Wow, another amazing activity on our trip. Tonight we took a boat across Lake Te Anau to the glowworm caves. It was terrific. We entered the caves and had to lower our heads. But really lower them, to about 3 feet. I’m not tall and even I was almost crawling. We only did that for about 10 feet and then the ceiling opened up. The caves were spectacular. Clear rushing water carved all sorts of crevasses and grooves in the rock. At then end of the walkway, maybe 800 feet, we got into a metal boat at the grotto. From there they turned off all of the lights. As we got deeper into the grotto it became silent and pitch black except for the glowworms. We were able to get really close to them. It was like being on a Disney ride but 100 billion times better.
Yesterday, for those of you that do not know, Rob and I became engaged. I knew that the proposal was happening sometime while we are in New Zealand, but I didn’t know the time and place. As we were driving from Franz Joseph to Wanaka we passed a lookout over the ocean where the sun was setting. We pulled over to take a picture, or at least that’s what I thought. Rob was very cute and got down on one knee. Of course I said yes.
We just got back from the glacier hike. It was SO MUCH FUN! We took a helicopter up to mid glacier and then hiked all over it and helicopter down. The weather is totally clear and sunny. It had snowed a few days ago which makes the hiking a lot faster and easier so we were able to go cooler places, like in ice caves and it some steep crevasses. So cool (literally and figuratively).
Now we’re heading out to Wanaka. Tomorrow we’re doing to glow worm cave boat tour.
Let me start out by saying that so far the Kiwis are the nicest people on the planet. Granted, we’ve only talked to a few, but so far I’m impressed. We arrived this morning at 5am (felt like 3am to us). We had booked a hotel room just for the morning to nap and take showers before we drive off this afternoon. I am a giant idiot and booked the wrong day. The hotel was fully booked. The super nice hotel guy was able to put us in a room that people had checked out of earlier. Housekeeping hadn’t come, but he gave us fresh sheets and towels and we remade a bed. We were very grateful to sleep a little and take showers.
Now we are waiting at the airport (free wifi!) for our rental car. The sun is shining and the roads that were closed yesterday are now open. We will test Rob’s car chain skills later.
We head out to New Zealand in a few hours. Our flight is at 11:40pm, ouch. We’re both very excited. We bought a Lonely Planet book today at the University bookstore. We’ve already added going to see the glowworms to our itinerary. One of our friends recommended it. You go in a dark cave, scream and the glowworms have bioluminescence poop secretions. It’s supposed to be really neat.
We probably won’t have much, if any, wifi access while we’re gone. See you on the 4th of July!
Happy 6 months until Christmas! In Australia, they have a “Christmas in July” celebration. I’m not clear on the details, seems like a dinner together with friends and/or family. I don’t know why they don’t to it in June, when it’s 6 months away. I guess it doesn’t sound a cool and it’s not smack in the middle of winter. Anyway, Merry Christmas Eve x 181.