Chris Key was taking a breather after work this afternoon when he saw U2's Bono exiting a Britomart bar.

"Suddenly he just walks out with the purple glasses on and I was like 'no freaking way'".

The iconic frontman was happy to have a selfie with Key, initially wrapping an arm around him.

"…Then he was like, 'nah f*** that and put his arms around my neck, like he was about to bite my head off," Key said.


Their encounter only lasted a few minutes before Bono was whisked away in a discreet black van, but Key, a plasterer, said it didn't feel like it.

"It felt like a lifetime for me. I was just like shaking after, I couldn't believe it"

"You think people like that wouldn't have time for people like me. I'd been working hard all day, plaster all over me and he took time out (for me)."

While he won't be at the upcoming Joshua Tree concerts at Mount Smart Stadium, Key says he is a "massive fan," with "One" from the Achtung Baby album being his favourite hit.

Even a minor fender-bender on the drive home couldn't dull the 49-year-old's spirits.

"The accident meant nothing to me … I'm just buzzing still. You can't bring me down from this cloud I'm on right now."

"This is the most amazing thing that's ever happened to me in my whole life."

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Bono appears to have been exploring Auckland ahead of this week's shows.

The band was spotted atop One Tree Hill before Bono was later spotted dining at SPQR on Tuesday evening.

The band is in New Zealand to kick off the Australasian leg of their Joshua Tree tour, playing two shows this Friday and Saturday at Mt Smart Stadium.