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A Trip to the Dam and My First Shave This Trip – Day 24
Wednesday 20th April 2005
The past few days had really taken it out of me it has to be said, and I wanted to have a day to just relax a little, maybe take in some of the sights. I also had the daunting task of shaving today – the first time since the beginning of the trip.
As I awoke from my deep slumber, I noticed the temperature had dropped a little from recent mornings. The sky had turned a colour grey, and a layer of cloud had settled above my head. This made things much cooler. I washed and dressed then made my way to the kitchen block to have my breakfast.
I hadn’t really decided on a plan for today, and it was only over breakfast that I chose to go for a drive this morning. A little look around the surrounding area wasn’t a bad idea, and would help me to obtain a greater feel for the place. So this was indeed what I did.
It may have been my imagination, but it appeared that most of Taupo’s residents had the exact same idea, and the roads were sluggish to say the least. I didn’t really get anywhere fast, but I was able to use this opportunity to take in some of the more local sights. The beauty of the lake is inspiring, and I could sit for hours staring out into the great beyond, watching the sun float across the sky. It is a perfect place.
Having negotiated the main route through Taupo successfully, I found myself leaving the seaside town behind me, and setting off at greater speed towards Rotorua. The road I was on was a motorway, and didn’t offer anything in the way of visual delights, and only served as a means of getting from Taupo to Rotorua. I thought about it for a while as I trundled along in my car, and realised that if I was coming this way in a few days anyway, I might as well wait until then to see it all. There was nothing else for me to see anyway. So at that, I turned the car at the nearest available opportunity, and retraced my way back to Taupo.
Back at the hostel, I put some washing on, and had my breakfast and used the computer to check my e-mails. After replying to everyone important, I decided it would be nice to go back to the dam and watch as the gates open. I had seen it from the river itself, but I hadn’t witnessed it from alongside the river yet.
I found a nice spot where I was able to look down most of the river, therefor being able to see the torrent of water in all its glory. It was a little exciting. I waited in anticipation for a sign that things were about to happen, then the alarm sounded and the gates began to open.
Moments passed and I was yet to see anything notable happen. You could see the water was filling the river, but it was far more gradual than I had expected. In fact it was barely noticeable. I wouldn’t say it was a waste of time, but it was far less spectacular than I had pictured in my head, and it was this point that I came to my senses. What was I expecting? Did I think they would just open the gates fully and let copious amounts of water thunder down the rocks and into the river! Of course this wouldn’t happen. I guess I just wanted to see something exciting.
When I came back to the hostel, it was time to have my first shave of the trip. The beard wasn’t huge, but it was notably rough and untidy. I had the look of a homeless guy, and felt the need to get rid. It took a while, but the results were pleasing. A few of the other guests congratulated me, and commented on being able to see my face properly, which was nice.
After the ordeal, I placed more clothes in the washing machine. I also decided to close the door and turn it on, which later resulted in clean clothes, so I was very pleased at this point. Later in the evening I had my dinner and watched a bit of television, after which I went to bed. It was not the most exciting of days today, but nonetheless, it was good to get some energy back.
Written by Daniel Stevens,
Founder of Roundtheworldtrip.org.
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