Today we got a chance to explore (on our own, finally!) Queenstown. It was so much fun to get to walk around and act like locals (okay, we stopped in a few times for souvenirs--everyone in our group bought hats and, wait for it, possum fur gloves), and since I've decided that my concentration is going to be portraits it was really helpful to get to see and take pictures of the "locals" up close. I sound like I'm talking about crocodiles don't I? Turns out that kids are the easiest to photograph because they're too young to know that they should be really freaked out. I feel like a complete creeper but I'm getting some good shots out of it so I guess it's worth it. being a photographer kind of releases you from some basic etiquette laws. Emily Post would turn over in her grave.
After our expeditions we all met up and took a Gondola up to the top of a giant hill overlooking Queenstown. The view was unbelievable.
We were supposed to go and pick up our National Geographic Expert Ula from the airport today but because of the volcanic eruption in Chile (did I mention it's been raining ash here for, like, three days?) and all the earthquakes on the North Island she's not going to fly in until Thursday so we went on to
Wanaka without her.
The drive wasn't far but the bus had some problems and Carl couldn't get it any higher than about third gear, so we were stuck at 40 miles, excuse me, kilometers an hour the whole way here. There were quite a few angry drivers--it's been the first time I saw an angry native. Well, except for the really mean flight attendants. But they were Australian.
Tonight we went to an Indian Resturaunt that poured us mango smoothies out of paint buckets.