Merry Christmas!! We are having an extremely lazy morning here in Wellington. All the Christmas shopping is done (1 present each) so it should be a very stress-free day. The biggest challenge will be scouting out a good restaurant to have dinner tonight. We are staying in a lovely apartment-hotel right in the centre of Wellington and will be here until the 26th when we begin the last leg of our journey up to Auckland.
Our time with Johnny and Carolyn couldn't have been better. They showed us a fantastic time and it was a real pleasure to see them again after a couple years. On our last weekend they took us to a place called Hanmer Springs which is a lovely little mountain town a couple hundred kilometers from Christchurch. They organized a beautiful house with stunning views of the town and mountains and only a short walk from the hot spring pools where we enjoyed a good soaking in the afternoon. We had the most chilled out night sitting in front of a crackling fire in the fireplace with some great wines, cheeses and music. Johnny and I learned that it is actually possible to have an enjoyable night together without getting absolutely blind. But for old times sake, we got the big guns out for our last night in Christchurch which resulted in a magnificent hangover the next morning. I was happy to wave Johnny bye-bye one last time as he trotted off to work with bloodshot eyes and this alcohol vapour seeping out of him which gave him the appearance of being surrounded by a force field. He called me from work to report that the staff in the office had taken up a collection to go buy him some breath freshening gum. Mission accomplished!