On the way to Christchurch I passed some of the iconic scenes of the South Island of New Zealand. No use what so ever, as the complete days travel we had a heavy fog. The bus drivers talked of the grand view over Lake Pukaki and Lake Tekapo to the mountain range in which Mount Cook is located. Didn't see a thing.
Once in Christchurch I got to the hostel I had booked in and I reckon I got a fairly good choice. Not a raving party hostel, as my money is slowly going down and I want to be able to sleep at night, but close enough to the city centre. The only down side is that the nearest cheap supermarket is about 30 minutes walk away. Bit more exercise then.
The day of the interview came and I thought I had stuffed it up completely. The boss interviewing me is from exactly the same place in Germany I am from. Füssen to be precise and he knows my ski instructor boss at home (Hanse) personally (or did a few years ago). Half the interview was about the actual job and half was about how things are at home.
Shortly after the interview I got an email asking if I wanted the job and that I could have it. Without much mucking around I accepted and am looking forwards to working on the snow fields for four months.
After getting the job situation sorted out I was a bit more relaxed about my financial situation, but one thing I was sorely missing was a car. Spending a couple of months in Australia with one showed me what sort of freedom you can get with only an own vehicle. Expenses, too, mind you. A rough calculation of my old car in Oz got me to a five digit sum over the course of the entire time I had spent there. But I wouldn't have traded what sort of things I managed to do with it. So the week after the interview I had a look around cars. In the beginning I just went to dealers, but after viewing a few cars that backpackers had I expanded in to that seller field, too. Turned out it was good that I did, as a lot of backpackers are currently fleeing the cold and winter of the South Island to go back home in to summer in the Northern Hemisphere or the tropics. Absolute buyers market at the moment, which reflected in the prices. Also I had driven a few cars of dealers and the last one I looked at was a piece of garbage. Mind you, he only wanted 1700$ for it, but that probably reflects the condition of the thing. In the end I purchased a Honda Odyssey 2003 Model from two German backpackers. All is already set up for camping and I can sleep the nights away in the back. Once purchased I got a check on it done and only needed to repair things worth 200$.
Once those days had passed I wanted to get out and explore the surrounding are of Christchurch a bit more. I was getting sick of the interior city and needed to see a bit more. Unfortunately the days following saw a lot of rain and cold weather come in, not the ideal conditions for hiking. The Southern Lights were showing up again, too, but no luck with the clouds hanging above. Once a day with a bit of sunshine arrived I took a quick drive to the beach and had a walk there. The next day I popped by a lake south of Christchurch, Lake Ellesmere. The weather was biting cold and the wind was pushing the car around, so after a very short walk I hopped back in and drove back to Christchurch and the warm hostel.
The next day I was starting to get fed up, so I packed all the warm clothes I could fit in to my bag and headed of to the gondola on the other side of Christchurch. Didn't take that, but walked up next to it, safe in the knowledge that should it start to pour down I had a fast way of getting down. The weather held, but it was still freezing in the wind. The Southern Alps are covered in snow, which is hopefully a good indication of the season to come, and even the hills near to Christchurch that I was walking around on had a light covering of snow. After getting to cold I walked back down, hopped in to the car and decided to finally update the blog again.
Currently in a nice warm room in the hostel felling good at having gotten some exercise done.