Kia Ora and welcome to the second edition of the CJ weekly. Week two saw James, Vinnie and me explore the picturesque Milford Sound (full blog on it here) and a teeny tiny bit of Queenstown (still SO much more to do and see in Queenstown)! So without further ado (adieu?), here we go for week two!
OUR FAVOURITE PHOTOS
OUR WEEKLY EXPENSES
TOTAL $566.26 (combined - week one and week two)
$344.65 for week two only
OUR WEEK TWO VIDEO
FIVE THINGS WE LOVED
Recycling stations. One of our goals this year is to make a more conscious effort to recycle and we were worried life on the road might make this a bit trickier. But incredibly, it’s actually been the opposite. We have loved all the recycling bins dotted around the South Island and even more so, the designated recycling stations which are set up with 10 or so different recycling bins. Go New Zealand you good thing!
Appreciating the small things. Living in a van is in someways, an introduction to minimalism. We love how previously small things (like showers, clean washing and fresh sheets) now fill us with joy. And we love the fact that we now appreciate them so much more. I don’t ever remember starting a conversation with James back in Perth and saying “isn’t it wonderful being able to shower without our jandals on?” or “isn’t it great having somewhere dry to hang our clothes and towel”, or even “how lucky are we, being able to heat our water”. Take a minute next time you’re in the shower, and find something to be grateful for. Even if it's just the no-jandals situation.
All the friendly folk who take a minute out of their day to come over and meet Vinnie. Especially the lovely family from Iowa that were also travelling in a Kombi!
The free camping facilities at Lumsden. This wee town have generously set up a designated free campsite (for both self contained and non self contained) with benches, a dish washing station and sparkling clean toilets (they’re so clean - word on the Lumsden Street is that Spray and Wipe have approached them and might be filming their next commercial there). Thank you Lumsden.
The Lumsden bakery donating all of their leftover food to us free campers parked up. We were just blown away with their generosity.
$2 week at Pak N Save. I know it’s called the top 5 for a reason but Toffee Pops for $2? Wow. Just wow.
FIVE THINGS WE DIDN'T LOVE
Finding a leak in Vinnie’s roof and then getting 18ml of rain.
Losing my hair brush on the cruise in Milford Sound. If anyone knows where to buy a small Lady Jayne hairbrush please do holler.
The cheeky couple that rocked up at the DOC Moke Lake Campsite at 11pm, didn't pay and then proceeded to park 1.5m away from us so we heard their detailed (and very loud) conversation about pasta. They then left the next morning before we got back from sunrise (7:30am). It’s a shame people want to cheat the camping system, especially when it’s a DOC (Department of Conservation) run camp (only $13 per person per night).
People taking photos of Vinnie and videoing him while we are inside trying to get changed. We LOVE people taking photos of Vinnie, but we LOVE it even more when those people say hello/hi/smile/acknowledge us. Look, they don’t even have to really acknowledge James. He is Australian after all.
Scratching our sandfly bites.
$2 week ending.
THREE THINGS WE FOUND FUNNY
Finally paying for a powered campsite (James was so jazzed talking about all the electronics he was going to charge at the same time!!), and then awkwardly finding out our plug wouldn't fit. Made even more awkward as I’ve lived here for 20 years and never noticed this.
The ranger who looked after the free camping facilities at Lumsden (you may previously recall this from the top five things we liked this week) and him telling us about a local who was extremely opposed to the free camping facility. He said, and I quote verbatim, “I told him to go see a taxidermist”. And the bugger said “what why?”. And I said “Cause you can go and get stuffed”. It took us all our willpower not to laugh. Awesome to have local legends like this guy fighting for free camping facilities. And super awesome that he uses great sayings like this bad boy.
Starting the walk to Lake Marian, and then DOC casually placing a sign two minutes in saying “have you left your lights on”. Of course, we were 100% sure we had turned our lights off, but then once we saw the sign, we dropped down to about 35-40% certainty. After deliberating for as long as we do when we order Subway and both want different flavours but don’t want to pay for two separate six inches, we decided to head back to Vinnie and check. When we got back to Vinnie his lights were of course turned off. But thanks anyway DOC!
PS usually we meet halfway and get a chicken teriyaki footlong. Kind of a win-win but also kind of a lose-lose.
THE WEEKLY TALLY