12th - 16th February (Farewell New Zealand)
Saw this stroke of godlike genius...
Hitch hiked back to Auckland. Didn't do a great deal but did bump into the girls again and went up the skytower with them. Managed to sleep ok despite the fat american snorer! Hitch hiked part of the way to Waitomo but after getting dropped on a motorway junction with nowhere safe to stand decided to go back the other way. A big friendly Samoan giant called Paul took me all the way into Auckland even though it was past his junction. I walked to the harbour and took a boat to the island of Waiheke. It had been hot all morning but of course by the time I got to the beach and put sun cream on a huge cloud came across. The bloke running the hostel is on something. It's a bit of a party zone with seriously loud music. There were no beds available but there was a tent which I managed to sleep for eleven hours in on the first night.
In the morning I set out on a long walk in some scorching sun, eventually I crashed on the beach which prompted clouds and a few spots of rain but God was only playing with me, spent the rest of the day on the beach, and most of the next day on a different beach which I had to walk through a nudist section to get to - not pretty! Considering I have done nothing but laze around it came as a surprise when my back spasmed whilst walking up a hill - it hurt like hell for a few days. I also managed to miss a big patch on my back with the cream so that burnt and peeled.
Back to Auckland yet again. After killing time all morning I went to catch the bus to the airport and was told I would need a taxi as the traffic was so bad the bus wouldn't get there on time. I only had $28 left and hoped I could get by without going to the ATM again. The taxi driver accepted the $28 having started out at $40 because it was on his way home. The eleven hour flight to Santiago was really tedious as the entertainment selection was pretty poor and I didn't have an aisle seat so I couldn't get up and stretch my legs much, also I couldn't sleep. The highlight was the film 'Little miss sunshine' which was very amusing. I put my watch back sixteen hours and landed five hours before I took off!
So the New Zealand adventure was over and the South American one had began. Despite some crappy weather I enjoyed New Zealand and will look back on all the really cool stuff I did there with happy memories - ice climbing, bungy jumping, sky diving, dolphins, penguins, mountains, lakes. Fantastic.