Hey campers :) Just got back from the Rainforest. What about you? ;)
I'll pick up where I left off yeah?
So when I got off the naked bus from Queenstown in Christchurch I was greeted by Mark, Zach and Poppy and we headed to the game!!! I was wearing cream travelling pants, Nick's hoodie which has noodles, snot and toothpaste all over it and my hiking boots. So classy! I remember all those years ago going to see the super 12 games and watching Dan Carter kick his heart out for the Mighty Crusaders! It hadn't changed a bit, it was soo cultural and exciting. We got massive hot dogs and watched the cheer leaders and horses gallop around the stadium. The AMI stadium is a whole stadium erected temporarily until they fix the old one after it fell down during the earthquake it was like sitting on a mass of toothpicks! So yeah big exciting win to the Crusaders as always! Loved it. I'm such a rugby girl.
So the next day we (Nicki, Mark and Poppy) packed up the wagon and the truck and headed north to Hanmer which is a natural hot springs village. It was a gorgeous journey into the mountains and poppy introduced me to spiced chai latte's which are insanely good. Sitting in the hot pools, in the dark, snow coming down and the mountains around us and talking about life with Nikki and Poppy is a memory i will have for a long time. It was so relaxing and such a treat and it felt like home to be part of their beautiful family again.
After our wee mini break in Hanmer, Poppy and I hired a 4x4 Subaru, packed it up and drove 7 hours over snowy Arthur's Pass to West Country Rainforest and Glacier Land; Franz Josef! That's right, I drove pretty much non stop of mountain passes for 7 hours my insurance policy was extortionate!!!!!! Haha. Ok, i did stop on the journey and took off all my clothes and ran into a lake...standard but that was just because I was bored and had my togs (costume) so WHY NOT!? Was a bit chilly in winter but refreshing after a road trip!
We stayed in an adorable hostel in Franz Josef filled with Asians who cooked banquettes every night whilst poppy and I disgraced them with packet noodles. (I will puke if I eat anymore noodles, but they are coming to Aukland). We had a sauna and a communal piano and guitar in the common room. Quirky! :) The first day we got there the weather was torrential downpour. It was the kind of rain that is so fat and falls straight downwards and soaks your entire body and underwear in a matter of minutes. So obviously we decided to go for a 4 hour ice walk on the Fox Glacier. No brainer in that weather... It's been two days and my skin is still pruned ;) the ice walk was fantastic. It was a once in a lifetime experience to walk on a real life glacier (it's receded about 400m in length and 50m in height since the 60s) there's not long left. Our guide said he'd get about 20 years more out if his job then the glacier would be too hard to brag about. So I feel privileged. I really wanted to dive in the ice hole but I'm glad I didn't because after filling my bottle up in a melt river I realised how cold it was. Milliseconds after my hand touched the water it was in absolute agony. My bones felt so excruciatingly cold and achy I can only imagine how quickly my body would have shut down if I'd dooked in the ice pond. Getting to wear crampons was pretty cool despite how tame the ice climbing was!
On Thursday Poppy and I took a hike through the rain forest to find some glow worms. It rained so hard that I had a full on river of water running off of my face! We walked up hill for about half an hour until we found a tiny man dug tunnel which appeared to go right through the mountain. The tunnel was filled with about 8 inches of water and was pitch black. But we ventured in!!!! :) not gonna lie, we got about 50m into the tunnel and got scared that we were about to be eaten by the creatures from 'The Descent' so we headed back out prematurely. However we did see some glow worms and I sang to them my glow worm song, if goes like this:
'I wish I were a glow worm
Because I glow worm's never glum
'Cus how can you be sad
When the sun shines out of your bum?'
And they LOVED my singing! All of the little sunny bums came out to play and it was amazing! Fireflies in Nepal (tick) glow worms in NZ (tick). Lovely.
Pops and I then hired some push bikes and got royally soaked even more for about two hours trying to find a mountain bike trail. The map began disintegrating at a touch because of the rain so we decided to retreat back to the warmth of the open fire in the hostel. I then lost my other half for the trip to the weather so I headed for a little solo tramp to take a look at the famous mighty Franz Josef glacier which was steeper and longer than Fox but only accessible into the ice by helicopter.
The last night was lovely at the hostel- Poppy and I shared a bottle of wine and some Oreos with two American guys and then we stayed up chatting to a German guy, two Canadians and an American girl which was lovely. I literally find nothing more interesting than listening to people's travel stories. I'm looking forward to having a million and one amazing and wild stories to tell everyone if they want to listen when I'm home. Unfortunately the weather prevented me from doing my skydive at Franz which I'm gutted about but I'm sure I will find another way to get that adrenaline rush in the North Island next week! The scary thing is that I've only got four weeks left of my trip! I've been wanting this for so long and it's going to be over in four weeks! :(
Missing everyone at home but I could do with an around the world ticket. w***. Anyway I'm running out of money and I'm not even half way through my trip yet so I think an around the world ticket would break the bank! Or as my pal said 'my friend got a job working as a receptionist in a strip club in Asia? Got paid heaps!' Erm no! However there's an ace system over here where you can exchange your work for free night stays at a hostel. So I really should have made camp in Queenstown and got a job for free accommodation. Next time!
Next blog should include a trip to the Castle Hill ski fields (weather permitting !) & my first steps up north for 8 years! Can't wait to share it with you.
Apologies for crap typing. Didn't proof read again!