Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Adventures of Miles the United Polaris Bear

I'm on vacation and thought I'd have some fun with a stuffed bear I got when I flew in United's new business class service, called Polaris.  The service itself was amazing and the crew was fantastic. I couldn't have asked for a better 15+ hr flight.  That said, I already let the crew know and even emailed the 1K team to have them pass on the kudos so they get some recognition.

With the help of Blake Krone from Twitter, the bear has been dubbed Miles and these are his adventures in Sydney, New Zealand and who knows where else.

Miles enjoyed the view from our hotel, The Shangri-La Sydney overlooking the Opera House.

Miles also enjoyed some "Welcome" chocolates - so very good - or so I heard since he ate them all.

The next day we started with breakfast and Miles had the Aussie Breakfast at Pancakes on the Rocks.

It started raining while we ate. We walked around the harbour bridge and took some refuge under it during the heavy stuff.

Miles wanted to see some fish so we headed to Sydney Sea Life.

After the excitement of sharks, jellies and others, Miles needed to relax with some Double Coat Tim Tams.

We'll see how connectivity on the cruise works an hope to keep updating this with Miles' adventures!

Miles enjoyed leaving Sydney and the spectacular views of opera house an downtown Sydney.

On the ship, Miles enjoys watching Minions

Miles also loves the chocolate covered strawberries.
Being the well traveled bear, Miles also knows how to get dressed up for formal night on a cruise.

Stay tuned for more Miles!

4/3/17 - Update

Miles enjoyed sailing into Auckland. 

Where he learned a bit more about Maori 
Then he went for a walk in the bush and saw Karekare Falls

Sat in some trees in the bush

Miles also walked a small bit of the Hillary Track

Miles also learned a bit about Kauri trees. Amazing - this stump is from one that is over 1,000 years old!

He then made his way to Piha beach and loved the black sand.

We will see what wonders tomorrow brings for Miles as he visits Tauranga, NZ!

4/4/17 Update

Miles likes Tauronga even with all of the rain.

He checked out the California Sequoia trees at Rainbow Springs

Miles then went for a cruise on Lake Rototura.  

He didn't let the rain slow him down.

Miles ended his day in Wai-O-Tapu checking out the sulfur pits, mud volcanoes and geothermal springs.

4/6/17 Update

Miles arrived in Wellington on a rainy day

The big event for the day was a visit to Weta Workshop, where Lord of the Rings special effects, costumes and more were filmed.

Miles met Gandalf

Miles also hung out with Gollum

He was scared of Azog the Defiler but knew we would keep him safe.

Miles loved posing with the Dwarf King statue

Miles then visited Victoria Peak where some scenes from Lord of the Rings were filmed.

After all of that, Miles was hungry and had some cravings for delicious Indian food. He likes hot and spicy Vindaloo!

Once he was full of vindaloo, Miles went Geocaching for the first time where he found his the cache for Paddy the Wanderer.  Very cool!

Miles was dragging after a busy day so went back to the ship where he studied the map of Middle Earth.

4/8/17 Update

Miles visited Dunedin, NZ and visited Nature's Wonders on the Otago peninsula where he saw some seals

Miles rode in an Argo but wasn't big enough to reach the controls.

He also saw some old WWII bunkers that were built for gun placements.

After all of that excitement he enjoyed some tea and milk in the cafe.

Miles saw some eucalyptus trees as well, but no koalas.

The next stop was to visit Dunedin proper. Miles visited Unity Park with a great view of the city and harbor and a bust of Admiral Bird who launched his Antarctica expeditions from Dunedin.

Dunedin also has a Cadbury factory (for now - it is moving to Melbourne AUS soon) and Miles took the tour there and learned about Cadbury crumb and how chocolate is made. He also learned about the Dunedin Jaffa Race.

Miles couldn't decide on a favorite flavor of chocolate.

Finally, Miles ate a treat of McDonald's (Maccas) Cadbury McFlurry, something he can't get back home in the USA.

On the way back to the cruise ship, Miles saw Terminus, which inspired him to move faster for fear of meeting the Terminus people from Walking Dead.

4/9/17 Update
Miles greeted the morning on the west coast of New Zealand with a smile.

Miles did some scenic cruising through Fjordlands National Park and particularly loved Milford Sound. 

4/12/17 Update
Back home in the USA, Miles stopped by the United Polaris lounge in Chicago O'Hare airport and thought it was amazing!

This concludes Miles' adventures so far.  We'll see if Miles gets to enjoy any future trips.

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