I have been welcomed into Wanaka with wide open arms. It is quite possible that I don’t leave for a while. Problem? Definitely not.
After I blogged up a storm last week, I walked over to the local climbing gym to put up a ‘climb with me’ sign and I chatted up the girl (Sarah) who worked there. She gave me her cell phone number and told me to text her up if I wanted to climb. Cool, thanks! She told me to come climbing at the gym the next day and I met a ton of local climbers.
I ended up working at the hostel two days cleaning in the morning and two full days on reception. I get 9 nights of free stay total, so that is pretty cool. There were a lot of cool people that were coming through the hostel around that time, so that was good. My roommate (Robyn) is a laugh and a half, haha.
I went to Puzzling World on Thursday with two German girls. It was alright. We sucked at the maze.
On Friday while I was working I met a guy from the UK (Lance) that was passing through the hostel and he had no plans so we decided to go climb. We ended up meeting up with two local climbers, Glen and Jane, from the gym and it was a great day!
Today I went climbing with Glen again. He is a bit of a local climbing celebrity because he’s set ~150 routes out of 800-900 here. He is very, very knowledgeable and a good climber. He’s been really helping me with my climbing and teaching me to relax and breathe more. No more scurrying up routes. On Friday, I led a 17 route confidently on my first try and today I led an 18 route confidently having top roped it last week. This is some real progress! When I was climbing in Paynes Ford with Brendan, by the end I was leading 15s and 16s (by accident, I am bad at reading guidebooks). I think my break from climbing in Fiji has really helped with my lead climbing confidence, I am not as nervous anymore. I can feel myself getting stronger every day too. I don’t do big long days like I did in Squamish because I am climbing so often and I am worried about tiring myself out.
I really like the rock here (schist). It’s not quite as reliable as granite, and is a bit gross in some areas but it’s quite funky! I find that there are ALWAYS places to put your feet.
I’m hoping to climb again tomorrow, probably with Glen and maybe some others. That’s about all I have planned so far, which I really like.
I have been eating quite vegetarian-ly for the past while because I am always on the move/meat is quite expensive here. Lots of chickpea curry, black bean dishes and eggs. TONS of kiwis (more vitamin C than an orange, more potassium than a banana!) and Braeburn apples (crunchy and sweet, yum!). Kat reminded me that I since I am doing so much muscle build/repair I should eat more meat, so tonight I am making a skillet lamb enchilada pasta. YUM