Sunday, 13 April 2008

Wednesday 5th March 2008

Drive to Queenstown from Naseby
... it's mainly downhill. As I entered the outskirts of Queenstown I could feel the tranquility that Naseby had afforded me drain rapidly away. Sure enough the 'traffic' was backed up through the bottleneck that is the town centre and suddenly there were parking restriction signs all over the shop. Hmm ...

Floating like a Butterfli
After cruising around town trying to find somewhere a little off the main drag I happened upon Butterfli Lodge, which was tended by the remarkably cheery and helpful Gemma, who was an English language teacher so we got along fine after discussing the finer points of Wordsworth's usage of iambic pentameter.

The Future is Orange
After a trip down hill into town to pick up the local bike maps (a brand new edition having been published and brought to the shops this avo – timing Me Shand!) I strode out onto the balcony to be presented with the remarkable sight of the erm Remarkables mountain range. These mountains stand proud opposite Queenstown with Lake Wakatipu nestling peacefully inbetween. The sunset is spectacular as it dips down behind the big peaks behind Queenstown and illuminates The Remarkables with a Martian-esque soft orange light. Best served with a glass of Shiraz.

Queenstown by night
For some reason my first evening in larger townships seems to always be the biggest and Queenstown was no exception. I headed to one of Gemma suggestions, twas called Bardot, a fine wine establishment. It had dropped a bit nippy and Bardot looked homely and welcoming with a huge natural fire, after seeing off a very nice Aussie couple from Sydney on a works jolly for the weekend I headed to a couple o' other bars where I met two citizens of the United States of America – Stacey and Adriana. We exchanged tales of wanton redundancy. They were an odd couple, Adriana was a bit more relaxed but Stacey always needed to work to a schedule. For the next couple of hours I chipped in along with a few Kiwi blokes (who were working on another big film set around these parts (Wolverine?)) - trying to convince the girls to change schedule and spend more time in the countryside and NZ rather than flying off to Sydney on a typically US-style whistle-stop tour of Oz. Adriana was compliant, Stacey looked mortified. Terry's argument was that these girls were from NY city and so why on earth would they want to visit Sydney for a large chunk of their trip when they live in a massive city already? He was bemused and suggested they spent time seeing things that they couldn't see at home, ie the Coramandel Peninsular etc. He was a rugged, suntanned, stubble-faced fella around about 45 years old, he was spot on.

Eating is Cheating
Fatally forgot to have anything to eat and the night ended exchanging wrestling moves with a big Brummie lad who was dressed as WWF wrestler and singing Oasis greatest song: Master Plan. Does it get any classier?!

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