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Many Adventures of a Nomadic Poet A young poet with Asperger's makes travel his passion, and away he goes...

Wellington

NEW ZEALAND | Sunday, 15 January 2006 | Views [857]

Though the mud

Though the mud

            I had another adventurous day in New Zealand. This morning, I woke up at 8 AM, got dressed and walked down to the lobby for breakfast. There was no hot food at this hotel, so I stuck to cereal. There are a lot of cereals here that they don’t have back home, like Weet-Bix. After eating, it was time for my quad bike tour. I wanted to go on the 1:00 tour yesterday, but Mike changed it. At first I didn’t want to change it, but I later opted for the 9 AM tour so I could have the whole day to myself afterward. The instructor picked us up at the hotel and told us it was about a 50 minute drive to the ATV course, so I just relaxed and enjoyed the beautiful scenery that this country has to offer. I was hoping today to get a picture of the South Island from the North Island, but it wasn’t clear today, either. I’ll be down there tomorrow though. We got to the course and we had to put on special pants, jackets, gum boots, and gloves. The instructor took us out where we all had our own quad bike. It immediately gave me flashbacks of Arizona when I used to ride Uncle Bob’s quad bike. I sure miss those days! We were showed the controls and how to change our gears and all that good stuff. Then we went through a practice course. I was nervous at first because I hadn’t ridden an ATV in about 12 years! I almost tipped over a few times, but I started to get the hang of it. I almost went over an edge at one point, but the instructor helped me out. By the middle of the course, I was totally in the groove. I was riding fast through the water and really enjoying the ride. All while we were riding, our instructor took pictures of us with each of our cameras. The whole ride lasted about an hour and a half. At the end, I raced past Mary to get back to the yard first. It made me realize how much I miss quad biking. Back at the shop, they had complimentary scones. They were so good, that I had three of them. There was also Milo, which is an Australian chocolate milk mix. Before leaving, I also got a free Diet coke. There was no change and I only had a $50 bill, so he let me have it. People are so nice out here! Before the drive back to Wellington, the instructor drove us to the top of the hill for a photo stop. I’ve taken about 400 pictures already and I’m only through half of my trip. I have room for plenty more though. After the instructor drove us back to the hotel, he picked up the other group. I realized I had forgotten my sunglasses. So, I called the quad bike place and asked if they could give them to Jacki, and they said they would. So, I wasn’t sure what to do. I left the hotel and started walking around Wellington. I stopped at the internet café for awhile and checked my messages. I wanted to do the free parliamentary tour, so I decided to walk up there. I got a soda at the gas station and replied “cheers” as a way of saying “thank you” the New Zealand way. I got more pictures of the Beehive as I walked toward it. The tour didn’t start until 3:00, so I had to hang around for a little bit. I got a postcard in the shape of the Beehive and sent it to Nora. It will have a special postmark saying it was sent from New Zealand Parliament. I also got another oddly shaped postcard for myself. At 3 PM, my tour began. I couldn’t take my camera inside for security reasons. I had also wondered if I should have worn pants instead of shorts inside since it’s a government building, but the tour guide said that it didn’t matter. Our guide took us through the debating hall and the Hose of Representatives. I learned that citizens of New Zealand get two votes: one for the governing body, and another for the division. The tour was over at 4:00. It was a very informative tour. Then, I decided to stroll around Wellington for a few hours. I stopped at McDonalds’s for lunch, getting my usual fries and nuggets, and then walked around. In one of the bars, I caught a glimpse of the Denver Broncos winning against the Patriots. I bet Sheri is excited! I never thought I’d see American football here in New Zealand. I thought people hated it everywhere else. I walked to the man-made beach and wanted to put my feet in the water, but I saw like six jellyfish, so I decided not to. At 6:30, I walked back to the room. I saw some of our group members walking for dinner. However, I wasn’t dressed nice, so I decided to go back and changed into some pants. I lost track of them, as a result. I tried to join the other group at the Chinese restaurant around the corner, but one of the girls was rude to me and didn’t want me there, so I left. I found out the other group was at Molly’s so I went down there. I was really upset about what happened, but the group I was with told me that they enjoyed my company, and I thanked them and told them I feel the same about them. I ordered fish & chips, and afterward, I got a ginger beer, which is non-alcoholic. We hung around and chatted for awhile. Rose and I decided to try the vertical bungee jump. Well, it’s not really a jump. It was $40 and it was really awesome. We were shot up to the top and got spun around. It was a great way to see all of Wellington. New Zealand is definitely the world’s adventure capital, and I’m going to go home a total dare devil! After that, we started to head back. The guys bought a lot of liquor and decided to booze it out at the room instead of at the bars. Everyone was like, all crazy. I had a tiny bit of rum with Coke and decided to call it a night early. The guys and girls were making a lot of noise down the hall, so I thought I’d hang out with them for awhile. Everyone was really going crazy after drinking way too much. At midnight, the team and I went back to our rooms. It’s my last night on the North Island, but I’ve loved every minute of it! New Zealand as a whole is fantastic! Tomorrow, I’m off to the South Island. I can’t wait to see the glaciers and actually go up on them. Well, I have an 8 AM ferry tomorrow, so I’m going to sleep. See you on the South Island tomorrow night.

Tags: adventures

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