Watch out world the Barkers are coming!
Well happy new year 2006! Hope you all had a good one! Ours was a good giggle, after sunning ourselves over Christmas on the beach we headed down to Nelson, (a busy town north of the south island) where we met up with some mates of Graham. 2 NZ guys, an Irish couple, and an Irish girl. They had rented a lovely house, so after a night of dancing and drinking in an Irish bar 'till god knows when, we sat on the veranda watching the sunrise over the harbour. I didn't manage to sleep until 4 the next afternoon!! 1 reason being a very strange Austrian guy who someone picked up on the road was also at the party and was not safe to keep your eyes off. He was eventually chucked out after offering to buy me!! Very wierd man, don't think he had ever met strangers before, quiet amuzing though! From Nelson we went to the Fox Glacier where I managed to get the boys to come 'sport walking' on a tour onto the Glacier in the pouring rain. It was amazing to be actually there on this huge piece of ice, blue because of the density. We had to wear crampons, and there were steps cut out for us to walk on, so it wasn't too slippy! The drive from there to Queenstown was amazing, we followed the Southern alps (mnt Cook etc) on our left with ragged coast and blue seas on our right. I must say this is the most dramatic country I have ever been to. Every corner gives sights of waterfalls, clear lakes and rivers, snow topped mountains and lush green forest. We even drove up to the ski resort outside Queenstown and played in the snow, and it was actually snowing!! Queenstown was a good laugh, we met up with one of the NZ guys from New Year, who is now living in Melbourne (free accomodation, and being shown the sights when we meet up with him there), and we all went out for a silly night of drinking and dancing, poor guy kept us with us very well, but the next day found out he had lost his wallet, so we spent the day sorting that out with him. We are now in TeAnua the drop off place to Milford Sound, a huge fiord caused by a glacier running all the way to the sea, surrounded by mountains covered in snow, with waterfalls thundering into the sea. We took a small ferry through all the way to the sea with the skipper giving us commentary, very cold but stunning. (the company was Mitre if anyone was heading that way). We are now off back to Queenstown to sort out the van to give back to the company in Christchurch. Hopefully we will get away with the pink scratches on the roof! We gave it a good wash yesterday and she looks a lot better! We were suppossed to be throwing ourselves off stuff today but the gale force winds and rain make it look a little less likely. Maybe tommorrow!? Keep in touch everyone, we are thinking of you all getting ready to go back to work, which we shall be doing soon when we get to Melbourne in a week. Snap back to reality for a while, eek!! Lots of love Ellen and Dave