Sunday, February 13, 2011
Alice and Tim on the first evening, telling us what was to come.
If you've traveled independently, the idea of a group can be hard to take. But the group on this trip was great - we were all of an age, liked similar music, shared just enough about our lives, and got along swimmingly. But best of all were our guides, Alice and Tim. Hardworking, cheerful, knowledgeable, and able to whip up a great meal, maneuver the ubiquitous kiwi 14-seat bus, and hike anywhere wearing shorts and no poles, they were gems.
But having them made this group of otherwise competent adults (including an internist, a child psychiatrist, a physical therapist, two librarians, a midwife, a retired accountant and a software engineer) oddly childlike. We peppered them with questions, perhaps because as people used to being in control, we needed LOTS of information. What will the weather be? what kind of sandwiches in our lunches? what time do we get back? We asked yearningly about the next trip Tim would be leading. The unspoken question: would he like them as much as he liked us??
Here are Tim and Alice serving our barbecue dinner on the picnic tables in the late afternoon light with Mt. Cook in the background.
panorama of the mountains (taken by Tim, sigh)
EAP at the picnic table early the next morning, when clouds had moved in
Later that day, we said goodbye to each other, and to our minders. From now on, we haul our luggage ourselves...