On our way to Franz Josef Glacier, we stopped at Lake Mahinapua to look for some freshwater dolphins. Apparently there’s a pod that live in the lake. I have no clue how they got into a lake, but that’s what our bus driver told us. For all I know, he could be pulling our leg and just needed a break from driving.
In any case, we didn’t find any dolphins, but the view of the Southern Alps more than made up for this loss. It was so quiet and picturesque with the snow-capped mountains reflecting off the surface of the lake. New Zealand really does have some of the best looking natural features ever, and I think I’d rank this view as the best one so far.
When we arrived in Franz Josef, we headed toward the glacier hike office so everyone could book their morning hikes. Even though hiking a glacier is one of the reasons many tourists come to New Zealand, I decided to skip it along with a few other people. The hike is quite expensive and, as you know by now, I’m not really a cheerleader for hiking. Alba, who is nursing blisters on both heals from her Tongariro hike, booked the heli-hike option. This is the most expensive package, because they fly you to the top of the glacier in a helicopter where the ice is not accessible by foot. There’s less walking involved since you’re flying to the site, so hopefully her feet will thank her for it even though her wallet might be crying.
After everyone was briefed on their hikes, Alba and I went to YHA Franz Josef and checked into our room. We were lucky enough to have a five-bed dorm room to ourselves, which was nice. The accommodation was actually one of the best ones in which we’ve stayed. As I found out later, Will, one of the guys from our bus, and Lynn, the girl we met in Greymouth, were also staying here.
Since I wasn’t hiking the following day, I decided to get serious about looking for a job. I’d been applying casually for a while but now I felt the urgency of it. Before I knew it, my vacation in New Zealand would be over. Alba would be flying home. I’d be back in Auckland with nothing to do and my money just slipping through my fingers to pay for accommodation and food.
Until now I had focused on jobs within the marketing, public relations and publishing fields hoping to hold out for a job I’d really enjoy and one where I could learn new things that applied to my career back home. However, now was not the time to be picky. Maybe learning new things should be the only criteria to which I held fast? If this were the case, any job I could find would fit the bill. This new revelation encouraged me to look outside my abilities and find things that were of interest to me.