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Saturday, June 29, 2013

North to South

On Saturday, June 29th I woke up and hiked to my bike with all my gear. After arriving at the ferry a bit tired and hungry I found that it had actually been delayed two hours. For a while I sat in the terminal talking with a German dude then waited out on my bike talking to two kiwi army guys. Finally, we boarded and I spent the next three or so hours playing card games with a bunch of kiwis who live on an island in Thailand.

My arrival on the South Island was refreshing but my journey would not be an easy one. I immediately lost my sleeping bag (and found it) and further down the road my battery cover went as well. This, along with a loud whining sound, was probably due to a very steep hill which I sped down, causing excessive vibration, as my little 250cc reached over 120km in a foolish attempt to see how fast it would go.

This, of course, was just the beginning. Even though I now had extra insulation from my sleeping bag tucked in between my chest and front pack, I soon found myself going numb and experiencing intense pain in all my limbs as a result.

Soon after stopping to see the seals at Ohao Point, I ran out of petrol. With no idea how much further it would be to the next town I switched to reserve and rode for what felt like hours. As I was losing all hope of ever reaching civilization, I arrived at an outpost of Christchurch. Laughing aloud with a surreal sense of relief, I puttered up and filled my tank.

That night I arrived at the home of Leanne and Arthur, had a hot meal and gratefully thawed out on the couch. Never again would I underestimate the distances of the South Island... well, almost never.

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