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Status update

We reached New Zealand’s capital Wellington at around 10pm on April 27th in a wet and cold autumn storm that matched our melancholic mood of farewell from the South Island. The menacing looking dark clouds had already built up when we arrived in Picton and they kept their promise of a rough ferry ride. We didn’t even want to go up on deck to wave farewell to the South Island. Wellies – Wellington Boots.. we realise where this name for gumboots must come from. The youth hostel where we stayed was much better than our last hostel here in Wellington but still it was big, anonymous and lacks all sorts of cosy atmosphere. The difference to the Almond House in Nelson couldn’t be any bigger. Here we had had an unforgettable time over Easter with an international party of people, consisting of one Welsh guy, two French people, one Swedish girl, four Canadians and three Germans. We had had a lot of fun despite some misunderstandings and arguments based on cultural differences in communication habits or humor. It’s quite impressive how quickly the old hostility between the United Kingdom, France and Germany comes up again. It is even more amusing how quickly UK and France seem to drive each other nuts whereas Germany splits up, with one part ganging up with UK and developing a global miscomprehension for France and vice versa. Hardly surprising, Canada watches the whole scenery in amusement but is noninvolved and Sweden, with comprehension and compassion for both sides, tries to mediate. It might be considered a sad or a funny business: Old habits do seem to die hard :oD

We don’t have that much to tell about Wellington as we spent 3 days with the final Allegro Furioso of our change-of-flight-drama. Of course we had some time for coffee and a visit in the Te Papa Museum anyway. I might repeat myself, but I want to give you this advice again: Try to avoid flying with the Qantas-British Airways – coalition if you can. For two months we had tried to change our flights and finally we found out at last what the real problem was: We have a Qantas ticket but flights with BA. Even though they share their companies, they can’t see each other’s program system. Strange don’t you think? Considering, in a coalition like that the fact that having a ticket with one airline but flights with the other might not be that uncommon. But anyway, nobody was responsible for us, no one seemed to be able to help us and we were sent from one to the other. Neither of the two airlines has an office in whole New Zealand and the helpdesks at the airports – only accessible with a 7$/h parking ticket minimum – are absolutely useless. Leave alone the hotlines. I spent hours embracing the “please-hold-the-line”-tunes and tried desperately to communicate our problems to the nice Indian guys at the other end of the line. This is by no means a racist statement but only an innuendo to our communication problems on both sides. But thanks to the nice lady in the STA-travel agency we solved it in the end. Now our next travel destinations are Indonesia, Hawaii with a 5-day stopover in Samoa on the way and Alaska before we come back home in August.

So on April 29th we got out of Logistic-Spongebob-World and finally left Wellington in the nicest sunshine. From Wanganui we took a detour over the Wanganui River Road and the Forgotten World Highway, heading to New Plymouth because Chris wanted to see Mount Taranaki, a volcano on the west coast. The drive through the Forgotten World is popular for its views – though we didn’t know that and didn’t see much of it either as it was already dark. The drive was quite scary as the name of the highway is there for a reason. The whole area is barely habituated and most houses one can see from the bumpy gravel road are abandoned and/or devastated due to time or fire. It didn’t help much that the thunderstorm from the night of our ferry ride caused several landslides and more than once did we manage in the last minute to avoid a collision with one of the rocks laying on the surface. But this didn’t spoil our fun of course. So we spent our time with lots of food and coke while we laughed a lot, singing „Unheilig“ at the top of our voices. Seriously, have you ever listened to the lyrics? Hilarious, I can tell you!

Very tired we managed to reach the hostel in New Plymouth before midnight in the end. Have a good night, dear blog-readers.

New friends :o) Another restless wanderer on this earth… Tim is originally from Wales but has travelled and lived abroad for the last few years

sunset in Nelson

sunset in Wellington from Mount Victoria

on the Wanganui River Road

Mount Taranaki

Mount Taranaki

3 Kommentare auf “Status update”

  1. Kadmos sagt:

    Servus ihr beiden,

    Die Bilder die ihr gemacht habt sind wirklich immer wieder einfach nur atemberaubend. Zusammen mit euren berichten bekommt man richtiges Fernweh.
    Ich wünsch euch noch viele schöne Momente und geniesst es.

    Viele Gruesse

  2. Anke Schultze sagt:

    Hallo ihr 2,

    vielen Dank für eure Karte, die letzte Woche angekommen ist. Ich werde immer ein wenig wehmütig, wenn ich an Queenstown denke, denn das waren bisher die schönsten 2 Wochen meines Lebens und doch schon wieder so lange her.
    Wer hätte gedacht, daß euch noch die Zeit knapp werden würde und vor allem, daß ihr in 3 Monaten wieder da seit. Es rast alles so dahin, aber das hatte ich euch im Dezember am Flughafen schon profezeit … ;-) …. ich schwelge immer wieder in euren Bildern und auch wenn ich nicht viel schreibe, bin ich gedanklich oft bei euch und hier regelmäßiger schreibfauler Gast.

    Gnießt eure noch verbleibende Zeit und fühlt euch gedrückt!!!


  3. Tim sagt:

    hej guys, i just read the post about your time inside the Almond House, loved especially the anonymous hostility section very well written ;) , hope both of you have enjoyed the north and ahvent been caught in the mini monsoon conditions we have had of late, i must go i have a late check and thanks for the lead photo love it, see you on the other side!