Published: April 30th 2009March 21st 2009
21/3/09 = The Beautiful Buscot Station
Had to get up early for bus to take us to Omarama. Crept around in dark, got a lovely wram shower - did I mention how cold it is here on a morning? - had breakfast and made lunch for the day. Got on our bikes then and pedaled off to i-site to wait for bus. It came nice and early at 8:40, so we loaded bikes and climbed straight on. Dab hands as dismantling bikes now! Nice bus man said he would drop us right outside hostel, which was a little out of town (9kms), so could sit back and relax for 2 1/2hr journey then. Read all the way until arrived in Omarama at 12:30. Shame couldn't have cycled here; would have been a nice ride, but was too far to do in one day and there was no mid-way point to stop over in between. Just meant less riding and more money on buses :(
Arrived on some kind of main road, with a sign pointing to hostel (Buscott Station) a little set back. Unloaded bikes, then looked ahead at the 1.5ks to get to Buscott Station. Looked like a
farm and could barely see a building - none of us had glasses on. Maybe it would be a farmstay? Really wanted to do one of those. Was a gravel drive all way to end, so no way we could bike it. Had to load things on and push our way. Pusked up path, which ran along fields and passed cows - definitely some kind of farm - until building became clearer. Looked beautiful; like a really beautiful, traditional farmers cottage. It was my dream home in reality. Surely couldn't be a hostel? Had a beautiful garden as well and looking around, it was set right in middle of Mackenzie country with nothing but mountains and fields for miles. Not a single other building in site. Totally remote and totally beautiful. Found a girl sitting reading on veranda and she showed us around. Main house was to share between us all and it was an ordinary, lived in cottage. We were sleeping in back building = dormitory. It was also lovely; not a bunk bed in sight :). They even had a cute on-site dog called Trixy. It was all so 'countryside perfect' and felt immediatley at home and happy.
Was a nice sunny day, so went straight into beautiful garden to lay on grass and read. Amazing views. What a place to live. Sat in sunshine, listened to music, then as clouds moved in and it got colder, decided it was time to ride into town and get food. Really couldn't be bothered to get on bikes because were so happy at beautiful house, but needs must. In times like this that wish town was closer! Not a bad ride there and barely any hills; can't really complain about 9kms! And by time came to riding back, actually enjoyed it - needed exercise. Plus, got special treats for dinner. No pasta, no rice, no beans on toast....what does that possibly leave I hear you say?....well....fishfinger sandwiches and oven chips, that's what! Soooo excited. Ride home was enjoyable because were riding towards tasty food :)
Not quite dinner time when we got back, so sat at dining table and wrote journal for a while. Such an isolated and relaxed place that everyone sat reading or playing games. Then, at 6pm, put oven on and got ready for the best dinner ever...a childhood dinner. It took an hours cooking,
True Mackenzie country
Barren, but still beautiful.
but when it was ready, it was perfect. Made tasty fishfinger sandwiches and little chip butties. Beautiful. Only tomato ketchup could have made it better, but we couldn´t afford that luxory. By time had finished happily eating, realised we had eaten our way through a full packet of fish fingers and a whole bag of oven chips. 14 fish fingers between 2 of us! We definitely didn't cycle enough to deserve that much today. V.full by end of it (non-suprisingly) so headed up to room to 'lay it off'. When belly eased, went back to house and cosy lounge to watch some T.V. Just about to choose a film when Tony (owner) put a classical concert on. That soon cleared us out. Went back to bed and read book for an hour, then went to sleep. What a brilliant place to catch up on sleep :)
22/3/09 = Day 6: A chilled and steady ride to Twisel
OH MY DAYS.....WORST nights sleep EVER...and not just since been travelling. An idiot guy in bed next to me snored the whole night long. First, he woke me up at 1am with his train snoring. Tried to ignore
him - have had to develop coping strategies on this trip - but I just couldn't. Pushed his bed quite hard and the little movement seemed to wake him up so that he stopped. Good. 2am = thunder snoring. Oh no! Didn't even try and ignore him this time; too mad. Shook his bed quite frantically and this time he opened his eyes and looked right at me. Oh no! Dived back into bed - oh yes, shaking his bed involved me getting out of mine - and pretended to be asleep...ha...I should be so lucky! 3:15am....OH MY DAYS! How many more times can this possibly happen??? Passed mad this time and also passed caring; here he was getting all this deep sleep and here I was, sleeping innocently and quietly, but being punished for it. Not having it! Kicked his matress really hard....so hard that he sat bolt upright in bed. He may have looked at me, he may not have, I didn't care. Simply rolled over and tried to get to sleep quickly, before idiot snorer did! Didn't last long. That idiot woke me up every hour, sometimes twice an hour, so that I didn't even get one
hours solid sleep. If I had have had a gun, I swear I would have shot him and not even felt guilty...at least not until I had got some good sleep anyway. That night, he was the person I hated most in the world....really hated!
