Tuesday, 23 December 2014


My darling and I touched down in Queenstown today, all ready to celebrate The Lord's birth in some style. The day has been absolutely beautiful; hot sun and brilliant blue sky. The fact that we left exactly the same in Christchurch doesn't detract from it one bit.

In fact, here is a gorgeous view out of our hotel room window which didn't take very much standing on of chairs or zooming in of lenses to get at all:

There are the usual drawbacks you face when you're away from home:

- my wardrobe didn't travel with me so when I felt like slipping on a pair of comfy pants my choices were underwear or purchasing some brand new Queenstown-priced sweatpants

- we don't have a toaster, but that's not so bad because

- we don't have bread either. Or butter. Or a knife.

We do inexplicably have access to a lot of wine and beer which is exorbitantly expensive, but only teeny tiny pottles of milk which isn't.

Oh, and the hotel is very kindly putting on a special menu tomorrow for Christmas Day, which they informed us of in the same sentence as they informed us that this wouldn't effect us because it was already fully booked. That's either customer service or callous disregard - I can't quite decide which.

Everything would be trucking along just lovely except, Queenstown is different from Canterbury. I don't mean the boatloads of tourists all speaking different languages, or the way the prices all have a 10% location top-up, or even that there are ducks bobbing about on the beach because it's freshwater and not saltwater.

No. Those things are strange, but that's most of the reason you travel to another city, isn't it?

The difference I'm talking about involves more effort than those things. Serious effort. Effort that starts off in my calf muscles, rises quickly to my thighs, and ends up in blinding white-hot pain in my lungs.

Yes, you guessed it. Queenstown has hills.

Christchurch does have some of these ridiculous things also, but you really have to set your mind to it to get to one. And climbing them would just be bizarre unless you happen to own a property at the top. And that property hasn't tumbled down to the bottom in an earthquake.

So, beautiful views out of the hotel window, or the peace and quiet of knowing that you can make it back to your room without breaking into a sweat?

So hard to choose.

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