We pull into the next town we come along, and park in a gas station parking lot. Almost everything is closed. Tomorrow is Easter. The afternoon is slipping away. We walk into an auto store to see if anyone inside knows anything about camper vans and come out with two New Zealand air force mechanics in suits who were on their way home from a wedding because, you know, I guess stopping on the way home from a wedding to pick up some new brake pads happens pretty often if you're a mechanic.
They roll up their sleeves and crawl under the camper, suits and all, to find that the gear box has leaked all of its oil. We cannot drive the camper. It's amazing we've even made it this far, which is fantastic because remember, it's the night before Easter and everything, including the camper rental office, is closed. The office promised us a new camper, but not until late the next day.
Thus we are presented with two options: spend the night in the gas station parking lot OR accept a shower, bed, and night out with two members of the New Zealand air force. And thus, we foresee two potential outcomes: we are found two weeks later half buried in a ditch, bloodied, dismemebered, and lacking all identification OR we have perhaps the most classic of all backpacker stories, a night with the natives who have come to our rescue.
And that night we learned one thing. If New Zealand is famous for anything, it's
And also picking up random travelers is something these people do all the time because that's so kiwi. After spending the night on an air mattress on Matt's living room floor on the air force base, we accepted a ride in Matt's car for a tour around the base and the countryside of Blenheim while Tara hopped on Johan's motorcycle for a tour of their own and that sounds a lot more scandalous than it was because there really was a motorcycle and what do you take us for anyway?
Later that night, when we finally caught up with the other Americans we were travelling with, the girls were all you people are lucky you weren't DRUGGED and we were all psshh I wish and then I'm pretty sure Tara said something like feckity feck fecky up your boozehag arses because that's so Tara. And then we laughed like arseholes and made Lori teach us how to tell someone they dropped their book in sign language over a dinner of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and beer and then took pictures of Mia peeing in the bushes because that's so us. Tweet