Oh man. I would love to come along to this, but I'm not sure if I can take another few days off work in order to bus to Auckland and back
It's times like this I wish I still had a car
You'll have to deal with that issue if you win a ticket my friend.
Hopefully it does all work out for you.
I'm sure I could pull a few strings here or there and make magic happen
I might be able to help you out with a lift from and/or to Tauranga. Whakatane is a bit out of my way, though
See! Magic! Tauranga is naught but a bus ride or a quick hitch away
But seriously, I'm sure I could work out getting to Tauranga for a lift, or borrowing a car, or just catching a bus/flight