“The most beautiful moments always seemed to accelerate and slip beyond one’s grasp just when you want to hold onto them for as long as possible.” ― E.A. Bucchianeri
Yes, sadly all good things do reach their inevitable conclusion. My last days in Auckland slid by pretty quickly. I’d definitely recommend the art gallery to anybody passing through the area. The museum is also fantastic – a long walk but definitely worth it if you’re at all interested in Maori culture. I’m now reunited with Kieran , Melissa, Anna and Hannah back in Brisbane. Anna and Hannah have been doing their medical elective in a southern, coastal region of PNG so it will be fascinating to learn about their escapades of the last six weeks; it sounds like they were pretty much up to their necks in the religious fanaticism! It seems like months since I left Papua New Guinea now. New Zealand has been such a whirlwind! Despite my initial complaints (mostly concerning the ominous feeling that I was stepping back into the English “summer” climate), I can see myself living in New Zealand. The juxtaposition with my time in PNG has probably contributed largely to this secure, ‘homely’ sentiment! In fact out of all of the places I’ve visited It’s probably the country I’d most like to return to, excluding visiting relatives in South Africa/Zimbabwe of course! A trip to the south Island will have to be incorporated into my travels at some point in the future. But enough of that for now…bring on Australia!
It’s strange how much you can miss people that you’ve only known for a week. The others left in Wellington to carry on down to the south Island. I’m so frustrated that I’m not going to get a chance to see the south Island – If I was reorganising the trip I would have arranged to go down, but you can’t do everything, I guess! I’m now back in Taupo, alone again. I should really make an effort with the people in my hostel but I just can’t see the point; I’m leaving early in the morning. The ‘nomads’ hostel I’m staying at is slightly cheaper than the ‘base’ hostel from the last stay in Taupo but not quite as central which is irritating. I miss friends from home, I miss the family (who I haven’t spoken to in weeks now) and I miss my travelling companions of the past week. Taupo seems a little empty without them!
Instead of moping about I decided to do a three hour hike to ‘Haku’ waterfalls and I stopped off at the hot springs on the way back for a quick dip. The springs are also a pretty laid back way of meeting new people…I got chatting to a Dutch group and a raging hippy from Colorado took us to a more secluded hot waterfall just up the river.
The blur is actually steam coming off the water! As hot as a sauna!
Touchdown in Auckland, New Zealand, with a strange sense of déjà-vu from the British “summer”. Sounds like I’ve missed the worst of the weather, though. There was a tornado here around an hour before I arrived which actually killed a few people, according to the bus driver. I found my way to the ‘Nomads Fat Camel’ hostel; I’m sharing a dorm with around 16 girls. It’s like university halls but with each small room having two bunk beds! I’m debating whether to go on the hostel’s bar crawl tonight. It’s tempting, but after waking up successively at 04:00 and 04:30 over the last two mornings my energy levels are pretty depleted. I’ve got another early start tomorrow so I’ll most likely just be anti-social this evening. I’m going to book to stay here for my last night when I return to Auckland, as it’s incredibly cheap, so that would be a better time to go out.
After wandering about for a couple of hours I’m getting a flavour of the ‘hobbit’ fever that’s gripping the nation, with the film being released on the 12th. I think it will be unavoidable to make a trip to the cinema next week – it would almost be rude not to!