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Published: March 1st 2018
Day 2: Ahipara to Waipua Forest, 120km, The Donkey contemplates contemplation.
Day 2 was a big day for Showpony and the Donkey, not only because of the distance. The hills were unrelenting, one after another. In total they climbed at least 9 big hills, that is not counting the many undulations in between the hills. The total climbing they did on day 2 was more than 2000 meters according to Showpony's GPS, which is higher than Mt Hutt and nearly as high as Mt Cook. The Donkey had never climbed so high in one day and Showpony had not much climbed at all in his life but coped remarkably well. The Donkey was admired for his hill climbing ability when he was younger, but not anymore as younger donkeys have taken his place. The Donkey was impressed by Showpony's perseverance. Showponies are known to be bloody minded about a lot of things, but not about hard work. The Donkey had a new found admiration for his friend. It helped that the weather once again assisted them along with a slight tailwind and temperatures which did not exceed 29 degrees. For that part of the country that is a pleasant temperature,
but for Showpony and the Donkey it still felt like a heatwave. They live in Christchurch which has a more temperate climate. The Donkey in particular does not like it to be too hot. His face goes bright red and his head swells up to twice its normal seize. That happened to the Donkey today, after a big lunch, as he was hungry. He stopped and threw water over its head till his face was back to a normal colour and his head back to its usual seize.
The highlight of the day was the Hokianga Harbour which showcased its splendor under a blue sky and with little wind. The second highlight was Tana Mahuta. Tana Mahuta is the oldest tree in New Zealand if not the world. It is more than 2000 years old. It is standing in the middle of the forest, towering over the younger trees, like a king. Imagine if Tana could talk, the Donkey thought. He would have so many good stories to tell about the early days.
But perhaps it is just as well that he cannot talk as people might get angry if he tells the truth how it really was
in the old days and chop him down.
Showpony and the Donkey left at 7 a.m. and arrived at 6 p.m. in the Waipoua Forest camp. Scott and Spot were a bit disappointed with their master’s efforts but they accepted the fact that the old farths had old legs which did not work so well anymore. Spot‘s previous owner was a strong dude who was a bit rough on him but boy could he go. Scott had been told that he was one of the lightest and fastest bikes around so he would likely be picked up by someone who knew how to handle him. So it came as a surprise to Scott that Showpony knew twiddledeedit about mountain biking so Scott had to give his master a few lessons and at one stage got so impatient that he threw him off, much to Showpony's surprise as he was usually the one to throw the tantrums.
Showpony and the Donkey shared a small cabin with bunk beds. Showpony was in bed by 8.30 p.m. while the Donkey did some administration. Today he had worked out why he had said yes to the adventure, as it would give him
time to contemplate. Donkeys like to contemplate. They have a small brain and need time to think about stuff and work things out and Donkeys prefer to do that when they are on the go. For example today the Donkey contemplated the fact that so far they had been really lucky with the weather. It is unusual for Donkeys to get lucky so he was puzzled about that. Then he remembered that Showponies are known for their luck, they never have bad luck, which is why they are show ponies. The donkey decided that perhaps Showpony would bring the luck so they would not just have bad luck, as donkeys usually have, but also some of Showponies good luck. The good luck of Showpony would balance out the bad luck of the Donkey, even if it meant that Showpony might well experience some of the Donkeys bad luck. The Donkey decided not to tell his friend this but just to wait and see what happened.
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