As you all know, my friend Jess, her mum and her baby sister Briea came to Rotorua to pick me up for the next stage of my adventure. First things first, meeting the new baby sister who is almost a year old. I'm no kid person simply because I'm not usually around little people, but I have to admit she was pretty cute!
After a good catch up with my Nana, off we went in search of some tourist attraction in Rotorua, tourist town and all that, surely one wouldn't be too hard to find? lol, I guess it depends on how much money you want to spend! Put it this way, I wouldn't spend almost $100 (per person) to wander around a big Geothermal experience thing...Anyway, we eventually found one that was more towards our price range but still quite expensive when you think about it. Another geothermic place called Hell's Gate (ridiculous name hey?) where we can wander around all the sulfur lakes.
In all honesty, it was surely too hot to be walking through there. I mean, the heat and smell of the sulfur and the general temperature being around 30 degrees...but, it was interesting. I definitely wouldn't be too keen on falling into one of them, what with the extreme heat and the extreme acidity! There was one somewhat volcano, that apparently erupts every six weeks and sends lava like substance in a five metre general range. We were understandably pretty glad that the six week mark wasn't the same day we were visiting haha
That night Jess and I got a few movies out, one of them being Super Fast & Super Furious. It was a re-enactment of The Fast and Furious being made fun of. So one of the lines basically went-
'what are you driving?'
'A car...with unicorns on it!'
And quite seriously, this car had unicorns painted all over it. The whole movie was pretty ridiculous, but funny all the same. I wouldn't watch it again, but it's one of those movies where I can now say, been there done that, got the t-shirt sort of thing. The fact that Jessica fell asleep and was snoring her head off all the way through it meant nothing...hehe
On Tuesday we all went for a (expense free) trip to the Hamilton Gardens, a beautiful place but also another place I probably wouldn't feel the need to visit again in this lifetime. There were some gorgeous designs in there though, you surely have to think - wow, it's pretty incredible how they can keep it looking so awesome.
|This is covered in grapes which look pretty neat winding around the poles :)|
|It doesn't look it, but these are extremely tall. The flowers themselves are potentially the size of the average person's head - or bigger, and my height (5 foot 2ish) would go up to the leaf on the right below the flower...|
|And this one is a major award winning design apparently, or something. But plants are hanging upside down and there's a shower of water with a pond underneath.|
On Wednesday Jess and I went off on our own to the Hamilton zoo, somewhere else I'd never been before. It was cool, but at the same time it felt weird being around the tiger enclosure - since it hasn't really been that long since the keeper was killed in there...
|I actually quite like Giraffe's, they seem like such gentle giants. Although, they probably aren't but it's a nice thought!|
|Pretty little Zebra, no?|
|The Chimp's were mostly all chilling out inside. Sleeping. Pretty lazy.|
After the zoo Jess shouted me lunch at the local pub/restaurant in Te Awamutu, we wandered around a few shops, yet again trying to free ourselves from the heat by going into the air conditioned shops! Every night we were sort of sitting up watching a movie until about 10 ish, but then we're still sweltering with a fan going and all the windows opened. It got to the point where I was still wide awake well after 11pm, not wanting to keep my bedroom windows open while I slept as I didn't trust anyone what with being in town and all that, so it was like sleeping in a sauna. Problem is that it's a different sort of heat as well, with it being a different climate.
One thing that surprised me was that not once while I was in Gizzy did I suffer from the typical hayfever. So not only did I not find it too hot being there, but I also didn't sneeze my head off - very strange. There must be different trees and grasses down there or something to what I'm used to. Actually, while I'm thinking about it - are there many pine trees around there? I think there were a few. Hmmm...
Thursday eventually came around and I caught the bus out of TA just prior to 11am, it didn't take us too long to get to Auckland, Sky City. The bus terminal is directly underneath Sky City and the Sky Tower, it's not the most safest place to be in my opinion. Although I'm not the biggest fan of Auckland city streets as it is, this place just seemed very unnerving. I wouldn't want to arrive there later at night, that's for sure. Anyway, it was a good terminal in the way that they do have an actual office where you can lock your bags up in lockers if need be, and there's bathrooms right there so you don't need to go hunting.
