29 June, 2005

Queenstown Views

Well yesterday (or was it the day before?? can't remember!!) I decided to go for a wander around Queenstown Gardens. Its a lovely place for a bit of solitude and has amazing views over Lake Wakatipu and Queenstown Harbour. So i thought I would share them with you!



Qmc_view << the view over Queenstown from Queenstown Medical Centre (where i got fixed and am currently having physio)



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Qt_harbour_view << the view from Queenstown Pier over the Harbour and towards Lake Wakatipu



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Qt_harbour_view_2 << The view from Queenstown Gardens towards the Harbour and the front.



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Wakatipu_from_qt_gardens << The view from Queenstown Gardens towards Lake Wakatipu. Also Frankton Arm can be seen on the left (The part of the lake in front of our house)



All these photos, and more, can be viewed at www.flickr.com/photos/jezarnold

I Have a JOB!!

Yes at last I have a JOB!!!



Yesterday I went to see the Manager at the Hotel about the Waitering / Barman work going. He had spoken to the Restaurant Manager and he had said that there was not enough hours going... but asked me to come back in later to speak to the Restaurant Manager.



So I was back at 5pm to have a chat about some hours and the job... "Are you a morning person?" he asks.. well yes I can do mornings (those of you who know me, must have realised that its going to be hell to get up at 05:15) so he has offered me some mornings (Monday / Tuesday 06:00 - 11:00) and also some evening shifts as well (Tuesday / Wednesday / Thursday 18:00 - 23:00)..



The problem is that its only 20-25 hrs per week..



Anyway this morning I get a phonecall on my mobile whilst I am on the phone to the beautiful Zena, and its the Manager at the Hotel. I phone back and tell him I will be there in an hour..



He has heard I may be interested in some Housekeeping duties as well. So I go for an interview with the Executive Housekeeper and after being asked can I keep things tidy, (of course...) and can I work quickly and to a schedule, she offers me part time work as well!!



EXCELLENT NEWS!!   So now I am working the following:



Monday 06:00 - 11:00 Waitering  11:00 - 13:00 Housekeeping



Tuesday 06:00 - 11:00 Waitering  11:00 - 13:00 Housekeeping 18:00 - 23:00 Waitering / Bar



Wednesday 09:00 - 14:00 Housekeeping  18:00 - 23:00 Waitering / Bar



Thursday 09:00 - 14:00 Housekeeping  18:00 - 23:00 Waitering / Bar



Friday Day off



Saturday 09:00 - 14:00 Housekeeping



Sunday 09:00 - 14:00 Housekeeping



all at $12 per hour --- 49 Hours per week!! I may have to change some days and reduce some hours, but I will be getting between $380 and $500 per week after tax!!

27 June, 2005

26 June, 2005

Rugby NZ 2005

1st_test Over here in NZ we have Rugby Fever with the first test of the British and Irish Lions against the mighty All Blacks... with 25,000 Brits, Taffs, Jocks and Paddys over here as part of the Barmy Army you would have (thanks for the grammar update daddio!!) thought that we could have played a little better for the first test. After all we did every one of our games against the provincial teams (we lost to NZ Maori though..) but intead we get thrashed 21-3 ... heres the full BBC story and heres the British Lions write up

Glastonbury 2005

Have just had my second session of Physiotherapy at QMC today.. The extension on my arm muscles is getting back to normal at last.. for the last 7 days I have been able to move my arm, but was unable to straighten it or touch my own shoulder (drinking was OK, but I looked a bit stoopid) .. Got more tomorrow...



Campingwashout So anyway who has been to Glastonbury this year? let me know your stories by email as soon as you have recovered from all the wet n muddy partying!! did anyones tents slide down the hill or look like this?? hahaha!





I hope Goldie Lookin Chain played as good as they should of ... let me know of any other classic Glastonbury sets, ok? I remember seeing GLC last year and they rocked!!

