Down south..

Trip Start Sep 30, 2012
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of New Zealand  , South Island,
Thursday, October 25, 2012

Perfect conditions for the morning ferry ride over to Picton from Wellington – clear skies meant the sounds looked absolutely stunning and was magical watching them glide past as I sat with my (free!) latte. New Zealanders are OBSESSED with coffee by the way. I thought the bus ride to Nelson was pretty dramatic as just as we were coming down the hill twenty minutes from Nelson our brakes were apparently failing and we had to stop and wait for another bus for about two hours, the only entertainment being the very patient baby being passed round all the passengers. However when I told someone that in the hostel that evening they were deeply unimpressed as on one of their bus journeys the police had stopped the bus and arrested a passenger, so that's the kind of competition I have with story telling here!

Several people had told me not to bother with Nelson as it was just a boring port but I actually really enjoyed my time. It’s a very pretty little town, tucked under the hills with a river runnign through surrounded by willow tress and lots of spring blossoms so I did a lot of walking to the geographical centre of NZ and running up by the river. I also took a boat trip to Abel Tasman national park and did some walking around there which is beautiful – golden sands and clear blue waters.

The highlight, however, had to be the free chocolate pudding and ice cream provided by the hostel every evening! Everyone flocked eagerly to the kitchen at 8pm, so it was an unfortunate time to drop a bottle of tui very loudly all over the kitchen floor. Typical. On my last night we headed out to a local bar which was holding a pool tournament and once again things escalated. I was only going to have one drink but the bar tricked me into buying five beers, because it only costs twenty dollars for backpackers, and then the French boys challenged me to a downing competition (or sculling, as they say in NZ) and I wasn’t going to bettered by the French was I? We then headed back to the hostel for a strangely sophisticated end to the evening of brie and crackers before I headed to bed at 3am in order to feel refreshed for my bus at 7.30 the next morning.
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jane southam on

Sounds great wish we where there with you. Well done with your distinction, you deserve it. Uncle Stephen trying to gmail you probably take him all week.
Missing you. xx

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