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Published: December 29th 2009
For our Christmas Holidays, we rented a Bach in a small town on the West Coast called Raglan. We had heard lots of good things about the place leading up to it, and for the most part, it lived up to the hype.
We stayed there from December 22nd to the 26th, but had some other things planned during those few days. On December 23rd, we went Black Water Rafting in the Waitomo Caves, which is a 2 hour tube ride in an underground waterway. It's an acitivity that is exclusive to this part of the world.
You go out in groups of 12 (including 2 tour guides), and navigate these massive caves. We got launched over waterfalls and there was stretches of the trip where the cave above us was lit up with glow worms, which is sadly the closest thing I got to Christmas lights over the Holidays. I also learned that glow worms aren't worms at all - they're actually mosquito larva with radioactive crap that glows a green color. I can see why they stuck with 'glow worms' though... much easier to market.
The rest of our time in Raglan was spent either relaxing
at the cottage or at some of the beaches in the area. We got in the water on both Christmas Eve and Christmas day, and had a makeshift Christmas Dinner of steak and potatoes.
I had to call 111 (NZ version of 911) on Christmas Eve however on our next door neighbour. I was watching Cops (oh, the irony) at around 11pm on the 24th when I heard some banging and screaming next door. I snuck out on our deck and listened to a man and a woman scream back and forth for a few minutes until I heard a couple of childrens voices enter the room. The man, who was obviously drunk (and not with holiday cheer I might add), ended up turning his anger on one of the kids and I saw him slam the poor children up against the wall and start to knock him around. The cops showed up a few minutes later and I'm not exactly sure what happened - but I hope he spent Christmas Day locked up somewhere. I wouldn't even feel bad if he got sodomized.
After we left Raglan, we had a large amount of land to cover in
On our way to Wellington.
order to get to Wellington by the 29th, in order to take the InterIslander Ferry down to the South Island. We got there with a day to spare and spent the extra time checking out the city - the second biggest in New Zealand behind Auckland.We did a little shopping, saw a few sights and packed up all of our belongings for the ferry ride.
The ferry ride itself was pretty mundane. The lowlight was definately a cheesy live band in the lounge area called "Tommy and the Fallen Horses". The lead singer was the most cliche'd band member I've ever seen, and listening to him belt out offkey lyrics over a drum machine and acoustic guitar was almost enough to make me jump overboard and swim the rest of the way. His album cover featured him (shirtless) with candles surrounding him, and he might even have been in a tub. Needless to say, I did not buy a copy. I don't think anyone did actually.
That brings us to today, which is our second day on the South Island. We are making our way down to Queenstown for New Year's Day, as we are booked to go
bungee jumping at 4pm. This means we have a lot of driving to do, but the views seem to be even nicer on this side of the country. We were lucky enough to drive past a giant seal colony on the coast during our travels yesterday, and today's trip should take us through similar conditions except with packs of penguins and albatross.
I hope everyone had a great Christmas and they enjoy the last few days of 2009. I miss everyone a lot.
P.S - Go Canada in the WJHC.
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