I was given a tour of the facility by a club member, where I discovered that the club has an entire museum, which contained an impressive number of pictures of club members who would wear-or are wearing- the iconic All Black Jersey, as well as a treasure trove of memorabilia...

One team photo of a championship teams from the turn of the 20th century was one with a four-legged member of the club at the lower part of the picture.

My wife and I had a great time with the Petone RFC.  It was nice to share some Tui Beers and talk about rugby with the members and other guests-one of whom was from Uruguay visiting New Zealand for the Rugby World Cup. In speaking with a senior member of the club, Barry, he found out that where my wife and I are staying in Lower Hutt was literally only a block away from where he grew up. He was kind enough to give my wife and I a lift from the club to our Bed and Breakfast. It was a kind gesture which did not totally surprise me-this sport and this country are loaded with a ton of class people.

Thanks Petone. You guys are a credit to the sport and your country.

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