However the transfer for the next bus is an extreme amount of time. I arrived at 1:20 and left at 4pm, so it was a decent amount wait. Anyhow, the bathrooms I soon discovered are pretty dodgy, not somewhere you should go alone and with a few bags. These two women came in, one of them dropping smoke butts everywhere - scrambling to pick them all up as if she was gonna reuse them or flush them down the sink. I think she might've been stoned, or something. I've never met a druggy face to face so I wouldn't know.
But yeah, she got between me and my suitcase and wouldn't let me past. Started speaking, and I thought she said "you should never trust me" and I'm just wide eyed, thinking, no crap sherlock. But then it turned out she was saying "You should never trust men", she kept going on and on and on, "don't ever be alone" "Never trust any of them" etc etc etc for a good minute or so. All crazy eyed and such. I'm just standing there, shaking, nodding for fear of disagreeing with her at any cost. Then once I got a chance I grabbed my suitcase and got out of there as fast as I could, quite freaked out. Conscious of the fact that it was a closed in space with no cameras or other people around.
Once I got back on the street I was thinking, Ok, need to get into a busy public space somewhere, while also need to find somewhere to eat. But everywhere seems to be dodgy Asian or Indian places that I didn't trust. I thought I'd walk to Britomart which has an endless supply of friendly people and food places, Westfield and all that, but turns out that was a few blocks away. I was feeling quite paranoid about all the random guys walking back and forth on the streets, so in the end I dived into a little cafe and grabbed the last sandwich, then made my way back to the main street. In actual fact there's a cafe diagonally across the road from the terminal (and a small cafe at the terminal but it didn't look too flash), so I made my way over there.
I kicked myself thinking I should've gone over there to begin with, it's full of friendly staff and lots of people in there, so I grabbed a milkshake so I could have an excuse to use their seating, then spent my time people watching, inhaling all the disgusting exhaust fumes and writing in my journal. Yep, I keep an extra thing to a blog these days, it's quite handy and keeps my handwriting in check!
Once the bus to northland arrived at the terminal I skedaddled over there for fear that it might change its mind and leave early. It seems many other people had the same thought so I just joined the crowd of people sitting on suitcases waiting for 4pm to come around. Yet again, people watching and writing. One old guy asked if I was from England, because I was writing in a diary, nope just a local I replied. He said he had one once, but lost his bag on the trip so three weeks worth of memories were gone. I felt his pain, it would be awful to lose mine!
Finally though, I made it home. Mum was waiting for me with Jackson in the ute, he was so excited to see me, jumping all over me and licking my face - pretty gross dog! haha It was nice to finally be home again. Pippa was, pretty meh about the fact I was home. She sorta wound herself around my feet, I gave her a cuddle but she was more interested in food. So later on she suddenly looked at me wide eyed, as if she suddenly realised it was me. Pfft, I expected more of a reaction! Although this morning she was pretty excited to see me, as if she thought she'd just been dreaming. Mum and Dad have been letting her get away with blue murder though, Dad was leaning against the bench and she's just chilling out beside him and he wasn't even saying anything...
Speaking of Dad, I think he missed me. I think everyone missed me. I think they all missed me from the minute I walked out the door! But I'd been hanging out with Mum for a while when Dad got home. He was just like - "Dude", with the raised eyebrows. So I'm just like, "Ette" (dudette kinda). It's our thing. Then he came over for a hug, I was cracking up saying, gee Mum hasn't even given me a hug yet! But it's so good to be home, sleeping in my own bed in my own home. You don't realise how much you like it until you get to go home after a decent stint away. Then I disappointed them and went off to our young farmer meeting with Nick, wished I'd just stayed home as it wasn't too exciting and I just sat there falling asleep at the table. Sheesh, even Nick missed me. He drove my car to work the other afternoon and actually complimented me on my good car, he reckons it handles better on the gravel than he expected which is slightly amusing...apart from the fact he drove it in his gumboots...
Anyway, I go back to milking from tomorrow, I've got a busy week catching up with everything. Got lots of milking to do and fencing next week so it should be nice to get back into my schedule. I have to admit though, it's been a pretty awesome holiday. Couldn't have asked for a better one! :)
|The Gorge - excuse the blurry photo|
|View from the top of the farm, looking out towards the east coast. The sea blurs into the sky so it's hard to see in a picture|
|Cute little walking track that used to be used for horse and carriage - back in the day|
|This one is for Andrew, lol, I found out that Twinkies aren't actually chocolate like I thought, but actually little cake things haha. They sell them in some funny shops around the place that sells overseas junk food :P You're welcome!|