(Photograph: Miles Holden courtesy of New Zealand Tourism Board)

Believe a rustic the place a 3rd of families personal a ship. The place the largest political controversy is whether or not to switch the rustic’s flag (it appears too similar to Australia’s, is the issue). The place the immigration officer on the airport, as an alternative of grunting “Passport!” asks an incoming customer, “How used to be your flight?” after which thank you you for coming. Eye touch incorporated.

The place strolling down a slender sidewalk in Christ Church (a town that has noticed greater than its percentage of woe), a pedestrian thank you you for squeezing by way of. Now not gonna occur in my liked New York Town.

The place, on my first discuss with two decades in the past, an Air New Zealand flight attendant would not allow me stuff my raise-on bag within the overhead bin. “That is my task!” he introduced. What planet had I landed on?

On a up to date 4-day discuss with, I requested other folks why New Zealand appears to be this kind of satisfied, well mannered united states, but even so, in fact, the herbal good looks, temperate local weather, and Auckland’s Giapo Ice Cream and Gelato. And each and every time I requested I were given the similar solution: we’ve a filthy rich center elegance.

The very best paid government in New Zealand made a whopping $four million ultimate yr (that now not so princely sum went to the CEO of Air New Zealand). 4 million. In New Zealand greenbacks, through the best way, that is so much not up to U.S. greenbacks. That would not even rely as rate document cash for only a run-of-the-mill U.S. oligarch.

So the ratio of the absolute best paid worker to the typical salary is so much decrease in New Zealand than in the USA and in lots of different nations. I simply occur to assume that that kind of relative equality makes folks much less on facet, much less canine-consume-canine.

And almost definitely much less green with envy and grasping, too.

So while my cab motive force introduced me to the town from the airport and I requested him concerning the satisfied factor, in all probability he stated it highest: “I used to paintings in London. The fares may say hurry up! Pass quicker or I’m going to omit my flight. Right here in Auckland, my ultimate fare on the finish of the go back and forth stated, ‘Thanks such a lot for turning in us competently and in just right time.’ I might by no means need to are living any place else.”

As a trip author, I additionally cited that even if there are a few at ease inns right here, similar to The George in Christ Church (shout out to George Undergo!), you will not in finding any 4 Seasons, Ritz Carltons, Amans or different luxurious chains. Why? Too fancy for this center elegance u . s ..

Which brings me to Bernie Sanders. If he have been president or top minister of New Zealand, he should not have a soapbox to face on. There is not any billionaire elegance right here. There is slightly even a millionaire elegance. Only a very massive center elegance playing weekends on their boats and climbing in one of the crucial so much stunning surroundings on the earth.

Come talk over with. It is going to make you satisfied.

George Hobica is a member of the Society of American Commute Writers. @GeorgeHobica

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