Queenstown, NZ and Christchurch, NZ – Wednesday, Jan 29th, 2014 and Thursday, Jan 30th, 2014

Wednesday

I spent the morning doing laundry and packing for the trip to Christchurch, NZ on Thursday.  I had some medical supplies shipped to the hostel to get me through the next 7 cities on my trip and had some serious trouble getting everything in my bag.  I had to leave a couple things behind that I did not have room for.  I put a deposit down for my African Safari in June and spent a few hours researching Cape Town, SA.  I headed out early evening for dinner at Pub on Wharf.  Another of the many restaurants in and around Steamer Wharf.  Both the patio and inside dining area are accessible.  After dinner I went to The Boiler Room, where I played bingo Tuesday night, for a beer then stopped at Monty’s for one last drink in Queenstown.  I booked Super Shuttle transportation to the airport for Thursday instead of taking a cab saving $30.  They use a similar mini bus that I have been getting on and off of so I should have no problem.  I also booked Super Shuttle to go from Christchurch airport to Southwark Apartments in Christchurch.

Thursday
Super Shuttle worked great to the airport.  The Air New Zealand flight to Christchurch was smooth and only a 1 hour flight.  Super Shuttle was waiting outside the terminal in Christchurch to take me to my lodging.  It was about a 20 minute ride and I get my first look at the devastation from the February 22, 2011 earthquake.  It’s had to believe that 3 years later it still looks this bad in many areas.
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After checking in I head out to see what’s around.  I find the grocery store just a few blocks away and pick up a couple things.  I come across Cassels and Sons bar and head in with hopes of finding out what is around to do.  Not many people around and I’m the only one by myself.  I decide to have dinner and a beer before heading back out to check out my surroundings.  Cassels and Sons is accessible on the corner of Tuam St. and Madras St.  The tables inside have swing away seats attached to the table making it impossible to pull your chair under the table.  I had to sit at an angle while eating.  The tables outside have no issues but it was too windy and cool to sit outside.  Wheeling around the city the sidewalks are still in rough shape from the earthquake, some worse than others.
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I stop at a bar by my apartment called St. Asaph Street Kitchen and Stray Dog Bar.  The entrance door is very heavy.  I needed help to get the door open.  After a couple beers I meet Sean and Steve.  Sean is from England working in construction rebuilding from the earthquake for the last 8 months.  Steve is the manager at the bar.  It is accessible with an accessible bathroom.  They have an outside patio that is accessible.  I talk with them for a few hours then Sean and I head to The Irishman to shoot pool.  I played fairly well and beat Sean few games.  I also meet Foxy who’s working in Christchurch living in Australia.  I talk with several people about what to do in Christchurch and everyone says “nothing since the earthquake”.  There is a Botanic Garden that I plan to visit Friday along with Cathedral Square that was heavily damaged in the earthquake.  I had plans to do the Waipara Wine Tour during my stay but there were no tours scheduled during my 4 days in Christchurch.

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