Last night I went to Carisbrook to watch the All Blacks vs Wales rugby game. The night held particular significance because it was the last international game to be held at Carisbrook. From next year, all rugby games will be held at the new Forsyth Barr stadium which is just being built.
The Terrace experience
One of the special things about Carisbrook is the section called the Terrace which is the cheaper place to go and stand and watch the game. Invariably the Terrace is populated with noisy, drunk students which adds to a fantastic atmosphere. There's usually plenty of girls there, preening and posturing for the boys...after all, what place could be better for picking a likely lad for the evening.
To my mind there's no better place to watch an international rugby game than the Terrace. Admittedly, things get a bit wild and feral at times, but that all adds to the experience. I love watching the people...loving their rugby, shouting abuse at the referee, chatting up the girl next door. And, the haka (which I think is so often over done at events) is spine chilling.
The new stadium
The new stadium is well on its way to being built - the photo above was taken back in April. It will be open next year in time for the rugby World Cup games that will be held down here in Dunedin.
Goodbye to Carisbrook
Last night Carisbrook really turned things on for us. The weather was prefect for watching rugby - a tad chilled but the warmth of the occasion (and a few glasses of wine) sustained us. The Mexican waves added a degree of danger that gave us a thrill. And the All Blacks won a great game of rugby.
I shall really miss the Terrace and believe the new stadium will lack the unique atmosphere that the Terrace brings to a rugby game. However, the new stadium will have a roof which means we will all keep warm and dry on those terrible wet Dunedin days, when we would otherwise get soaked and go down with pneumonia if we'd been at Carisbrook.