We woke up this morning in our cell in the jail guesthouse and after having breakfast we decided to spend the day in Christchurch, so the car would rest for a day ;-) The original plans were to drive to Hanmer Springs, a thermal village where nuria wanted to go to soak in hot waters and she also hinted that she would have a massage, of course, that and Japanese restaurants are something that you can be sure will always bring a big smile in her face.
We walked following the Lonely Planet walking tour (more or less, as somehow the interpretation of the map was mistaken 50% of the time) starting by the end, following the river. We started at Cathedral square which is the place to meet friends and where all the meollo is. We failed to visit the Cathedral as they were in mess and I think is disrespectful to go on admiring the architecture when the priest is giving his sermon. Very nice walk and very nice weather. When the sun is not shining it gets a bit cold otherwise is fine. We visited the Arts Centre complex which was actually part of the Canterbury College and later University. For the art aficionados it is Gothic Revival. You could enter old classrooms and the faculties which are full now with art studios and craft outlets, restaurants, nice cafes ( we had a tea and a coffee and met a group of Spanish ladies who were on a 22 day tour). Nuria went on her own to visit the Rutherford’s Den exhibit that celebrates the life and work of this kiwi who first split the atom in 1917. At 13 hours nuria felt suddenly terribly hungry and then the search for a suitable restaurant started. Given her high standards, we spent nearly one hour going around, and as most restaurants kitchens close at 14.30, the pressure kept on mounting. She thankfully found an Indian that satisfied some of her criteria and looked actually more like a very fashionable bar than an Indian. Our conclusion is that the previous business went bust and the Indians bought it and added a small kitchen in the back. We postponed the Botanical Gardens visit for tomorrow as I did not quite feel like reading the 10000 different varieties of plants and trees they have, and this is the intention of my other half.
In the afternoon, we felt like walking with a stone in our stomachs, we explored the interesting shops, bars, boutiques, design stores and galleries in High Street area. Some of the stuff is very very nice, and nuria would have bought many of those having it not been for the fact that we have some 24 hours air flight before arriving back home.
It has been a quiet day, just walking, having a couple of coffees here and there and walking again.
Tomorrow is our last day, and we will probably do the same, but this time in the botanical gardens area. At 5 we will have to give the car back to jucy near the airport and then wait for our flight to Auckland and then to Hong Kong. We have already booked our guesthouse for the 3 nights, after some 10 failed telephone connections to another one, so second option is good for us also. We might meet with Beth and Paul who are going to be there, on business trip. What a coincidence!!