Arrived in Westport mid afternoon after a bus trip which was quite scenic but at the same time annoying as it rained all the way there and that spoilt the scenery somewhat.
Anyway when i arrived it was belting it down and i was drenched just walking from the bus stop to the hostel, arrived at the hostel to find that quite annoyingly i never had enough cash to cover the $20 key deposit so i had to go back out in the rain running around this gloomy little town trying to find an ATM. Got to the room and by this time i think there was only a couple of beds left but result i still managed to score a bottom bunk, im on a pretty good run of staying nice and close to the ground at the moment and long may it continue (touch wood). I had been told that there was not alot to do in Westport which would be 100% correct and i was trying to think why it was i had booked to come here as i new that there was something i wanted to do. any way due to not being a fan of soggy clothing i spent most of the remainder of the day in the hostel, nipped out once or twice to pick up some supplies for dinner and on quick loop of the dismal town. later on in the evening it clicked and the reason i had booked 2 nights here was because 20km down the highway was a good surfing beach with a company that hire out boards but the bus doesnt go down that way and there isnt any cheap accommodation except for camping. So i had my plan for the next day which i was determined to succeed in no matter what the weather.
So the next day i was up, washed and out of the hostel by 9 and round the corner to the i-site (which are like tourist information type places) to try and find out how to get there. politely i asked the woman behind the counter if there was a bus service or anything like that to tauranga bay, "NO" she snapped back perhaps someone had gotten up on the wrong side of the bed this morning.
"is there anyway of getting there" again i politely asked
"you could hire a bike" her only answer
"but is it not like 20km?" i said
so my plan had been foiled by the grumpy woman behind the counter, on my way back to the hostel i bumped into another english guy who had stayed in my room the night before and was also on the same bus as me from Nelson and he suggested that i hitch hike as that's what he had done yesterday and said that its only one straight road all the way there so even if you end up walking you wont get lost. having never hitched a ride anywhere before in my life i was slightly nervy about trying to do such a thing. but decided why the hell not. walked about 3km out of town and got my thumb up and within 10 mins a women picked me up and took me about 1/3 of the way there. i carried on walking for around another 5 mins and a bloke picked me up who was headed to the same place and took me the rest of the way. i hired a board and wetsuit and surfed with varying degrees of success for the following 3 hours or so. the sea was really fierce today and the strong wind made for quite a difficult time, but it was all good fun anyway and there was only 1 or 2 over surfers for most of the time. afterwards i walked along the coast for around 2 or 3 km and went passed a few seal colonies and it was pretty amazing to see them in the wild especially the young cubs who were playing in the rock pools. afterwards i started trying to hitch back to town which turned out to be not as easy as on the way there i ended up walking about half the distance before being picked up by a guy with his massive fluffy dog in the back of his truck and he took me all the way into town for around 5 just in time to settle in by the fire and watch a little lit of tele then off for a great nights sleep in the other than myself empty dorm.
so having gone from one of my worst days that ive had since leaving home on monday, it may well have been followed up by one of the most perfect, and things should only get better for the next week or so as tomorrow is Frans Joseph which is glacier country.
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