Sheep, banks and Queenstown

(16 Kms)

Monday, 11 Jan, 2016


Jonno was first up at 7.30 to go for a run. He was back, breakfasted and relaxing in the sunny courtyard before the rest of us got out of bed. With plans to cycle into Queenstown just 8 kms away, there was no need to rush.

It was a gorgeous, still morning and the ride along the lake was magnificent. It was a bit of a shock to round the bend into a bustling metropolis. Our aim for the day was to cash some 17+ year old USD travellers cheques bought for our travels in Vietnam many years ago. And what a challenge that turned out to be. We tried three banks which advised that whilst they took travellers cheques they did not take visa travellers cheques. Finally at Travelex, the girl behind the counter agreed to look into whether she could cash them. After waiting a while, we agreed to return whilst she made some calls. We shopped for lunch and checked out tyres, as I was finding the steep gravel hills a bit too much of a challenge on my slick commuter mountain tyres.

Still lake in the morning

Lunch in Queenstown

On return to Travelex, more time was still needed so we wandered back to the Harbourside for lunch. We explored some of the tourist shops in search of the perfect "Derek", a brand of sheep already beloved by Jonno and Georgia.

Harbour at Queenstown

A well earned ice cream

Derek no. 2 in hand we returned to Travelex and some 40 minutes later left with our cheques fully cashed. Relief, as we didn't want to try having to cash them again back in Sydney. We rewarded ourselves with Patagonia ice creams and then enjoyed our lovely cycle back along the waterfront. The afternoon remained calm so Jonno and Georgia took the kayaks out on the lake, whilst Simon changed my tyres, and I did a load of washing. Just like home!

Heading back to the Bach

Off for a kayak

We had arranged to meet Malcolm and Nicky for dinner at the Frankton Ale House, which was a typical pub style venue on a main road. After a quick discussion we agreed to adjourn to the Frankton Arms (better views and much better ratings on trip advisor, but closed on their last two attempts to eat there). We handed over our duffel bags full of bike bags, yoga mats, and now spare tyres which they had agreed to store during our travels. Dinner was excellent and we adjourned back to the Bach for tea and the remains of home made fruit cake. It was very interesting to hear about life in Queenstown and it certainly sounded like a fantastic place to live and bring up a family. Malcolm works from home for Sabre and occasionally catches up with Simon in Sydney.

Sunset over the lake

Tomorrow we hit the Queenstown trails again, and another fine day is forecast. Not sure if Jonno will need his morning run, but will have to be up extra early to do it!

Which one is Derek?