Leaving North Island and sailing South.

Since arriving in New Zealand the ‘moving on’ to South Island has always been a definitive point. In a way its meant we’ve survived the first 2 weeks of our trip; we haven’t killed each other, changed our minds or yearned to leave.

 

It hasn’t been plain sailing though. The kids aren’t angels when they are tired and bored on the long car journeys. When Rosie’s Kindle runs out of battery we hear “I’m hungry”. Quickly followed by a persistent winge about how hot, hungry or bored she is. “Look out the window Rosie, how amazing is New Zealand? Can you see the Volcano behind the rainforest?”. “I don’t want to look at New Zealand, I’m hungry”. Rubes has learned to ignore it for only so long before he’s joining in and start winding her up. But, who can blame them? They’re not driving the Automatic 10-15 yr old hire car of the year (actually it could technically be last century). Whatever. Its awesome- in a crappy, velour interior, complete with ‘tape’ player and CB radio button in-car entertainment system. Whilst trying to tune the radio in somewhere west of Rotorua, which you have to do a lot in NZ, we discovered that one of the buttons on the car radio switches to a CB radio channel. Suddenly we’re tuned into local truckers….”Yeaah, I’m stuck behind a crappy dark blue, ancient Nissan Sunny, going slow…”. Haha! They didn’t say that, but have you ever heard of a car radio that had a CB button?!

 

Our InterIslander ferrySo we are now on the Interislander ferry to Picton and leaving Wellington behind. It’s a little sad, as again we are moving into the unknown; something we’ve done almost everyday for 2 weeks. Wellington is a really great city. In some ways it’s been our favourite so far. The people here have been great and it almost has a London feel about it with the city commuters and business areas, mixed in with a bohemian independent quarter around Cuba Street. What we really liked was the real lack of well-known chain shops. Back home you could be in any town in England, as small, independent stores are forced out by High Street Chains. We’ve seen some great things here, like the Museum of New Zealand and the Botanical Gardens; but the whole city has so many areas to visit and explore. April has even managed to find an anorak! However, although the sole purpose for an anorak is for it to keep you dry, the guy on the till in Mac Pac said “Just so y’know, its not 100% waterproof, OK.”….. What’s that about?

 

So, as the ferry pitches and rolls its way out of Wellington, what are we all doing? April is reading a book (One Year off: Leaving it all behind for a Round-the-World journey with our children. By David Cohen), Ruben is watching a film on his Kindle and Rosie is watching kids TV in the children’s area (CBeebies!).

 

Update: Oh no! Rosie has just come over looking pale. She manages to hold back long enough for me to hastily empty out a carrier bag over the floor so she could be sick. Thankfully, the man from the café has brought over a cup of ice and some sick bags. What a pro. It’s almost like he’s done this before. Then, as I stood up to take Rosie out onto deck for some fresh air, we hear this over the public address system: (In a tired Kiwi accent), “Ahhh, Ladies and Gentlemen. Conditions in the Cook Straight are less than favourable, so please use the hand rails for your own safety when moving around the ship.” Great! Just what we need with a seasick child!  In fact, there are lots of seasick people. This may be a long 2-hour crossing !

 

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