Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Rockin' At Woodstock

On Sunday we waited until the afternoon for our walk, because of the forecast that the weather would be so much better then. Just as well we took the waterproof ponchos. I'm not sure it has stopped raining since. It is now Monday and we have just seen the evening weather forecast. Wind blowing up from the South (that's where Antarctica lives), bringing very reduced temperatures and snow on higher ground (we have just transferred from Hokitika at sea level, to Hanmer Springs, where the centre of town is at 365 metres (easy to remember) and the walking much, much higher – I believe our favourite waterfall walk takes us over 800 metres.

Bit of a cock-up on the navigation front and a different journey from the one I mentioned a couple of days ago. We did in fact go as far north as Greymouth before turning inland. As far as we know we did not, this time, cause any tornadoes. And we did not, as I had informed you, go through the once-flattened Murchison. We did, as predicted, pass through Reefton. Reefton bills itself as “Town of Light” because it was the first town in the Southern hemisphere to generate and distribute its own electricity.

The navigation officer is now in the brig. But I have joined her there because when we got to Hanmer, we found that I had not booked us any accommodation. I can't imagine how that happened because when we plan our journey round NZ, months before, I book one place, then when it has been confirmed, I book the town we are moving on to, et cetera – and I have definitely booked next weeks accommodation, back with Denise (of Oxford) and Robin.

Still, we managed to find a new motel with space available. In fact we have a lovely, spacious room, much better than any other we have encountered in Hanmer before. The only snag is that our cooking facilities consist solely of a microwave and a toaster.

Going back to Sunday's walk. We managed 18 wet kms and rewarded ourselves with an evening trip out to Woodstock for the music. Woodstock is a small community a few kms outside Hokitika. Every Sunday night at the Woodstock Inn, there is a jam session. Usually a bunch of local regulars and members of the music club, but I believe anybody can join in and there are instruments available to play. But last night the club were rehearsing the tunes they are to perform at next weekend's Wild Food Festival, so the format was slightly different, with no opportunities for a stranger to join in. Thank goodness.

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