While lying in bed last night I began to wonder just how many different beds I’ve slept in since beginning my trip. I came up with 15 beds in 12 cities so far, and a new bed each of the past eight nights. Luckily I’ve had no trouble sleeping unless the room was too hot. Earplugs are mandatory for hostel stays!
Today I’m in Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand, which is at the southern tip of the northern island. My Stray bus tour ended here so I had to say farewell to some new friends. It’s a strange feeling to befriend someone knowing from the start that goodbye is only a few days away. I’ve experienced it with Airbnb, HelpX, and now Stray. Most of the time it ends with a handshake and well-wishes but sometimes the person becomes a real friend and their absence is noticed and felt. Luckily Facebook lets everyone keep up with each other’s travels.
So anyway, Wellington is cold. Like 55 degrees. I signed up for a summer vacation thankyouverymuch! It was about 90 in Sydney when I arrived and I don’t exactly have a winter wardrobe in my backpack. Windy Wellington (as it is nicknamed) has also been very Wet but thankfully the rain stopped for most of my one full day here.
I’d usually stay in a city this size for several days but I have to make a beeline to the south island city of Queenstown by Sunday for a HelpX stay. I’ll be hopping on a ferry early tomorrow then bussing down the west coast with little day trips here and there. Everyone raves about Queenstown as being the adventure capital of the world and I’ve heard a rumor about an even better luge track. Could it be true?
Today I walked around the city and spent most of my time at the Museum of New Zealand, which had lots of creative exhibits about volcanoes, native animals, indigenous people, and early European settlers. There are tons (or heaps, as the locals would say) of restaurants and shops in the downtown area. I strolled into an outdoor store that was advertising 30-40% off and saw a North Face raincoat with an original sticker price of $649. I also saw a pair of hikers that I bought for $100 back home marked at $279. Needless to say, I left with nothing to protect me from the chilly wind!
I would notice the absence of a handsome french man, too (hey, can’t blame me for noticing!). I’m glad you’ve made friends, and had such a fun week, but I’m also selfishly looking forward to being able to text you and grab dinner at the drop of a hat. I miss my friend!
Miss you too Boone! We’ll be back to impromptu dinners in no time, and it’ll be Spring!
Yes, spring is just around the corner! Can’t wait to have ya back ol’ pal. Safe travels in the meantime 🙂
I would think that there are many who would commiserate with Boone’s comment about missing you. It’s very interesting how quickly we take something for granted, and how equally quickly we realize how much we miss the same thing when it is not in convenient reach. Thus it is with you. I have found myself frequently wondering (during your adventure) how those in Louisville who spend lots of time with you, and hang out and do things with you, have filled the void that you have left. It’s like when Judy and I go on vacation and I don’t take a guitar, I find myself wanting to play within a couple of days. I would think that you represent a “favorite guitar” for a large number of people here, and they miss being able to pick you up and play. There is a comfort and kindness that you exude (and always have) that makes a circumstance nicer to be in when you are part of it. And yet, everyone is so behind and with you in this adventure, and willing to give you up for awhile so that you can pursue this trip. That means that we think more of you and your need to do this trip, than our own discomfort in not having you available at the drop of a hat (whatever they call hats in New Zealand). Oh God, I’ve turned into an old, gurgling uncle. It’s just that, from a clinical perspective, I hope that (among other things), you have gotten a new and clearer view of who you are, and the impact that you have (always) had on people. With all the things that I have done in my life, I am pretty sure that I would never do what you are doing. Ya got a lotta guts, kid. Okay, I need to be done now. Hope your next WorkX thing is cool, fun, and lets you meet more new people. Keep us all posted. Peace Unc
David stole every word of the comment above from ME. Read it again and sign it uncle Bob.
What on earth are those weird hominid things? They inhabit my nightmares!
They’re trolls from The Hobbit film. 🙂