The worst place for a mobile to fall in
After a good breakfast of crumpets and Nutella with the whole family, Mark drops us in Wanaka. We're very happy of our stay here, that felt like a break, even if we took no zero day. We had great time with Mark's family, with fellow TA hikers, we had a WhatsApp with our families and with some friends, I went to the physio, repaired a second hole in my mattress and last but not least, we had an ice cream after lunch in Wanaka before we started hiking!
Before starting to hike, we need to book a few stuff, like an accommodation in Queenstown, one in Arrowtown and a hut on the Tongariro circuit that we want to hike in April. We can't book the Oturere hut on Tongariro circuit because the system ask for our card reader machine that we don't have here. But we call Gabrielle from Frogs in New Zealand and she books it for us. It was the last 2 beds available!
6:30 is the wake up time for fellow hikers, but it's too early for us. The sunrise is around 7:30 now... And we decided to stop at the next hut, 7 km far from here. Even if we have to climb a few hundred meters, it doesn't take us long to reach Highland Creek hut.
We have to cross it every 3 or 4 minutes. But is freezing cold! After a dozen crossings, our feet are numb with cold and we know that it will take us at least an hour and a half to reach Macetown. We grit our teeth.
I go to the toilet and while I turn around to close the lid, I hear a "bang" inside. It takes me no time to understand that my phone is down there now, in the toilet, far from arm's reach.
After thinking about it a few minutes, I ask to Marie-Laure a supermarket plastic bag. I tie it to the tip of my hiking poles. I extend the hiking poles as much as possible. And I go fishing.
It's tricky. I can't get the mobile phone inside the bag. I need to improve the system. Marie-Laure comes to help me, with a headlamp and her own poles. She tries to push the phone in the plastic bag with the tip of her own hiking pole. After a few attempts, the phone is in the bag.
Now, it's an easy job. A bit disgusting but easy. I remove the phone from the bag, find another bag to pack the plastic bag full of smells (I'll get rid of it at the first dustbin we'll meet), and I clean the phone first with disinfectant and then with water. Now, I just have to let it dry and see if it still operates normally after that.
We can't stop laughing about this adventure, thinking about the pleasure it will be to explain it to the friends!
We settle in a cabin at the motor camp for a well deserved rest.
Marie-Laure posts on Facebook and we get some news of our Scottish friend Mike. He is very close from here, in Queenstown, and we decide to meet tomorrow morning.
We hike to Queenstown and keep talking about our plans for the next days. The weather won't be good, so we consider renting a car. We end up booking a small and cheap car for 3 days. It will allow us to go to Milford village for the cruise we booked without problem. Definitely easier than having to hitchhike!
By the time our car is booked, we discover that we are on the wrong way. Never mind, we can reach the town by this way also. We even find some Te Araroa markers: the trail was probably here before.
We eventually reach the camping and enjoy a nice evening with Mike and one of his friend. The sun is shining and we eat together on the terrace : a lovely way to finish this section!