There are pros and cons to being a casual employee…
A con is that there are less dollaz.
A pro is that I can take mid-week hiking excursions to little huts in the back arse of nowhere!
Mother, cousin and I took a wee jaunt to Fenella Hut in the Kahurangi National Park this week.
Besides the mass onslaught of blood sucking sand flies who love my juicy ankles, it was quite lovely. It was like a Boy Scouts adventure trail, with little cabins and campfires dotted along the valley floor, close enough to the river for a good dip after a long day.
Our first night we just drove into the first hut and slept fitfully, fearful of exposing our toes to the savage insects who roamed the cabin, waiting to pounce.
The days walk was meant to take almost five hours, but because we are youthful and spritely, we trotted along the track and jogged up the hill, doing a few squats while we were at it.
When we arrived at Fenella Hut, it was like a shimmering mirage of glory in the midday heat. A relatively new hut, Fenella Hut was built as a memorial to Fenella Druce, who was killed in 1977 when the Three Johns Hut was blown over a bluff in Aoraki National Park.
We hoped the same would not happen to us.
A high point was the toilet, which may have been the most magnificient Department of Conservation hut toilet I have ever graced with my bottom. And I have graced MANY.
Stained glass windows, a delightful bush view (ha!) and even a pipe of running water conveniently placed for washing ones hands post wee-wee. It’s the little things that count.
Usually you have to dash in, hold your breath, close your eyes and pretend that the flies buzzing out of the dark depths of the long drop are just there for moral support.
An equally high point (some may say higher) was the magical tarn (lake) that rested just over the hillock, beckoning us with it’s un-tarn-ished beauty. I hope you see what I did there.
If trees had eyes, (and fingers and mouths), they would have been laughing and pointing at our naked, awkwardly tanned bodies plunging ungraciously into the waters. I do not like to touch the bottom with my feet, because I fear the creatures of the depths, but I enjoyed doggy paddling about, watching the dragonflies have sex with their faces (at least that’s what it looked like. Isn’t nature wonderful??).
Then came the time to get out. Naked. Using only a slimy rock, fatigued legs and stylishness, I slid on my front up the rock, realised my companions were taking x-rated photographs of my exit technique, slid back a bit in shock horror, then launched myself upward like a nifty seal. It was that rock’s lucky day… Just sayin’.
My evening meal consisted of mothers homemade dehydrated lentil curry, which sounds quite hideous but actually was top notch, and a snack on Rachel’s ‘fun mix’. Open to interpretation.
We had the hut to ourselves, so we played card games loudly and used two mattresses instead of one. Crazy cats.
Today we retraced our steps in a gazelle-like fashion, stopping for water, an occasional nibble and a cheeky skinny dip in the river, much to the astonishment of the German tourists walking by. (Just kidding, no one saw us… We think).
Now I am home, sprawled on my bed with a glass of wine positioned very nearby for ease of access to my mouth.
I DESERVE IT. It’s been a hard week at work..