Saturday, June 22, 2013

Up to the minute post, 7 days late

Uh, it's been awhile.
But in my defense! I just got wifi....
So I moved again, I'm now living with Robert and Dan, coworkers from my store's hunting department.
We have tons of fun and our house is super awesome.
I dig this place

The Lakeview from the lounge

It's as close to a cabin in the woods as you could get in the city limits.
The homestead

Wood shed, carport, and hill behind the pad

Rob is an amazing cook from Louisiana and Dan is the dancinest man, and a queenstown native.
Dan and Robert and the hind end of an unfortunate deer

In our first week, we blew through all the quotes from every will ferrel movie, butchered a deer in the kitchen, and had dance parties to keep warm until our fireplace got fixed.

In between dance moves, venison is made 

These pictures are funny if you can imagine the dialogue from the luau scene in Forgetting Sarah Marshall

I could be pretty happy living here for the next year. In fact, my new house and roomies made my decision even tougher than I thought it would be...But I've decided to come home instead.
I'm sure I'll miss this guy

And see what else I can scheme up...
There's a lot of places I'd like to live in the world....
And, If all else fails, well, NZ will still be here. I think I could possibly cajole my way back here if I decide to.
Meanwhile, a proper Cali summer sounds amazing.
Also, I'm truly homesick. I'm not lonely, I'm not having a bad time, I just miss the amazing people back home. I could travel the world and not find the same caliber of peeps. Ev-ar.
So, my car was in an accident a few weeks ago, and instead of getting it fixed the insurance company has decided to just pay me for the value of the car.
Yeah. jackpot!
I won the stupid decision lottery.
So I'm sans car and waiting on my payout.
With only a few months to go till my plane ride home, I've decided to not buy a new car and spend my insurance check traveling.
I think I'll either go to Bali for a few weeks or island jump through the pacific.
I'm not sure yet.
All I know is that first world problems are the best possible problems.
And... I'm open to suggestions. So if you can think of your dream vacation.... Or a place you've always wanted to explore/dive/visit/hike/surf/kayak/fish/etc. ...please let me know.
In the meanwhile, Queenstown is holding its annual Winterfest celebration. I missed the opening fireworks show last night but I did make it to the parade today.
Storm trooper on parade

 I went with my co-worker, Bridgette, and her family. I adore Bridgette.
Bridge and her fam; Thalia, Trev and Maddie

I'm trying to convince her to move to North America with me.  I have so much fun with her - she's my kiwi girl crush.
Climbers in the parade

Jets boats on parade

She's so awesome and it makes me miss my girls back home even more.
Parade zombies

My friend Jamey was in the parade as a brain eating Zombie..
Jamey in the parade

This is how my ex roomie Fiona dressed him up for his interview

So, that about sums it up. I spend most of my days working, and my evenings are spent making dinner and watching movies by the newly working fireplace. With lots of time spent staring at the beautiful mountains and watching the snow come down.

View of the Remarkables from my lounge

Not too shabby.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Snow day

Last week it was freezing in Queenstown!
The snow was creeping further down the mountains

I woke up in the morning to get ready for work and took a peek outside my window to check out my car and try to estimate how long it was going to take me to defrost my window.
And saw this-
My car, blending in to nature with its snow camo

Now I don't have snow chains, or 4WD and I KNEW better...I KNEW I shouldnt, nay, couldnt drive my car in these conditions. But I really didn't want to call in sick to work and I thought if I could just make it to a plowed road I'd be okay....
After slipping and sliding for a few minutes I pulled/slid to the side of the road and was ready to throw in the towel.
I looked into my rear view and watched as a minivan pirouetted into the back of my car, ass first.
My car just has all the bad luck.
No one was hurt. But our cars were wedged together at the top of a hill so law enforcement had to be called.
The cop brought chains and got us untangled and everything was all good. Especially since the backpackers that hit me have great insurance and my car is going to be fixed without me having to pay a dime.
Coulda been way worse.
While we were going through the car drama we all took turns falling on our butts walking on the icy ground and watched cars try to come up the hill then slide back down.
I swear it was like living in a highlight reel of bloopers and pratfalls.
And the local news came, you know, to document our shame in print.
I'm on the left, we watched that green taxi do one of the best controlled slides backwards down the hill

One walking passerby even made sure to let us know what jackasses we were (so helpful).
My flatmate, Fiona sent her friend to come rescue me (to be truly helpful and offset the ridiculously cranky pedestrian who was reveling in his presumably scarce circumstance of superiority.)
Hooray for a SNOW DAY!!!!!
No work and all day to play in the snow!
I couldn't have been happier!
The lakeside statue of Rees, founder of Queenstown

I walked into town, being careful not to fall down. Grabbed a nice hot cocoa, bought Fiona some fudge from the candy shop for all her help....
I also decided, it was a great day warm up with some whiskey..
I refuse to believe I was the only one buying booze at 10am that day....

Then onto Bumbles, to wake my unemployed friends, Dom and Eric, and make them play with me.
This took quite a bit of effort.
1. The Canadian was completely unimpressed by snow.
    Me: blasphemy! Get up and make snowmen with me!
2. We were all lacking in cold weather gear and they had a heater going full blast in their room with a beautiful view of the lake...
  Me: hmmmm. Got me there. Lets just day drink inside for a bit till we figure this out...

So we sat inside for awhile. Got toasty warm and a bit of a buzz. Finally, I dragged them out to day drink with dignity at a proper pub.
Fiona and Eric

We met up with some other people and made a day of it.
Just walking through snowy downtown and bar hopping. Dodging snowballs.
So frosty!

At our last stop we had become a good sized group and chilled out in front of a giant indoor fire and played tons of pool while we thawed out.
Outside of 1876. I'm doing my best Gene Simmons inpersonation

I love the snow. I am smitten with it. By the end of the day the snow was already thawing so I was stoked I got to enjoy a day of it.

Respectable (non day drinking) worker in downtown