At 5am, I gave up and did what I should have done at 1am. No I didn't shoot him (although I contemplated it seriously); I got out of the doomed bed next to him and got into the furthest empty bed away from him. Why didn't I think of it sooner!? Put my head under both the cover and the pillow and prayed for just a few hours sleep; only had a few hours left anyway. Next time I opened my eyes, it was to sound of alarm telling me it was 8:15. Felt rubbish, like I had hardly slept at all. Looked up to find idiot snorer was still sleeping and snoring away - outrage! How dare he still be sleeping. Contemplated a whole manner of things I won't divulge for fear of shocking and outraging anyone...but I still really hated him!
Trudged off to main house in a bad mood and
made porridge feeling absolutely shattered. Only a short cycle of 22kms to day = a good job, and also meant could set off later and lounge around house for a while. Couldn't bare to go back into room while that idiot was still sleeping. Wrote diary for a while and when hefinally woke up from shis 10hr sleep and cleared off, went back to room, got changed and packed up. Set off for Twisel at 10:30 and despite lateness of morning, it was still really cold. Beautiful blue sky, cut a 'crisp' kind of cold....like when Jack Frost comes. Rode through Mackenzie country for first time and it looked just like Lord of the Rings = all hills and mountains covered in thick tufts of brown grass and plants that lined all sides of roads. Like a blanket of dead plants life; that colour anyway. Rode for an hour and a half without stopping and really happy with how easy it was. Road was lovely and flat nearly all the way, with not a single big hill in sight. This was my kind of ride. Totally typical that such a great, flat road would only occur on our shortest day
Found Twisel town and i-site not long after. Went straight in and booked a place to stay. Turned out that cheapest place was another homestay type hostel just 3kms out of town. Perfect...and only $22 = one of cheapest places so far. Booked it and rode straight to it. Love these house stay type things. Again, Omahau Downs had a look of a farm, even though it wasn't. Were greeted by a really friendly lady and she showed us straight to our....tin hut? Was a little out building made of metal - which looked all too familiar - but actually it was really nice. Was just the 2 of us in a cosy little room with a heater and then had access to our own cottage/house where could cook, shower and watch T.V. It was another really lovely house and since couldn't see anyone else there, it was all ours. Lounge even had a woodfire...awesome. Did a bit of washing, got sorted, then headed into town for food and internet. Concerned that camera not working properly and saying card error - needed to get photos copied straight away before corrupted.
Went to i-site again to book a
nights stay in Mt Cook Village for tomorrow, then found the internet at a YHA hostel. Spent ages trying to burn photos onto CD and after hours, it would still only let me make 1 copy, but 1 better than none. Came away feeling bit better and really praying camera would mend itself. Did a mini food shop for dinner and lunch tomorrow, then had a steady cycle home at 3pm...only 3kms afterall. Still a lovely sunny day = a nice change, so laid on garden grass and listened to music. After whiling away a few hours, made dinner. Dinner today= shockingly poor, especially in comparison to luxory of yesterday. Flavoured noodle pot and bread...such fine foods! Was nice for a chnage from pasta and rice though. Made fire up - love a good natural fire - and ate in warmth of lovely lounge. Wrote a bit, then rang Mum for Mothers Day. Really nice to talk to her and catch up. Just nice to hear peoples voice sometimes. Has been a long time now.
Went back to wartmth of fire then and watched T.V. for a few hours. Not great T.V., but so good to be in a
warm house...an actual house. Even better knowing going into a warm room - put heater on an hour earlier - and would definitely be no snorer tonight...yesssss!
There are more photos below