We’ve done our time on South Island, and got up at 6am this morning to catch the ferry to the North Island. This weekend is the end of the summer holidays so the ferry was split between Kiwis ending their holidays, and international tourists in the middle of theirs. The crossing took 3 and a half hours, but after lots of practice with long car journeys, it seemed to go in a flash! No sooner had we driven on in Picton than we were driving off in Wellington – to a cold wind and light drizzle.
We’d booked our hostel ahead, the Wildlife House, which is a 5 storey tower block, painted with huge zebra stripes. Once we were inside all pretence at themes had gone out the window, and it was just another big, city hostel. But it was clean, had a huge kitchen/lounge, and free internet access. So we were able to catch up with most of our emails, while the girls played on the CBeebies website. We’re not keen on staying in city hostels, because they are always much bigger, and seem more cramped than hostels in the countryside. Perhaps its just the absence of green space around them, but whatever it is, we all feel better when we’re away from the cities – in north America, Australia and here in New Zealand.
In the evening we went out for an Indian meal – we just needed a break from cooking for ourselves! We decided that we’d earned a night out, and also that it was good practice for our Asian diet (I know, that’s a pathetic excuse, and besides we’re not going to India, but we needed to justify it to ourselves somehow!). Its only two weeks now until we fly to Singapore, so we’re starting to get hunger pangs for every type of Asian food. But, ask the girls and they’ll tell you the best bit was going into the kitchen to look inside the Tandoor oven. Although we’re not even in Asia yet, we’ve started to learn new things about it (in all the times I’ve eaten in Indian restaurants in Britain, I’ve never once seen a tandoor, let alone had the kids-tour of the kitchen). And, boy was the curry good. We’re going to have to put “curries” somewhere onto our list of ‘What we have missed most about home”.