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Day 5: Waitomo & Rotoura

August 28, 2008

Today we could not resist one more caving adventure, so we made time for it in our schedule.  We woke up around 8am to a yummy breakfast of french toast and blueberries, then we made our way to Cave World for our tour.  In this adventure we float through the cave in a tube, then jump off a waterfall.  I am all over it.  We had to wear wetsuits and what do you know–mine didn’t fit.  They always give me a wetsuit that is one size too small.  So what do they do when your wetsuit is too small?  They don’t give you a bigger one.   Two men grab you on either side of your suit and shake you in the air until you slide down into the suit.  Imagine this happening to you in front of a group of people.  I do believe it will go down as one of the highlights of our vacation–or should I say lowlights.  Maybe I shouldn’t have had the extra bacon for breakfast or the chocolate.  Unfortunately I did not get this on camera, but I did provide comic relief for the rest of the group.  The tour was EXCELLENT.  I loved jumping off the waterfall.  The water was a little *refreshing* but hey, gets the blood pumping.

We then drove about 2 hours to the town of Rotoura.  It resembles the Branson of New Zealand.  It is where the *magic* sulfur pools are, so it stinks all the time.  I woke up with a screaming headache from it.  Once we arrived at Rotoura we showered and changed just in time to attend our Hangi.  A Hangi is a cultural show that involves the *war* dance of NZ and, of course, food.  The bus arrived at our hotel to pick us up and we knew right away, that it was going to be a long night.  The show was okay.  I probably would not choose this activity again, but when in Rome, right?  The food was no good and the ambiance was even worse.  It reminded me of a hoedown, only with Europeans and no moonshine.  At the end of the night our tour guide, who was quit possibly the most obnoxious woman ever, drove us back to the hotel and made us (Jer & I did not do this) sing Row, Row, Row Your Boat on the bus all the way home.  Even better, when we entered the round-about, she ramped up the gas on the bus and spun us around the roundabout–in the middle of the street, in the middle of the night–about 10 times.  I was dizzy when I got off the bus.  That experience right there, made the night something that is going to be hard to erase from my mind.  I am permanently traumatized.  Oh well we are still having a great time! 

Jer & Gwen at Cultural Dinner

King Country, New Zealand

3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 28, 2008 12:36 pm

    Whoa. That bus trip is going to give ME nightmares. She seriously made everyone sing???

  2. mom permalink
    August 28, 2008 9:46 pm

    Glad to hear all is well! Careful on those waterfalls. After the last two days I am about ready jump off something. I think I would jump in the waterfalls without the wet suit now. By the way my students just noticed today the Hawaiian chimes in my room. School started 2 weeks ago. Love Ya Mom

  3. Princess Consuela B.H. permalink
    August 28, 2008 9:55 pm

    Ug on the bus trips. Man, I wanted to see some pictures! You know, if I were there, I’d be such a loser. I’d be like “Hey guys, I’m going to keep my face in those sulfur pools to see if it really helps my zits. Let me know how your travels go!” I’m kind of obsessed.

    So are you finding enough to do? I know you were a little worried about that before you went.

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