Last weekend was my first time ever on a snowboard and I totally loved it!! As did Thomas and Miriam (who was a ski bunny) who I went up with. We hired a car and left Welly for Ohakune at 5am to make the most of the day. The drive up was uneventful apart from me killing a sparrow, oops, but not us thankfully (I was chief driver as you who know me will be surprised to hear). We keep getting automatics out here but I'm getting used to them now. First time I drove one I kept slamming on the breaks at 100km/hr thinking it was the clutch, that kinda hurt.
So we arrived in Ohakune (it's famous here in NZ for having an extra big carrot, you'll see it in the photos, it's not that impressive, really!) and dumped our stuff in the Turoa Ski Lodge which was very dainty for us lil backpackers
. We were slightly worried however by the fact that we couldn't actually see any mountains! But we headed up there anyway hoping it did actually exist and we had a ball from the second we got there. We got all our gear on, the pants were pretty darn cool. Thomas and I left Miriam to go for our 1.5hr lesson. The teacher was typically hunky, tanned, fit type so much pleasing to me. We got our j-turns etc and he said he was "very pleased with my progess, excellent work". I was expecting a gold star to be pulled out at any minute. So we spent the rest of the time flying down our lil baby slope and running back up it with one foot still attached to the board (excellent work out if anyone is looking for new exercise). We could see ourselves making progress which was encouraging and I did actually feel like i had some control over where the board went. We are both totally hooked on it now and def want to try and get up at least one more time before the season ends. It was very tempting to run off down to Queenstown and become ski bunnies for the rest of the winter.
Anyway, suitably knackered we headed back to Ohakune and went straight for a dip in the hot pool which was the best thing ever! After we were suitably prune like we got out and ready for a night on the town. For having a total of 3pubs where we were it was very lively. One bar was excellent and it's the first time I've ever actually noticed the DJ for his music skills
. Then we proceeded to crash out at 2am in our poly pro's (thermal underwear as we know it!) as hostel rooms aren't the warmest. We were dying to go back up the mountain the next day but the car had to be back in Welly so it was a no go. We did stop in the weirdest town i've ever come across though. It was called Bulls, had a massive tacky statue of a bull in the middle of the town, a bizarre little Dutch shop (in a redneck town in NZ, c'mon!) and every shop was determined to cash in on this whole bull thing by ensuring that the name of their shop ended in a "ble" work\d. Examples:::
Bank-a-BULL (the local bank)
Valu-a-BULL (the strange little dutch shop)
Const-a-BULL (the local bobby should be cracking down on such shenanigans, not taking part)
Comfort-a-BULL (local redneck motel) and the list just goes on and on and on... It was just bloody weird man.
Okay, I'm goofy footed but ace at j-turns and know what my toe side and my heel side is!! Yip, I am now a fully fledged pro snowboarder bunny, ayee! Some may disagree but we refuse to listen!