Monday, February 10, 2014

Austrian visitor escapes into the wilderness

Monday, February 10, 2014
oldbearnews editor
So before lunch on the 4th, we left the old boy in Dunedin  and we found our way home. While we had a rest day and also saw the Kiwi - and then dropped of Doris and Bernhard at the Airport on the 6th - the other chap with us had a few fabulous days in Dunedin.  His itinerary included a trip to Larnach castle, Penguin colony, Albatross colony, some wildlife center bush area with tall trees and lots of other shrub-greenery (sadly also with the TALLEST tree in New Zealand - some cheeky Australian gum tree at 80 meters height) where the lad kept his cool and found his way back out of the bush - and a day trip out to the Morakei Boulders with lunch in Morakei itself.  Hmmmm we did go there ourselves one day -  pity it was the wrong time for lunch for us - the fish there is famous for its taste and quality!! Snapping a few old buildings and a stop over at the Butterfly house rounded up his exciting time down there.  Then it was time to come back home. The hard way. Via a bus. Which broke down. On a steep hill. It could not get the gears going.  Some unkind person hinted it may well be the extra pounds gained from all the rich food here - but I am sure Wilfried has got THAT sorted.  So in any case while he had fun terrorizing the wild life down south with his camera - we up here - having said good bye to Cousin Doris and Bernhard - are taking life easy.  Mamabear deciding that she wanted to go to work on Friday and catch up with emails so that on Monday she has a easier run and catch up. That left me at home - alone.  I should say - yesterday was Waitangi day - a public holiday so we had a extra day of leave.  Waitangi is all about the coming together of 2 cultures - local maori who signed a binding contract with the Queen (well her local representative) in 1884 and that was the beginning of NZ - so in  away it is our National Birthday celebration! I am sure some kiwis will take issue with this view - but I can't be bothered writing a long epistle on what was or might have been or should be.  In any case it is urm was a holiday for us.  One thing is clear - we did not touch on Maori culture while our guests were here. We could have easily done a full Maori immersion type holiday - and may have seen NZ from a different perspective, and in the process may well have missed many sights - but would have gotten to know some locals better.  Hmmm may need to reflect on that for the next victim - oops visitor, visitor!!!!  :)  
In any case - Friday dawned - mamabear got up early and went to work - leaving me - home alone!!  Feels unreal!   I have the whole house to myself!!   So I did what every self serving home-alone-house-husband does - I chilled a tad and did only what I wanted to do (and that included a water change for all the fish-tanks)!  In-between I got txt updates from the Austrian we left behind in Dunedin - ahhhhh he MISSES us!!   Nope - actually he txt'd to say about the bus - and seeing I was picking him up from the bus station later in the day needed to know a arrival time - we left it that he would txt once leaving Ashburton - which would give me enough time to put on my foundation/mascara/ eyeshadow/ lipstick - nah - just brush the 5 hairs I got left and look semi decent! Mustn't forget to wear some decent clothes as well.  :)  Well he finally made it and we had the usual Friday night fare - fish and chips and some Chinese meal tossed with that.    The next day . . . .

The next day (Saturday)  - he abandoned us again!  hehehe we don't mind sharing him round - honest!!
Wilfried spend Saturday and part Sunday with Elizabeth Peach and did some interesting things with her.  ^^
I won't go  into details - leave it to you - no - them to fill in the blanks :D
It did involve some bread and ducks and blueberries and . .. 

The first decent 'selfie' I have seen since they started.  Or did some one else take this?
A dentist perhaps - hoping for some free advertising? They do look good together.

In any case the young lady has promised to return the visitor unharmed to us - ready for a afternoon of caffee and cake and  fellowship of old Durham street choir members and anyone else who remembered him.  Alistair / Roger / David came along with the Choir master himself!!  No singing ensued and we avoided making them sing for their supper, but a good many laughs where shared. We ended up having far to much food left - not that that is usually a problem with the ravenous kids we own - plus the Austrian - but yeah - dinner became a sort of Caesar Salad - supposedly light and easy. :)  hmmm did we have Pavlova for Dessert as well??

After a good nights sleep - very, very early on the Monday morning - at a time when most decent people still sleep - and avoid getting out of bed - kind Mamabear went and picked up a friend of Wilfrieds and dropped both of them of to the train station.  They are catching a - ok it is - a tourist train. Actually it is the passenger train that goes from Christchurch to Picton and then comes back down from there again. So it travels the rails only twice a day. It does mean that at the halfway point you can leave (that's in Kaikoura) and do walks and go out on the boat and watch the whales and penguins and other assorted fishie's. Then you catch the train back to Christchurch. Makes for a long day!  In any case - given the local weather at the time - they could not go out on the boat - the sea was to rough. However the local walk was rewarded with the sea-lions basking and posing for photos. We had the honor of picking them up from the train station in the evening - but surprise surprise - they were late - again.  Several txt's later - we knew that the train was late away from Picton so they will be late here - so  nooooooo problem. I don't mind smooching with the young mamabear while waiting for the transport wrecking lad to arrive!   ^.0     :)

Turns out - the reason the train was late was because one of the Ferries had a teeny weeny wee mishap with one of their lifeboats and THAT changed the sailing times and THAT meant for the train having to wait for people to disembark from the boat and catch the train to Christchurch!

Late Dinner and catch up then bed.

Have fun
bear print

PS - Wilfried - feel free to suggest edits - -  :)  

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