The blog of Eric Sibly; focusing on mountain biking, .NET development for the Desktop, Smartphone and PocketPC.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

The NZ trip...

The holiday pretty much went as follows:

Thursday: Arrived in New Zealand around half nine, picked up by Rob from the airport and back to his new “pad” in the city - very nice. We also went out for a couple of quiet beers, the nice kiwi stuff.

Friday: Rob had to go to work, and I got to sleep in – no boys or wife to wake me – ah! Went and closed our old bank account, our final NZ legacy, and took out the remaining money for holiday funds. Met Rob after lunch, and then met Graham for a couple of beers at the Loaded Hog to catch up on what had been happening and collect keys to the Taupo house. Rob and I then went to the movies to kill some time before meeting up with some of his mates, saw the new Batman Begins movie – it was actually really good. Drank lots and lots and lots of beer, got home at 3am feeling pretty wasted / drunk / seedy :-p

Saturday: Woke up feeling pretty sorry for myself due to previous night’s consumption - required Panadol to assist in healing process. Caught up with John Aiken for lunch after checking out his house that he has recently purchased in Ponsonby with his new girly. Heard all the great news about how well things were going, and am excited about seeing his book that comes out soon. That night was pizza with some other old Ernst & Young friends, Jos and Mark and families.

Sunday: Up bright and early, car packed, time to drive down to Taupo. Weather is decidedly dodgy, with rain, rain and more rain all the way down. Finally get to Taupo four or so hours later, with the weather looking slightly brighter with a few showers. Did some shopping for food supplies to last the next few days, then set ourselves up at the house in Taupo. Decide that the break in the weather offers a chance for a quick ride, so we get the bikes ready and head off to Craters of the Moon. We start riding the trails, which are fairly water logged, large puddles, gooey mud and slippery roots making it all a bit of a challenge. We get onto a second more challenging trail when we encounter a bit of a steep downhill section, I shoot down first and go up other side to wait for Rob. Rob comes down, gets a little too much speed up, gets the wobbles and ends up running into a tree stump at the bottom, does a Superman over the bars and comes down hard. I run down to see how he is and find he has a puncture in his knee from landing on a stick or rock, lots of blood oozing out – when he stretches leg it starts spraying blood out - wicked! I rip the bottom half of my polypropylene shirt and wrap that around the wound and then tape up with some electrical tape from within the backpack to stop bleeding. This appears to work and we walk / hobble it back out with bikes to the car and make a visit to the local hospital, turns out the wound is fairly clean and doesn’t require stitches, just some bandages and rest. This basically put an end to Rob’s ridding, and our skiing for the holiday as he could barely walk for the remainder of the holiday. Took it easy that night :-(

Monday/Tuesday: Carbon-copy days. Basically hung out in Taupo, and I went for a ride each day back at the Craters of the Moon trails whilst Rob read the paper or a magazine in the car, followed up by a movie (The Island and Fantastic Four – both not bad). I managed to explore some new trails that I hadn’t been on before and had a great time ripping up the trails. This place really does have some of the best riding I have ever done. The trails consist or largely rolling singletrack, with some small, medium difficulty climbs, fast-ish downhills, with most riding being middle ring at speed – a real blast. The new bike was just awesome, it ate up everything the trails could throw at it, and with the track drying out more and more each day it just got faster – it was wicked! I could just keep going back for more – maybe I should move to Taupo and just ride for the rest of my life!

Wednesday: Cleaned bikes and packed up ready to head back to Auckland. Had to call in Electrician for the house as the hot water cylinder had stopped heating, turns out the master switch in the house had melted itself as somebody had previously wired it incorrectly – nasty! This crazy electrician turns up in his van with “Phone SEX” painted on the back; an acronym for “Scotty’s Electrical Xpertise”, with a website, – dodgy bugger! Went via Rotorua and did the obligatory luge - good fun! Stopped off to catch up with Derek Fairweather (ex SAP guy from EY - who is now the CEO of Innovation Waikato) – he then showed Rob and I around the premises and showed us some of the things they were investing in – it was really interesting; then we caught up some more over a few beers. Went onto some other bar in Hamilton and got abused by the bar girl – the story too embarrassing to tell :-( Arrived back at Rob’s just after midnight and crashed.

Thursday: Awoke at around 10:30am – totally unheard of at home where the wife or kids would have kicked me out of bed well and truly before an obscene time like that. Anyways, after breakfast, we went off and played 9 holes of golf; was fun smacking around the little white ball again, it has been a long time since I had last swung a club in anger. Another movie, The Longest Yard, then onto drinks again catching up with a couple of other guys I hadn’t seen in a long time. Packed the bags ready for the 6:50am flight home.

Friday: Awoke early, caught flight, spent the day with the missus, then picked up the boys from school.

All in all an awesome holiday, I would like to thank the wife for letting me go on the trip and Rob for putting up with me for the week :-)


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