You don’t have to love cars to be a valet at Britomart Car Park, but it sure helps.

 

Are you from Auckland? No, I’m originally from Bangalore in India, but I live here and think of myself as a Kiwi.

How do you get to Britomart? I drive in most days, or I take the bus or ride my motorbike in.

Do you have a carpark here then? All the staff have their own carparks upstairs.

That’s a real perk of the job, isn’t it? Oh yah. Central Auckland parking, yes!

What do you do here? I’m a car valet driver. We park people’s cars, and drop them off to them.

Have you ever crashed one? No! I’ve got a clean record. I’m proud of that!

How did you get into it? I do this thing called Air Cadets. And one of my good friends from there was working here.

Air Cadets? Yes. I’m studying how to be a pilot. I’m about 180 hours into it.

How many hours do you need before you can fly? 50! So I can already fly by myself. Flying is more of a relaxing sport for me. People have their way of venting. Flying is that for me. But I decided I wanted to take it one step further and go into the Air Force. I got in. I just have one more test to complete before I’m accepted.

Whoa. Do you take passengers? Yes I can, I just choose not to because all of my friends are muppets. Though we did do a flight from North Shore Aero Club to Queenstown and then to Stewart Island and then came back up. That was very cool.

What’s your favourite hidden Auckland City spot? There’s a Korean place called Hansik on Drake Street and next to it there’s a really cool bar called The Oak Room. Those two are top-tier.

Have you ever done anything heroic? Well, during cadets there was this lady crossing the road, she was deaf and had some very high-powered glasses on so she was pretty much blind as well. Her glasses fell down and she went to pick them up, and this ambulance came flying around a blind corner and I full-on spear grabbed her. Her glasses hooked onto my shoe and my foot got run over by the ambulance!

What do you enjoy about working here? I feel like it’s the people here that make it. We have a good time together. Oh, and I’m a big fan of Camaros and the other day I got to park one. I was so excited.

Did the concierge know that you like them that much? No.

Be funny if they knew and deliberately gave the keys to someone else. That’s why I don’t tell them this kind of stuff!

Interview and photograph by Florence Noble