23 June, 2005

Job Update

Well its not as if I have not been hunting for work in this town. According to all the employers here there is "Not enough staff for the jobs available" ... bullshit! I have been around a lot of places these last four weeks looking for work, and most said come back nearer the start of the season.. did that and still nothing!! I have applied to be a bouncer (The man didn't even call me back, and then i broke my arm!!), a Bartender (there was 50 applicants at the open interview), a carwasher (didn't bother calling me back, I put down on the App form that I didn't want to work days!!oops), a garage customer assistant for two different multi-nationals (no response as of yet from them), an Assistant Housekeeper (second in charge of 15 cleaners!! good interview, but I wasn't in NZ long enough for the job!), a Computer Technician (had a very positive interview and awaiting a response) but the best thing so far is a Waiter / Barman. I have heard back from the Manager and he is just needing to speak to the Restaurant Manager before he will offer me the job... fingers crossed... heres the lowdown on the Hotel >>>

Situated only 4 kilometres from the town centre, XXXX XXXX Hotel Queenstown is just 3 kilometres away from the airport (and 250m away from where I live!!). XXXX XXXX has 78 units set in a colonial gold-mining village atmosphere, overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables Mountain Range. All rooms feature a television, heater, tea and coffee maker and many more. Guests can dine in the restaurant that is open for breakfast and evening dining, or enjoy a quiet drink by a roaring fire in the bar. You can also unwind by the outdoor swimming pool in summer or relax in the spa and sauna. Conference facilities for up to 50 persons are also available on site.

Well I will let everyone know how my Waiter / Barman and Computer Tech positions go soon... speak soon!

19 June, 2005

Arm Update

Img_0412 This was the first time I took my cast off and had a look at the damage below!!It doesn't look that bad because it has not yet started bruising..



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Img_0414_1 If you want to see that then check this out!!



Its even worse now!!its gone all yellow!! but I have now started trying to exercise the arm a little.. got to go back to the doctor on Wednesday next week.. will let you know more then!!

15 June, 2005

the blog..

so here i am .. bored now with nothing to do, coz I have a broken arm!!



So that I know people are reading my blog, can some of you leave a comment? at the bottom of each entry it says "Comments", click on it and type your message.. don't worry about your email address if you don't want to put it down, but it would be great to know who has said what!!



I have had a couple - Kate L, Matt W, Sy E, Simon B.. I am sure the rest of you read it as well!! you must do, because you are here now!!



Anyway guys & gals, make me feel a little better here in NZ with my broken arm!! (luckily its not that bad!!)..



.. speak to you all soon!!

14 June, 2005

oh dear.. guess what I have done!

Jez_broken_arm Monday 13th June 2005 – Coronet Peak -
The weekend is over and i should go into Queenstown to find work, but instead I decide to go up the mountain with Kate and Chris. Browns had a work do last nite, so the rest of my house were out on the lash and all woke with hangovers. Kates hangover is always particuarly amusing!!
So the afternoon we drive up in Chris's Telstar, and get our snowboard kit on. An email off Olie said I had a euro-stance, so I get it properly measured and adjusted... it does make a much better difference to my riding and my turns are much more controlled.
So we are just riding the M1 slope (one of two slopes open) and off to one side is the jib park. (see picture for accident spot) For those of you who don't know anything about snowboarding, the jib park is where they put all the rails so that you can slide across in style! Get it done right and it makes you feel good that you accomplished something difficult.. Anyway they have this 4' box that you can slide, and I have done it a few times before.. Kate goes first and I come in second..
Approach it real slow as I am not a 100% confident on his box as its quite sticky.. to be honest I think I'm going too slow. Get on the box and it feels fine, so i go for this trick called a nose press. This is where you lean forward and the front of the board stays on the box and your tail goes up higher (see picture)
The box is real sticky so as I get to the end I am actually off balance because I am leaning too far forward. I finish on the box and fall forward.
I land with my left arm hitting the floor first. Its straight as it touches and I hear this CRACK, and my arm flops on the wrong angle.. owwww! (actually I think it was fXXk)
Kates waiting on the side of slope as I scream, and asks “Whats up?”, “I think I have broke my arm..” “No, you haven't..” “yes i fXXking have you stupid bitch!!”... even in pain I still manage to insult her..
Anyway off Kate rides to get Ski Patrol, and then Chris comes down to see how I am. He asks if I want some pictures taken!! hahaha! “yeah! Why not?” he doesn't though, which is a shame because they would have been quite good!!
Seconds later, a ski patrol lady called Sandy shows up. Thats quick.. asks all the questions, like where does it hurt, do you want pain relief, and over her radio I hear that Kate has just got to ask Ski Patrol to get to me.. apparently Sandy was on her way to lunch and was passing when I hurt myself..
So the next thing is some more Ski Patrol show up, with the blood wagon. The blood wagon is this ski strecher with a red covering and blankets. After they have splinted and bandaged my arm they get me into this and start to get me down the mountain.. Don't forget my snowboard!!
As we are going down all I can think of is that my inurance company are gonna have to send me home, and then my whole trip will be over.. I really dont want this and I am thinking up ways of making sure it doesn't happen. All I can think of is that a broken arm means I will be only be out for 6 weeks. And I still have 11 months left of my trip...
I get to the Medical room and get put on the trolley. More diagnosis and more pain relief, shows the nurse that I have swelling around my elbow, but she can't work out if I have broken my arm or not..
This is where I discovered NZ medical care, so unlike the UK.. “How will you be paying for your treatment Jez.. Its gonna cost $25” ... out pops my flexible friend!!
Chris and Kate pop in to see how I am doing, and the nurse asks them if they will take me to Queenstown Medical Centre for an X-ray and to see a doctor. So off we go..
We are joking about it on the way down, apparently Chris was following the Ski Patrol down and then overtook them and fell over in there way!!.. but I am still worried that a broken arm means going home
Queenstown Medical Centre is quite a modern place, well used to dealing with ski injuries. They were expecting me, and quite soon I was seeing a doctor who said she should know more after an X-ray. That didn't take long, and very soon my credit card was being used to pay a further $30..
After a good look at the X-rays and no break apparent, the doctors diagnosis was that I had cracked the very bottom of my humerous bone, and there was fluid in the joint.
It wasn't broken!!! great news!!
They fit me up with a half-cast and tell me to come back in 10 days, to have it removed and another check up. The doc also prescribes some pain killers. Total cost $100 (£40)
I should be fine by the 1st July, and I will be back snowboarding and also working as well...
A terrible nights sleep last night.. and a house full of friends will look after me for the next 10 days, but I do need Zena here to care for me.. I really need somebody to help me shower!!
Concrete_peak_accident_spot Box_picture



