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Claire’s Travel Diary

Friday, 27 Jul 2007

Mapwell it would seem that i'm weeks behind on this so i'll make an attempt at catching up on myself now...

so after raglan we headed to Rotorua, stopping in waitomo for lots of the folk on the bus to do some caving (i decided i'm not a great fan of small spaces so left them to it) the rest of us had a much more exciting time going to watch some angora rabbits being sheered, they start off looking huge and fluffy then it turns out they're just normal sized but have such extremely long fur. in rotorua i did some white water sledging, seems a silly thing to do in the winter but it turns out it wasn't actually that cold, amazing what a big thick wet suit can do for you! basically you're just in the water holding onto a big float and going down some rapids down the river, it was good fun although i was rubbish at it, any time i kicked to try and move anywhere nothing seemed to happen, thankfully being the only girl in a group of guys i got pleanty of help and got down in one piece, was great fun actually but hurt me in ways i didn't know i could hurt for the next few days. after rotorua our group dispersed with about half the bus staying on, was sad saying goodbye to so many of them, our family was beginning to break up, thankfully there was quite a group of us contiuing on so we survived!!

next stop was taupo which thankfully was a little quieter, being so busy i don't think my body knew what to do with itself after having been so lazy over the past month or so. although we did go to and win the pub quiz which isn't bad! then we headed south through tongariaro national park, there's aparently a fantastic walk over the mountains which at this time of the year are covered in snow but unfortuantly the wather wasn't great so we couldn't do it, got some great views from the bus though and went to some hot pools instead so all was not lost! fantastic hostel in the middle of the national park were i with my many helpers cooked up a storm of stir fry, which is tricky for 20 people with limited resources but all was well, main issue being that 4 of our group were still out walking without a tourch well after dark but thankfully they all returned safe and sound in time for their feed.

the next stop was wellington but before we got there we made a stop off at gravity canyon, as you may be able to guess from the name this is a place were you can jump off high things into a canyon. there was a choice of a canyon swing, where they basically dangle you from a bridge then drop you and you free fall for a bit then swing, there was a bungy and a huge flying fox (over 1km long, 157m up, goes at up to about 160km/hr) so i opted for the flying fox, to be honest the least scary of the 3 but lasted longer and was a bit different. was great fun me, lena and jayson all did it together, quite a hike up to where it starts and the scariest part was when you're at the top all strapped in facing head first down this huge canyon with your legs up in the air behind you ready to go, the flying bit itself was great fun, you're not quite going fast enough that it feels like a freefall but still much fun. then they put you back and forth a bit then you have to do the whole thing in reverse, good fun!! after all that we didn't get to Wellington till the early evening so just time to go for some food and a few drinks, my last night with my stray family :o(

we had to get up ridiculously early the next morning to get the ferry over to picton, but despite the early rise we were all in good spirits, even doing some ceilidh dancing in the ferry terminal and then once on the ferry some of the guys running around like mad men trying to get the best photos. it was a great day so it was a beautiful crossing but really sad saying goodbye to everyone when we got to picton, but needs must and i was off to see the all blacks in chirstchurch so i couldn't complain too much!

So i headed to Christchurch were i was staying with my friend Tris who i met when i was over here last time, was great we had the laziest weekend ever largely sitting around his house watching telly and playing on his xbox, just what i needed after my busy week down the north island. also we went to see the all blacks, which was fantastic! the haka was amazing, i can definately see how that might intimidate another team! then the rugby was pretty rubbish for most of the game to be honest but then at the end for the last 15 minutes or so the all blacks were amazing!! and we were about 4 rows back from the pitch so could see it all nice and close, fantastic, really worth going to see.

right i think that's enough for today, just incase any of you are trying to contact me my NZ mobile is no longer at one with this world in that i dropped it into a cup of tea and it decided it doesn't want to work any more, i'm going to get myself a new one today so i'll let you know my number when i have one, it's not been a great few days with that and i've got myself soem kind of sick bug, had one night where i could only move from my bed to be sick and yesterday when i thought i was feeling a bit better and went out for a sociable orange juice and nearly fainted in the bar from not having really eaten, don't worry though parents one of my friends walked me back to my hostel, i've been eating more and slept for 12 hours so on the mend now! think a few lazy days and i'll be back on track!