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Published: September 22nd 2007
I spent 4/5 weeks highly enjoyable weeks in Wellington doing nothing in particular. It was good to be able to walk around the harbour aimlessly day after day listening to my MP3 player watching ferries rolling in and out of the Cook Strait. In Wellington i also had to get a few problems on the bike mended so nothing new there, just cracked cassettes and worn down cogs due to vigorous use of the gears.
Whilst in Wellington I toyed semi successfully with the idea of getting a job. I signed up with several agencies but failed to pass what I can only assume was a fairly basic computer test. Maybe fail is the wrong word to use. From the horses mouth the word was “ failed to get a percentage where by we would feel comfortable placing you with one of our clients” It was a very Forrest Gump moment really. It was quite heartening in the end though as I realised that my half assed efforts didn’t really deserve a positive outcome. Anyhow the horse was able to find me a job at Kathmandu for the weekend (outdoor equipment shop) I think I only really got this job
because she felt a little sorrow for my tardiness on the computer. In the end though it worked out quite nicely though as I continued my long run of jobs that have no responsibility what so ever.
Hmm Kathmandu was a bit of a weird job primarily because I didn’t have a clue what I was meant to be doing. The official word from Rob (manager) was to make myself visible on the shop floor. Two problems there were that I have always favoured the anonymous approach and the other was that I had no idea where anything in the shop was and no idea about anything they sold. My job was to walk around asking every person in the shop if everything was ok and did they need any help? It was weird asking people if they needed “help” because invariably I couldn’t help them. Nine times out of Ten I had to refer them to someone who could help. I found this strange, maybe it wasn’t . The second day was a bit of a struggle due to a long night about town. However I got paid so all was good I guess.
After this little
foray into retail I cleaned at the youth hostel in return for free accommodation. I was the toilet boy for a while then I got moved up to stripping beds. My boss was not to bad and even gave me direct orders to take my time on the job. In my time there I was generally involved in just cleaning up shit, whether it be pigeon or human, yum.
After a few weeks of mulling around the hostel I decided to take off on a little daytrip. Never a day trip that I would have dreamt of, nevertheless and absolute corker. Inspired by a girl who had an interest in wine we shot off to Martin borough for the day. This is about 80km north east of Wellington and famous for creating some good plonk. The fact that she knew her stuff possibly helped created the illusion in the eyes of the people at the vineyard that I was not some scruffy backpacker trying to get pissed on the cheap. Then again maybe it didn’t. Anyhow to my amazement I found words such as earthy, rich and oohhh very sharp coming out of my mouth. The life of a
ferry over to picton
a few cheeky beers to pacify the pain of leaving the north island. My home for 7 months
wino appeals to me. Martin borough is place just literally made up of loads of vineyards and in the centre a few cafes and quirky little shops, I liked it.
It was a bit of a trail getting to this martin borugh place though, primarily because the people at the train station are idiots. I think we ended up about 40km short of our target destination. With the trip on the verge of collapsing due to been able to get to our destination it was time to pull out the well worn hitching thumb. Hitching is always a bit of a mixed bag. As out luck would have it we got picked up some Maori brick shithouse, with Maori Power tattooed across the face. I always find that these kind of tattoos create a bit of un ease combined with a little bit of intrigue. It would be fair to say the boy could drive and he turned what had seemed a day destined for failure into something of a success. He was a nice bloke but theres always the feeling 'that this bloke could permanently damage me if he so chose to. Then there is all the wolfs
creek scenarios going around in my head, damn film! Saying that though hitching always seems to throw up some odd experiences for me personally and you definitely meets some characters, whether they be members of the mongrel mob or generally just a bit out there .
I think after setting my 4th definitive leaving date for the south island it did it actually become reality. After 4 weeks off the saddle I eased myself back into it with a ride from Picton harbour into Picton town which was approximately 1 km. The ferry over the Cook Strait was gusty and a little fresh in the face as expected. The scenery was erring on the side of spectacular, a sign of things to come in the south island hopefully.
I stayed in Picton for the night then made my way to Nelson. After about 75km there was huge bang and that was the tyre completely obliterated. I did mend it kind of I guess. The problem though is that I can never really think logically in such situations and that as it turns out that is a bit of a problem. Anyhow I fought valiantly to solve this problem
whilst battling a severe onslaught of sandflies. I failed to solve the problem, mainly due the fact I didn’t have a new tyre. So I started walking as my phone had no reception to call friends In Nelson. However about 5 km’s on a kind women picked me up, she even had a bike rack. Flew into Nelson and that was really the end of that little saga.
I estimate that in theory it should take me 14 days to cycle the south island. This is probably ill founded and born out of map dreaming. Anyhow tomorrow I have to cycle from Blenheim to Kaikoura which is about 140km. Bar any mishaps it should be quite a nice trip as some of the beaches on the way have seal colonies. People say they are vicious and that they smell, we shall see. After that I am probably going to have to catch a bus to Christchurch as I have a job for a few weeks moving rugs or something like that, its not really so clear in my mind what I will be doing. After my stint as a rugman has finished I plan to get the trans alpine
train across Arthur’s pass to Greymouth. In theory it is going back on myself by about 200 and something km. Its all good though as I fancy a bash at cracking the West Coast.
Tot: 0.581s; Tpl: 0.027s; cc: 12; qc: 28; dbt: 0.0193s; 1; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.3mb