Jez_broken_arm2

12 June, 2005

Coronet open at last :-)

Sataurday 11the June 2005 - Coronet Peak (aka Concrete Peak) opened!!



Me and Chris went up real early to get first lifts (everyone else had work.. still none for me so far) and we got free champagne as well, coz we were so keen !!



Coronet_peak_trail_map_05 It was amazing getting back out on the snow!!.. Anyway I have to admit they only really opened two lifts and the magic carpet, the brand new 6 seater opens in 2 weeks, along with a load of new terrain. This meant that only the M1 run was open, but this is the longest in resort (1.8Kms). I can see why they nickname it Concrete Peak! The sun does shine on the mountain but its best from mid July to Mid Sept, at the moment its quite icy and most of the snow was made from snow cannons..



Anyway heres some pictures for you..



Img_0382<< This is me with the Remarkables mountains in the background.. its only across the valley floor (this is the mountain we were driving up the other day, when the car started sliding!!) Also see all the cloud.. it looked pretty amazing, especially on the drive back down!







Img_0392 << Sam (works in the Retail Store on Coronet) and Chris (works as a Lifty) .. two of my buddies here in Queenstown .. Also my new Rome Anthem can be seen on the bench, its sick!!

09 June, 2005

Tour of the House

So here you go you lucky people.. A fisheye tour of the house courtesy of Mike Rhodes world famous fish eye Canon MV350i ...





Janine_room From the front door we have Janines room ..







Steve_jez_janine_bathrom and the house bathroom...







Stairway_from_front_door_to_living_room The front door is on the left and the stairs up to the living area on the right..







Steve_jez_room Me and steves room.. steve in bed on the left, me in bed on the right (with piccys of Zee next to me, I can kiss when I go to sleep xx)..





Kate_mike_bedroom Kate and Mikes room..







Kate_mike_bathroom Kate and Mikes bathroom..







Living_area_up_to_kitchen Living area up to the kitchen area..







Kitchen_to_living_area Kitchen area looking down to living area..







Kitchen_to_sundeck Kitchen area looking out to sundeck..







Sundeck_from_kitchen The sundeck..







There you go.. Any questions??

Scary ride up the Remarkables

No posts for a while as I haven't done a lot, apart from looking for a job.. No success there, but I do have an interview tommorrow afternoon... Mainly been going into Queenstown to ask all the bars and some of the hotels for work.. oh yeah I have had a couple of trips to Wanaka as well!!



So yesterday Kate had the day off work, so she invited me and her boyfriend Mike on a trip to see the Remarkables Ski field. Sure, why not?



