Dunedin to Fox Glacier…

Day 5. Today started out with a trip over to Dunedin Hospital to see some of the guys I met at the NZOUG conference in Rotorua. Tim Cleminson had invited me along to have an informal chat with the team about all things Oracle. Anyone who has met me knows once I get started I won’t stop until I get escorted from the building, so it was fun for me at least. 🙂

From there I got straight into the car and started out for Fox Glacier, which was a rather strange trip. Initially the weather was really good, but as I got to Central Otago it got very windy, to the point where I was getting a bit nervous about driving. I had a bit of car trouble about 150km from Fox Glacier, see below, then the rain, fog and wind came in big time while I was in the rain forest. Just as I got to Fox Glacier the weather cleared so I went straight out to check it out. No sooner had I finished and the heavens opened again.

I’m booked on a flight over Fox Glacier tomorrow, but I don’t think the weather is going to be good enough to get the helicopter in the air. Fingers crossed.

Now to the car trouble, which is really rather spooky. A couple of days ago I was in Queenstown and I got this weird urge to buy a knife… I know that makes me sound like a total psycho, but that’s what happened. Quite bizarrely I acted on this impulse and bought a cheap camping knife and after thinking, “What a bloody stupid thing to do!”, I packed it in my case and thought no more about it. Fast forward to today and my car trouble. After a few really heavy gusts of wind I started to hear a funny noise coming from the driver side front wheel. Thinking that my wheel was coming off, I stopped the car and noticed part of the plastic from the wheel arch had come away and was rubbing on the tyre. There were three clips holding it in place, but two had broken. There was no way to fix it back on, so I had to try and remove it or remain stranded. After pulling and wiggling it for a few minutes I decided there was no way I was getting it off without some tools. Then a little light went ping in my head. I opened the boot and got out my knife, sliced off the offending plastic flap and went on my way. A total Twilight Zone experience. Just goes to show, nothing in life is a coincidence… 🙂



PS. Stan and Michelle, I owe you a new plastic wheel arch panel on your car (The Bomb). I have a feeling the repair will cost more than buying a new car. 🙂

Invercargill and Dunedin…

Day 4 was going to be a quick drive to Invercargill, then on to Dunedin. Instead I took the long route.

Google says about 8 hours 40 minutes, which was about right, with a couple of diversions. I’m glad I added the extra miles because it’s a really cool route.

It’s Labour Day today, so most places were closed on my route. I was expecting to see some life at Invercargill, but it was a bit of a ghost town due to the holiday, so I didn’t stay long.

Fortunately, Dunedin was really busy. It’s a University town so there were students milling around everywhere. It was really hot today and I was a bit burnt from the Milford Sound trip yesterday, so I tried to stay out of the sun. What few photos I did take of Dunedin are either suffering from bad glare or bad shadow. Looks like a really nice place and the areas around it, like the Otago Peninsula, are really cool too.

I’m pretty tired of driving now, but tomorrow is a long haul. Google says only 6 hours, but I think it’s going to be more like 9. Also, I’m meeting up with some guys in Dunedin in the morning, so I won’t get to start until later in the day.