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My birthday week in the South Island

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 We wake up after surviving our night in the shining hotel and get picked up by Lee, ready for our journey back to Dunedin; on the way stopping for Lee’s job and a few things she wanted us to see. As we are travelling down the road three calves are running along the in front of us…Lee being a country girl feels obliged to round up the cattle, yehaa! She tries herself with the car but they just keep running so she heads to the farmers house, I run and knock at the door, a big guy answers, who has the face of a 16 year old and the body of a wrestler…he says thanks and goes back in so Lee is happy with her contribution. We head back on the road and she gives it one more try to get them back in, they end up jumping the fence, (luckily not barbed wire) unfortunately it is the wrong field, oh well, as they say we did our best.


We carried on our road trip; again seeing some beautiful scenery and places, everywhere lee stopped we spent our time finding a spot to sit and chat, taking silly photos, eating or playing in the favourite kind of day! She asked if we wanted to stop and see the world’s biggest chicken and I’m guessing you know the answer. So we stop and it is a giant hedge shaped like a chicken with a big white egg under its bum. I head to stand by the giant chicken to get my photo taken and hear chirping, I’m thinking is this some kind of special effects (maybe in America?) I look and there is a little baby bird who is pretty much bald, very skinny, making every effort to hold up his heavy head and just continuously chirps. At first I thought he wasn’t real, I picked him up and then saw the massacre that had occurred…around the baby bird was about 6 little birds just like him all dead, he was the only survivor! Lee said something had obviously happened to mama bird and they had all fell and that there was nothing we could do because death was inevitable. I gave him a few strokes then placed him under the shade and left him there chirping and trying to hold his head up. I did try to feed him a fly and Lee said that I probably did him a favour because he would of choked to death, oh dear, hehe! We finished our trip going to the beach that had lots of volcanic boulders washed up in all different shapes and sizes; we got a few photos, had a play and headed back after our very eventful and emotional journey!


The family we are staying with have a son and two daughters (Alex, Chloe and Charlotte) Charlotte is getting married in July and it is at Bali, she sent us an invite which we got when we arrived here but she hasn’t met us yet…betting she may regret that but it is far too late to take it back, mwahaha! So we had a few chats about it, work out dates, where we’ll be, money, etc. and realised it is an opportunity not to be missed so we head down to STA travel to see how much a flight would be from Bangkok. They have a great price, so I say to Sam what’s the date of the wedding again…she says straight away the 24th so we think sod it and just book it for two weeks. We return to the house all excited and tell Chloe she asks, “What date do you get there?” We reply the 18th She then says something that is an absolute blow to our very chipper mood, which goes like this “Isn’t Charlottes wedding on the 10th?”


OH MY GOD, SO WE ARRIVE AFTER THE BLOODY WEDDING, WHAT A COUPLE OF TOTAL MUPPETS, can you all bloody believe it (for those of you saying yes…not cool, hehe!) The thing that worried me the most about the whole thing is when she bought us our receipt at STA, it was the way she said these tickets are non-refundable and you can’t change the dates!!!! IT IS LIKE SHE FRICKEN KNEW WE HAD THE WRONG BLOODY DATES!! So Sam rings up and the woman says that she will have to investigate. So we spent the afternoon waiting for her call and long story short (too late) we have to pay for each date change so just change the arrival dates and are now having three weeks in Bali. We have no idea what Sam thinks is happening on the 24thbut I hope it is bloody good and involves me getting something expensive! I’m not too sure the morale to this story, maybe don’t be an idiot!


Friday comes and it is that day that comes once a year for me…no it is not the lets not be a greedy pig day and it is not lets be nice to everyone day…yes you cracked it, it’s my birthday! I am 26 now people, can you bloody believe it! I wasn’t too fussed about the whole occasion if I’m honest but Sam, Chloe and Alex made me a lovely birthday cake. We went to watch Alex play volley ball in a tournament with his school team. After he finished we all went to the chip shop and got the perfect birthday food! When we got back to the house Sam (not my Sam) had bought us all a shot to go down with our chips and a few bottles of wine! We spent the night doing the family thing…drinking, eating, chatting, being mean to one another, play fighting, more eating and having some giggles. I do love family time.


We woke up very early and tiny bit rough to watch the rest of Alex’s volleyball games; we are now his biggest supporter and have names for all his team mates. One of which is called Nigel and is the double of the blonde funny man in ‘Along came Polly’ Brilliant!! Also on this day (remember slightly fragile) I was running to catch a ball and collided with a very tall young man, the result of which was us both falling and hitting the deck. Then later on I was having a conversation and a volley ball smacks me right in the temple…I wanted to cry but was surrounded by Alex’s friends so chose to laugh instead but spent the rest of the day talking a little louder due to the constant ringing in my ear, I MEAN REALLY!!!! Sam (not my Sam) showed us the world’s steepest street; we decide against running up it and just opted for just taking a photo. She then took us to the top of a mountain which had an amazing view of the whole of Dunedin, such a beautiful place. We had a late afternoon walk with the dogs and played a fun game of Frisbee where I ended up rather muddy and ended the night with a homemade shepherd pie, yum!!


As my extended birthday treat on the Sunday we all went ice skating, even poor Sam (not my Sam) who we had forced into it with bribes and everyone’s favourite; if you don’t, that means you don’t love us. She even said at one point “would your mother do this?” to which I replied “of course not” It is an indoor ice rink and has very little people so lots of room to chase each other, have races and do my personal favourite…The Seal (taking a big run up and sliding across the ice on your belly) both Sam and Chloe have terribly bruised knees. When we returned to the house, Sam makes us a big Sunday roast…AMAZZING!!!


Sam’s (not my Sam) job takes her up and down the country so us four young ones have been left holding the fort and with us all being quite active, every night we take the dogs somewhere and take things for us to play with. We headed to the park where we played Frisbee, football, rugby and Alex (he is 14 and loves rugby) enjoys trying to tackle us. Me, Sam and Chloe all ended up with some kind of injuries, bloody boys, hehe! Then the next night we went to the beach, Alex was already having a dip in the sea in his shorts. Me and Sam hadn’t planned for that but both ended up wet from head to toe after a little what Matt Smith would call rough housing, oh dear!


Tomorrow we are heading off to Queenstown and the West Coast for 5days on a little road trip so today we had a little chill and went to see the new Twilight movie at the cinema, we were going to go on my birthday but it was cheaper on Tuesday, I always love a bargain!


See you in Queenstown…


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New Zealand

dunedin, christchurch, lake tekapo, mount cook, Hawks bay, Queens town, Aukland, Wellington, New Zealand