1345 The Remarkables are the newest of the three resorts on our lift pass (Ohau is the third resort, but is about 5 hours away by car) .. Coronet is the other resort we will be using a lot, but we wanted to check out the Remarks because it has a much better terrain park and also better off-piste riding.. also its North facing which means in the Southern Hemisphere it is sunny all afternoon.



So midday and we get in Kate & Mikes Mitsubushi RVR 4wd for a journey up a pretty scary mountain pass.. it looks like a stone throw away when you look out of the house windows, but its about 25km away and a 45 minute journey because most of the journey is up an 18 km dirt track, which has very few crash barriers..



Kate_car_remarks So they we are listening to the tunes on my ipod, on this track dodging cattle and I keep looking to my right where its a drop to certain doom when we reach the snowline... the conversation goes a little like this>>



Kate "Shall we go any further?"



Me n Mike "Yeah..why not we have 4wd on the car.. no probs!"



Kate "Ok.. "



So there we are on this snow covered track going uphill towards base camp of the Remarks, and the road still has only a few crash barriers. We go past a Cell Phone transmitter with a turning around point, and Kate asks again if we should turn around.. "Nah.. its perfectly fine" chorus me and mike.



On and on we go, when we go around this particularly tight switch back turn and the car suddenly decides it doesn't want to go any further.. Kates revving and the car is slipping. At this point we all decide the safest thing to do is NOT to go any further and head  back down the mountain. So we put the brakes on..



They don't really have any affect.. this 4wd car is still sliding backwards..



At this point I come out with "Kate put the brakes on .." I look down at Kates hand where she is wrenching the handbrake out (think we need a new handbrake cable!!) and realise she is.. oh dear!! So I look at Mike and hes now taken his seatbelt off and hes got his hand on the door handle! (whilst trying to get his trainers on) .. I decide that this is probably the safest option and follow his lead!



Anyway we come to a halt and Kate makes one of the smallest "turns in the road using forward and reverse gears" and we start to head back down .. we are all a little nervous and Kate understandably more so, as she is responsible for herself, her boyfriend, there car and most importantly me! so she is using the brakes more than she should.. this (with hindsight) makes the car slide more than it should, so there we are sliding down quite a steep hill with certain death on one side of the road, and no real control of the car.. crikes!! I'm thinking "if we go, at least the view is pretty damn good" Mikes thinkign "Perhaps we can survice this fall..." yeah right.



We make it down about 150m when the car really starts to slide and it comes to a halt on the side of the road. At this point I decide that the safest place I could possibly be is outside of the vehicle.. Kate looks ahead and sees this corner approaching with no crash barrier, and decides that is quite a good idea.. Mike puts his trainers on.



The_slide_1_2 Safe for the time being!! so there we are on this mountain pass on a really icy road, and we have to come up with an idea of how we are going to get down. Luckily we all have mobiles with us and Kate & Mike know a few people in Queenstown who could help, so we start to call them up. Mike eventally gets through to Steve, who works Maintenance on Coronet / Remarkables. "Steve, Mike here.. we are in a bit of a fix. Can you help us out?"



Death_crash_slide_on_remarkables_1 



Steve is working at the other mountain today, and phones Head of Maintenance on the Remarks, who for a case of beer, will help us out! 20 mins later a Mercedes pick up turns up with 2 maintenance guys .. they are laughing at us when they arrive, probably thinking "Bloody poms, can't even drive a 4wd car in the snow!" .. One of them gets in the car and straight away 1st gear and drives away with no worries at all!! Me and Mike get on the back of the pick up, Kate in the front and we head down to the snowline.



So they you have my brush with certain doom! we laughed long and hard about it after, and decided we were gonna spend the rest of the day getting drunk back at the house!



Oh and they are gonna buy snowchains the next time we go up!!

01 June, 2005

How beautiful is NZ??

Well I have had a little time to myself to create some images using Mikes Photoshop.. As I still haven't got a job (I am looking honest!!) I have been sat at home most nights watching TV or playing on the laptop.. This is what I have created (they are on FLICKR as well...)



CLICK ON THEM ALL TO MAKE THEM BIGGER



This is the view from my house..Jez_nz_the_view_from_the_house





This is on the road to Wanaka Road_to_wanaka_text_1





This is on the road to Wanaka when we reach the snowline Road_to_wanaka_snowline_text