I am reverting to my old ways again..... it much be in anticiaption of the departure in 18 hours time but it was a case of not getting a good night sleep again. Had a great chat with Benjaman a young French guy in the backpackers and headed to bed after a few coffees. I should really know at this stage in my life that this is not a good idea especially when the loo is a good 200 yard dash., I think I spent the time worrying that I would need it and that kept me awake! Anyhow I did eventually manage a good six hours again awoke to an incredible morning. Met a lovely English couple at brekkie who were on a six month sabattical doing volunteer work in nature reserves in NZ, Thailand and The Philippines. They work together and both asked the boss could they take the time off. He did not initially know they were a couple so it could have been an awkward one if the boss had refused one of them. Anyhow they are on the same flight as I am to Sydney tomorrow on their way to the Phuilippines.
Decided that I would leave the Olive Grove and head back towards Moeraki town and the lighthouse where there wasa colony of Yellow Eyed Penguins." Dont go near the noraml path" Kim the Hostel owner told me.. "Go right and past the lighthouse".Nothing like the local knowledge casue I was rewarded hugely.. There were seals and sea lions and then I stumbled across two yellow eyed penguin chicks. As I went further I saw the whole colony on an island but I could not get up close and personal but did get pics with the zoom. I was really happy now casue I had seeen most of the wildlife that I could with the exception of dolphins and whales..... not a good time of year and secondly I was in tooootally in the wrong part of the country!
I was trying to figure out where the best place would be to stay for my last night. I had heard that a lot of motels were full on the outskirts of Christchurch so I settled on Ashburton.. an hour from the airport. I am now reclining by the said of the swimming pool in the blazing sunshine and it nearly 17.30. On the way here I was passing through fairly unexceptional landscapes when I was flying around a corner into a town called Timaru when I spotted on the side of a big shed... Mulcahys Sheep and Wool! Now there was no way I was not gonna stop. I got talking initially to a guy called Bob and said my name was Mulcahy.. "I'll bring ya to the boss" says he! and before I knew it I was talking to both Barry and Terry Mulcahy who act as merchants for wool trade and they gave me a bit of their family history.. Apparently they are related to some Mulcahy who had a run in with Elizabeth 1st. Jeez and I can only go back as far as the start of the 1900's with my crowd! I can also report that the "good looking gene" was no where in evidence with the Mulcahy name in the Southern Hemispere either, so I think we will just accept the genetic make up we were destined to have! They were unusual Kiwis in that they have travelled theri own land extensively and even exported their eldest brother to Copenhagen!
So my plan for the evening is to try and download some more pics and then get the bag sorted out. I will then do one final blog re my other observations of NZ and my comments on same. I hope that no one will be offended by my musings. Thanks to one and all for the positive comments and I hope that I gave you some idea as to what this country is like and the huge variety of opportunities for exploring and losing yourselves in this wonderful land!
Its been an absolute blast from beginning to end and I have been incredibly lucky with the whole experience here.. people I met, travel mates and what I have seen and done!.
Hmmmm.. Now now I must really find the number of my "friendly" bank manager to sort out the loan for the return trip!! Scheduled trip home is with Quantas on the Airbus double decker A380 I think.. Christchurch to Sydney. Sydney to Singapore and then straight to London with an hour to grab the connection to Cork! I may not be very coherent for a few days! Apologies in advance but thanks for sharing it with me!