Wednesday. My 100th day away from home. Day off, so after watching the end of the cricket (Sri Lanka knocking NZ out), I went for lunch with Rick. It being a national holiday, nit many places were open, so we got some food in a bakery in Taumarunui, and went to a spot by the river in Owhango to eat. Had some problems trying to use my NZ bank card so spent some time on the phone to them, then greeted Freddy when she got back from the crossing. We chatted for a while, then I tidied my room, went on the internet, and later watched CSI: NY.
Thursday. Finished work by 11am. Yes, two hours work. Phoned Dad – apparently just after midnight is the best time to catch him! We talked for about half an hour before my phone card ran out of credit. I spent the afternoon reading my Practical Photography magazine, learning techniques and choosing my next camera and all the equipment I’ll need! Schnapps wasn’t busy so me and Jo relieved boredom by finding lots of cleaning jobs, including getting chewing gum off the undersides of the tables. Can you believe adults do that? I thought that was something twelve-year olds to rebel in school. After work I stayed for a few drinks with the locals, then me, Spud, Kyla and Steelo had a couple of games of doubles pool. Me and Spud won both!
Friday. Two and three-quarters hours work today. Just about paid for my accommodation for the week! Went to the petrol station for milk and bread. Spent the afternoon making a big bowl of coleslaw and one of pasta and veg in a tomato sauce. In Schnapps, the last customers left at 7.30pm, but I had to stay open just in case anyone came in. A couple of guys came in later, but I was still closed down by 10pm. Started reading Lord of the Rings again. If I can read 20 pages a day, I’ll be done before I leave NZ – just a bit quicker than the three years it took me first time round!
Saturday. Couldn’t start work until 10am, took a lunch break, and I was still done by 1.30pm. Spent the afternoon reading and watching TV. Went to Schnapps at 8pm with Freddy for a few beers and a dessert, because she’s leaving next week. We walked back around 11pm, and I watched the end of Sin City before bed.
Sunday. So excited – Wellington in nine days!! Finished work by 11am, then the bus of 30 16-year old boys arrived. What fun! Luckily they went straight back out again. Since it was a nice day, I went for a walk along Fishers Track, just out of the village. Not an unenjoyable walk, but certainly one where I felt like I wasn’t really going anywhere. It took an hour each way, and I went to The Station on the way back for a coffee and huge slice of carrot cake. Got back the lodge before the boys and went for a shower. Good thing because they trashed them pretty quickly! Schnapps in the evening. Pretty uneventful except that me and Spud had a bit of a falling out.
Monday. I avoided walking through the downstairs hallway all day, so I could avoid the smell of 30 teenage boys. They left me plenty of work in the bathroom, kitchen and living area anyway. No sooner had Freddy and I sat down for lunch than they got back from their morning field trip, trashed the bathroom and turned one TV up loud, so we couldn’t hear what we had on. I went into Schnapps early, partly to avoid them and partly for a slice of the yummy chocolate cake we have at the moment. I was fairly busy once I started work – just enough for one person. Me and Spud seem to be OK again too. Had a couple of drinks with him, Kyla and Kyla’s boss later on. Got back to the lodge around midnight. A lot of the boys were still up. The place was a pigsty.
Tuesday. Not a day I was looking forward to, but at least it’s all over. If anything, clearing up after 30 teenagers certainly has reminded me that I definitely don’t want children! All broody girls should spend a couple of days clearing up after teenagers – it’ll stop population growth! And also, it could be worse: at least I don’t clean in San Antonio or Faliraki. The addition of alcohol would make matters so much worse! Anyway, it took me from 9am until 6pm to get it all done, and Cy made half the beds. At least everywhere has had a really good clean tho! Freddy got us a slice of cake and a muffin each from the petrol station, which we enjoyed very much when we finished! Then we watched House in the evening.