It was a bit crazy on the US election day over here! We walked into the tv room to find two Americans glued to the screen (One of them was wearing a 'Go Obama' t-shirt) and they educated us a bit on their election. when Obama won the American lady kept taking photos of the tv screen (she must have had about 100 photos of the news reader, and I'm not even kidding!) and then they whipped out some champagne and gave us a glass to celebrate with them! Then thher husband was sent down to the supermarket to get some more so they could celebrate all night. It was quite nice but a little bit crazy at the same time!!!
From Kaikoura we drove across to Hanmer Springs, which is quite a little place with a thermal spa, which was a little bit more pleasant than the last one as it didn't smell of sulphur! Although it didn't have the nice views of the one in Rotorua! We stayed in a nice little hostel which was a bit like a log cabin, and it even had a resident cat.
From Hanmer Springs we drove straight towards Greymouth which didn't seem that nice, so we moved onto Hokitik. We tried to get our underwater camera photos developed but apparently they would have to send it away so we wouldn't have enough time to collect them. We went to the 'New Zealand Eco Centre' which is raved about in the lonely planet guide because of it's shark and turtle tanks. It looked a little bit run down from the outside which probably should have dissuaded us, but we went in anyway and quickly discovered that the turtle tank only had about 3 turtles in (none of whom moved for the entire time we were staring at them) and the shark tank was non-existant! There were quite a few big eels which were rather disgusting and a couple of kiwis which were quite cool to see, but it only took 10 minutes to walk around the whole thing so was a bit of a disaster!
The same day we drove from Hokitiki to Franz Josef which is home to the Franz Josef glacier! We arrived quite late last night so didn't do much apart from booking a glacier hike (only the half day one!!) for tomorrow. I think it's meant to take about 4 and a half hours in total but we should have about 2 hours to walk on the ice. Today we had a little walk to the edge of the glacier which only took about an hour, where Sam must have taken a million photos.