NZ- thursday

we were on our way out of queenstown by ten. i could easily imagine spending the whole time in queenstown. it was so beautiful. but, for this trip, i had many other things to do and people to see. we stopped for a quick breakfast, i had a pie (lamb, rosemary, kumara) and holly and camille picked up mcdonalds.

off to dunedin.

we had a couple small stops scheduled along the way. the first was at a bungy center. the building was way more impressive than i expected. the interior descended pretty deep and there as a beautiful viewing area to watch the people jumping. there was video running explaining all the different levels of bungy jumps and where to find them. i am not even a little interested in jumping. . . there is a swing function that i might entertain someday. . . but for now, i’m content watching others do it. we did see one guy get set up and take the fall. impressively, he didn’t make a peep. . .

it would’ve been nice to take a walk along the span. . . of course the scenery was magnificent.

we stopped in places like roaring meg, clyde dam, and cromwell for little breathers. but our next major stop was roxburgh. first- hit the toilets. i was the only one that was really interested, but after my experience i pretty much demanded that camille and holly had to check them out. here, in this rather small town, were fully automated toilets. push a button, the door opens, push another and it closes. a voice welcomes you and plays soothing muzak as you go about your business. push a button for paper and then wave your hands in the proper place for the water, soap, and dryer to engage. another skittish traveller approached them, and after my one use i had it mastered, so i explained the process. we only drove up the street a bit before we got to jimmy’s pies. i’d heard of this place from camille and holly before, so i was looking forward to my lunch. i got a mince and cheese (a staple pie) and a chicken and apricot. it’s during lunch that we all decided i needed to go on a pie-et. . . and i had to see how many i could eat before i left NZ.

there was a little more driving before we got to milton, a town that has ‘town of opportunities’ on the sign. apparently they are best known for their prison. when we stopped i was confused. . . seems i didn’t understand that milton is where we would meet up with the fourth to our party, kirsty. we all hugged, exchanged hellos, shuffled car seats and drove onward.

when we got to dunedin we decided to get all our stuff placed where we’d be sleeping. cam and i put our things in her sleep away apartment, then headed to her family’s house where holly and kirsty would bunk. ash, cam’s dad, was busy getting ready for my second homemade NZ meal. he’d gotten the recipe out of the paper that day, and it involved large amounts of chocolate in a stew. . . yay. . . but we had a little time to kill. . . so off to see a little of dunedin.

we walked along the esplanade. the waves were lovely and a little larger than anticipated. they kept crashing against the break wall. there was still a little sun, like it had possibly followed us from queenstown. sadly, the sun didn’t stick around till the end of my stay.

then we were on to baldwin street, the steepest street in the world. a fantastic way to work up an appetite. the pictures from the bottom don’t really do it justice. it really seemed to curve up exponentially. i find it ridiculous that anyone would want to live there. . . but perhaps the view from the top has something to do with that. it didn’t take as long as i thought, but it was a little too late to get my certificate from the gift shop, so we had swing by on friday.

time for dinner! i met a couple more family friends, cam’s mom was there for dinner, and cam’s brother and friends stopped by for a few minutes. stacey (who i’d met on Skype before) was the only one there for the night. dinner was a chilli beef chocolate stew (tasted a little like a mole) mashed potatoes, turnip mash, roasted kumara, yams, and pumpkin, then beans and broccoli. so wonderful. there was a chocolate cake and ice cream as part of dessert, but the part i was really interested in was the pavlova. never had it before and i’ve been missing out! of course, now i’ve been super spoiled- cam’s dad is a chef and he put together an amazing spread.

after we let the feast settle a little we went out to the warehouse (big store, think target or walmart) where, of course, i did some more gift shopping.

afterward we had drinks and chips and dip at ash’s house. the olympics were on in the background and we waited so i could meet laney (another member of the boorer clan) after she got out of work.

at some point cam and i went back to her apt, i met her roommate (stacey’s sister). . . and we tucked the day away.

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