Sunday, May 22, 2005

Oz/Kiwi

Its been quite a while since my last post but i have eventually got round to updating! Now to recall what i actually did.....ummm.

So after a rather restless 14 hours on the coach we got into Melbourne at about 8am with no clue of where we were going to stay untill a backpacker shuttle driver gave us a few choices. We chose to stay in a place called All Stars motel in St Hilda which was a little way out of town but was a very nice area. We had found out that it was Neighbours night, where a few stars from the show meet the public, at a pub just a short distance from our hostel so we decided to book ourselves onto that. After a few hours sleeping we took a walk into the centre of St Hilda to have a look around the shops, however this is when we found out that Ed actually had no money left at all. This presented a few problems such as we still had a month or so left of our travels but Jackie and I bailed him out with a couple of loans untill he got his finances sorted. Later that evening we took a taxi over to the Elephant and Wheelbarrow and joined a rather large queue waiting to get seated and get ready to meet the stars of Neighbours. We were joined at our table by three other Neighbours fans and got a couple of drinks in and began to fill out 1 of 3 quiz sheets we were to do that evening. Soon after the lights dimmed and the host began announcing the neighbours stars as they came out one by one "Tad", "Dr Karl", "Steph Scully" and "Toadie". After a while they all came round to the tables and everyone got thier photos taken with them and had a small chat which was quite cool. Once all the quiz papers were filled out and given in the winners were announced, unfortunately we came 2nd which was good but not good enough! Soon Dr Karl came onto the stage with his band and played us a few songs to end the evening then the pub turned into a club and people began to dance the night away, not us though we headed back for some good sleep.
Tuesday and wednesday were almost exactly the same, we woke up late, made some food and then chilled and watched about 5 DVDs, great money saving days.
Thursday we got up quite early and took a taxi to the Airport, saying goodbye to lovely Australia and preparing ourselves for perhaps some more difficult times in New Zealand.
So we arrived into Christchurch airport and some cooler weather to say the least. Caught a bus into the center of town and took a short walk to Carlie Bs backpackers hostel. We booked ourselves in for 2 nights because we wernt sure when we would be leaving as we needed to phone up the Kiwi Experience centre to book us onto a coach, however first of all we all needed to check our accounts. As Ed had no money he had two options, go home or stay and work in Christchurch for two weeks, luckily he chose the latter and luckily he a job was going at the hostel to work for accomadation which he was able to get. So as Jackie and I still had some money though we were sure it would run out reasonably soon we decided to book ourselves on the coach for saturday.
Friday was spent looking around Christchurch and hanging about in the hostel a life which Ed would soon get used to im sure. Christchurch is quite a nice place, they say its like little England because well it basically it looks and feels like England, its the largest citie/town in the south island which isnt really saying much as its still pretty small.
After stocking Ed up with a bit of food and some cash Jackie and I began our travels on the Kiwi experience early saturday morning. After a couple of stops for food and toilet we arrived at our destination for the night, Kaikoura, a nice little town a couple of hours north of Christchurch. On the coach the driver sends round an activity form for people to sign onto the activities of the day, Jackie had signed onto swimming with dolphins while i chose the cheaper option of nothing. After getting to our really nice and homely small hostel "Hotspot" Jackie went off to go swimming with dolphins while i decided to take a walk quite a while down the raod to a seal sanctuary where i got up close and personal with lots of seals which was cool. Once back at the hostel and after a wee wait i went to meet Jackie at the dolphin center where she told me that they had seen lots of dolphins but because the weather had turned the water was really rough so while swimming they didnt actually get to see any in the water, however she did get a full refund. We spent the evening in the hostel and chatting to a few people from the coach which was to be the story of much of our travels in NZ.
Sunday and the coach departed at 9, the downside of the Kiwi Exp. is that there is only one coach a day which leaves very early in the morning somedays at 9 some at 7. The coach headed north to Picton where everyone going over to the north island got onto the ferry while we and only 2 others stayed on the coach waiting for our new driver, nicknamed "Stainz" who was to be our driver for a couple of weeks. Nelson was our stop for the night, we stayed for 2, where we shared a room with 2 girls who we befriended. Nelson was a little smaller than Christchurch and spent our day there walking around the main street where jackie bought a new jumper preparing for some very cold weather. On the second night we also befriended a guy called Alex who was to become quite a good friend and a laugh.
So our travels down the west coast were to begin on monday morning, we didnt know it but we were to stay with all the same people on the same coach with Stainz for quite a while and it was going to be an amazing time even with a very little amount of money.
Cya soon.

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