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

Lake Ohau

NEW ZEALAND | Sunday, 22 January 2006 | Views [932]

            Today was my 16th day in the Land of the Maoris. I leave tomorrow and it’s going to be so hard going home. I woke up at about 7:00 when our boat, the Milford Wanderer, started moving. The water was very rough, but it was cool. Breakfast was ready, so I went up and had a couple of bowls of cereal. We were about a kilometre out to sea it was very misty. Milford Sound is so beautiful! I don’t see any reason why anyone would not want to come here. As we started heading back in, we got up close and personal with a waterfall. I didn’t want to leave, but I had to. There was an underwater observatory across the water, but that wasn’t on our agenda. I’ve never seen so many waterfalls before. At 9 AM, it came time to leave the amazingly beautiful Milford Sound. It’s one of the most striking places I probably ever will see. It was a very nice cruise. We got off and looked at our pictures that the skipper took yesterday. Then we went back to our coach. We began driving along the amazing

Milford Road
again. It was still raining. It is just so green out. We crossed the 45°S latitude sign again. I had another opportunity to photograph it, but I fell asleep along the way. Only New Zealand, Argentina, and Chile cross this geographic centre point. I was just in complete awe of the scenery. I saw even more waterfalls this morning because it had been raining. We also went through Homer’s Tunnel again. After driving along
Milford Road
, we stopped for a snack break in Te Anau, which is where we stopped yesterday. At the gift shop I got a New Zealand made jacket and some postcards. I now have two jackets and a postcard for just about every place I’ve visited. I got fish and a Diet Coke and enjoyed the view of Lake Te Anau. I even got a picture of myself with Lake Te Anau behind me. After leaving Te Anau, we headed back toward Queenstown, going around the remarkable Remarkables. They are quite remarkable I reckon. We had to drop off Adam at the Queenstown Airport. He went river boarding with me. We’ll all miss him. Lunch was in Arrowtown, right near Queenstown. Arrowtown looks kind of like an American old west town. I got fish and chips for lunch and then went to one of the shops and got a piece of pounamu, which is what the Maoris call jade. I carry it around with me in honour of Jade. I love her! I also got more postcards. I looked at more of the jade carvings before it was time to leave. Before leaving, I got a picture of a 15 km sign, to show that New Zealand uses the metric system. We were off to Lake Ohau, in which it will be our final night. About 20 minutes into our drive, we stopped at a fruit shop. I got some apricots, cherries, and oranges; all for about $1.75. It’s one of the cheapest buys for the amount I got. I’ve eaten a lot of fruit here. Our next stop, Lake Ohau, was about three hours away. I’m sure going to miss the New Zealand countryside. I wish I could build a home out here, marry Jade, and live happily ever after, just like a fairy tale! I love this place with its vast open space. I took a nap along to way and listening to my music, thinking “oh, what will I do? I’m sure going to miss this place!” As we began driving along Lake Ohau, I saw the snow-capped mountains in the distance. I couldn’t see Mt. Cook because it was covered by clouds. The Maoris call Mt Cook, Aoraki, which means “cloud piercer.” We got to our lodge at about 5:45 and dinner was slated for 6:30. It was so cool because there were no other buildings around. Mike told me it’s the perfect place to see the stars. I put my stuff in my room, which I shared with Hugo. I only noticed today that my flight leaves at 4 PM tomorrow. As a result, I’m not going to get to join everyone else for dinner tomorrow night. It’s going to be so emotional going home, and I really wanted to join in on the dinner tomorrow. For tonight’s dinner, I had lasagne and steamed vegetables. After dinner, I rode a little bike around, played soccer, and talked with the girls. At one point, I almost broke a window with the soccer ball. Good thing I didn’t break it! It would be hard to fix out here. Josh then asked me if I could walk up the hill with him because he wanted a picture of Mt. Cook. So, I threw on my jacket and started hiking up the hill. It was very exerting. We were hiking up through weeds, but we didn’t have to worry about snakes, as there are no snakes in New Zealand. We hiked probably 500 meters before we reached our highest point, doing several rest and photo stops along the way. I got a nice photo of me looking over Lake Ohau. We couldn’t see Mt. Cook from up there though. Tomorrow, there’s an optional flight over Mt. Cook, but I’m probably not going to do it because it will take most of the remainder of my money. But, I’ll see. We started heading down because it was getting dark. About 10 minutes later, we were back down and we heard the cheers from our mates. Kris bought me a Diet Pepsi for my effort. I also played pool with Louise. She beat me because Josh helped her. By then, the stars were out. By golly, was it beautiful! I haven’t seen that many stars since the meteor shower in third grade. There was no moon, so I saw even more stars. Mike pointed out the difference between the Southern Cross and the fake Southern Cross. I had a relaxed night. I talked with Lisa, danced with Louise, and mailed postcards to Holly and Jemma. I will sure miss them. I also mailed a postcard of Mt. Cook to Mr. Hanley. He’ll like that. It’s so beautiful out here. What will I do when I get home? One thing I’ve really learned here is that you need a lot of adrenaline and an even bigger heart. You cannot be a wuss and visit New Zealand. Mary then gave me a back massage, and after hanging out for awhile longer, I went to my room at about 1 AM. I sure wish I could stay another night. I have another day tomorrow, and I fly home. Have a good night.

Tags: Relaxation

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