North Island Ahoy!
I have about an hour’s worth of internet here in Taupo, so I thought I’d spend some of it updating here, since my internet in Fiji next week will be really, really patchy( maybe expect not to hear from me at all).
To get to the North Island, I took the ferry.
Prior to this, my only ferrying experience had been the Toronto Islands Ferry. So, I was envisioning passengers crossing the Cook Strait on hard, wooden benches, stamping their feet on corrugated metal decks to stay warm, and occasionally running into a cramped, dingy washroom.
It wasn’t like that.
The Interislander Ferry I took could fit about 500 people and their cars (as opposed to the ones without cars, which fit a few thousand). I never did figure out how many decks, but at least five. There were multiple bars, a playground, and a cinema. Instead of hard benches, the seating areas had padded armchairs clustered in quartets, with tables between.
As I took my seat, I was gloating. “I get to do this voyage again in July!”
I was at the front of the vessel, and since there was an observation deck overlooking the nose (bow, I guess, if we want to be all nautical), I spent the first part of the voyage out there, gaping as we cruised by the ridiculously green Marlborough Sounds.
When we hit open waters, I retreated inside for some writing time. But then, it hit.
I never get seasick. Not that I’m on boats that much, but still. What’s more, the seas were light, and I was on a floating airport lounge.
After curling into a tight ball failed to cure anything, I grabbed a “travel sickness” bag and went back on deck, hoping to get some wind on my face and the horizon in view. All that happened was that I got cold, and very nearly lost my gloves overboard.
Eventually, I fell asleep out of sheer misery, and only woke up when we entered the Wellington Harbour, and the waves turned into ripples.
And thus, my glorious arrival on the North Island.