Current Location: Christchurch, Aotearoa

A couple of anniversaries passed me by this week and it gave me a chance to think about a few things. The first one being it’s been one year since I’ve worked a proper job and since I’ve been in Hawaii. I think it’s important that I say it again but a heartfelt thank you goes out to everyone who’s given me a bed, food, a laugh, or best of all the memories of an amazing year. It’s been a great year of cycling, eating, laughing, and experiences. I know people often say that you should travel around while you’re young, I fully agree with that saying for the experiences will stay with you the entirety of your lifetime, this will certainly be something I’ll never forget.

The second anniversary is that this happens to be the 6th month that I’ve been in New Zealand. In that respect I sorta feel like the white rabbit saying “I’m late, I’m late.” But I have to remind myself that I’ve only been on the south island for a total of 2 months now and I’d like to spend until at least the beginning of June here (which would make it 5 months on the south and 7 on the north.) To help me slow things down I’m terribly excited to have gotten a booking on the Milford Track next week on the 16th! This track is heavily regulated as it’s one of the most scenic tracks in all of New Zealand. They allow 40 people a day to do it independently and it costs $40NZ a day to stay in their huts (you aren’t allowed to camp at all) or you can pay $2,000NZ to have a guided 3 day tour and food prepared for you (they allow 50 people a day to do that option.) Fortunately for me there was a cancellation next week that I managed to sneak into. So this basically means I have until Wednesday to figure out how to get my bike and I to Te Aunu in time to catch the ferry over to the beginning of the track. For reference, typically people book this tramp 4 or 5 months in advance.

Another first for me on this trip is I took a bus to get from Dunedin to Christchurch to meet mom and dad. I now have perspective to how much I hate riding the bus from behind the glass. I’ll have to consider how to express how bad it is compared to riding a bicycle. Suffice to say that I’ll have to take a bus back to Dunedin to get back to my bike, but after that I hope never to have to take another bus while in New Zealand (I may have to take one to get to Te Aunu in time, but I’ll try everything to not have to take that option.)

Finally I met mom and dad yesterday, it was a nice treat to be sure. We did what I do best in Christchurch, wander around and drink beer at the Twisted Hop, once again that place hasn’t let me down. I also go my clipless peddles and some Lake shoes and am terribly excited to try them out. On a sour note about the bike, I realized I broke my first spoke this trip, hopefully not a harbinger of things to come.