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Published: April 8th 2017
The drive to Christchurch couldn't be done quick enough! I got to see Julian and Jem again basically a year to the day! I was so excited!!! Before we met them we had a quick pop into Christchurch to do a little sight seeing- we didn't do to much as we knew we would be back here before we fly to Australia. We saw the scars still left on the landscape from the earthquake six years ago, as well as some of the newer ones. Next stop was the pub for a well deserved catch up and a beer! It was so good to see everyone and makes me miss them even more!
When we got home Julian wanted to hear schnitzels death rattle for himself and took her out for a spin! In agreement it needed looking at he took it to the garage for us the next day- panic over its just the heat guard and with a little tinkering it's not gone but it's a lot better.
Good enough to start the long journey over Arthur's pass to get to the west coast! Unfortunately the weather was not so great, so the views were some what hindered. We
got the idea of it though and it is pretty amazing!
We arrived a bit bedraggled in Greymouth to get some shopping and re fuel. We 'accidentally' came across the Monteiths brewery and decided it would be rude not to check it out and make sure the apples were good!! Feeling a little more human after a much needed beer in front of the open fireplace it was off to Hokitika to purchase some lovely Jade!
I have to admit I was a fuss pot here and couldn't see one I liked for ages- when buying Jade you can't buy it for yourself so we brought each other's, you also have to wear it for 24 hours before you gift it to another, this gives them some of your positive energy! The different designs also have different meanings. Jo went for a mix of he triple twist and the Koru. In short she is stuck with me forever and will grow and live in harmony! I went for the fish hook which gives you a lot of good juju and safe travel over water- I need all the help I can get after he past few weeks!! When we finally
got out of the shop we needed somewhere to stay! The place we came across was an old abandoned mental asylum! No you haven't miss read this- an old abandoned mental asylum.
So we rocked up and I went to check us in, I'm not gonna lie I wasn't ecstatic about the situation but Jo was loving it. The reception looked like no one has touched it since the 70's. True clock was still ticking, there was a hot cup of tea on the side, the radio was playing but not a soul was in sight. I rang the bell and waited- no one came. I rang again and then out of nowhere came this little girl! (I'm not a happy bunny at this point!) so we eventually checked in and picked a spot. The communal area is as advertised- an abandoned mental asylum! Genuinely you could have filmed a horror movie in it. Thus pictures do it no justice! Still we stayed. It even had its own resident mouse in there kitchen. We met another two couples who were staying there but actually in he buildings not a car (bugger that) and had a really good evening. The highlight
being scaring the life out of passing Japanese tourists off to the glow worm caves close by. We pressed our faces against the glass and screamed at them like mental asylum patients!! Laughed- we cried.
In the morning we went for one last look round and really for a feel for the size of the place. The maintenance guy told us how it was literally just left when it closed with beds still made, linen rooms full of brand new linen and boxes of unworn nurses uniforms. This place had its own cemetery and chapel along side loads of out houses and wards- still can't believe we stayed there!
I couldn't get away quick enough to go and see Hokitika gorge and Franz Joseph glacier today! They didn't disappoint either! They were beautiful. We were so exhausted after we pitched for an early night at the bottom. We're off to Foxes glacier and lake Wannaka in the morning! Keeping the mental in the asylum Lauren and Jo
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