in the last few days, i've been hiking, river surfing in rapids, canyon jumping/swinging, zorbing, and whitewater rafting. i'm sore in many places, sleepy, and generally ready for a little break. this place (queenstown) is activity central -- there is a near-constant wave of paragliders over the city like seeds cast from some bright nylon tree high on the hill, and most people under 40 are either returning from or heading off to one activity or another.
the one activity that i simply did not get was the albatross encounter in kaikoura. if the ancient mariner's own albatross encounter didn't end well, how can i expect any better? (and check out how it stacks up against the dolphin encounter)
early tomorrow morning is my return to christchurch, which will mean the end of the new zealand portion of this trip. just a few days to say goodbye to friends and run some final errands, and then we're off to sydney.