hitchhiking rides in new zealand

Here’s a list of our hitchhiking rides in NZ so that we can remember the kind random souls (and whatever characteristics of theirs that stuck with us) who shared rides with us. Thank you!

From Auckland to Kaitaia (took 10 hours)
Nervous young guy who listened to Ratatat (20 minutes in traffic)
Ravi Stewart, realtor (took us 10 minutes to a better spot)
Courier Dude let us ride in the back
Dad guy (took us one exit north of Auckland)
British couple who had a son traveling too
Mom and daughter + their new hairless, scared *ahem*-less cat, gave us their number in case we needed to stay with them
Ukelele shoppe dude who kindly called Gentle World to tell them we were on the way
Mom and spear fisher son, told us stories of them sleeping under bridges while traveling
Farmer couple
Guy to Mungamuka
Spaceship pyramid masseuse guy

Kaitaia-Auckland (took 7 hours)
Father and son who smoked pot and had “business to do” in town
Tamil shipping man, with wise advice

On to the South Island:

Christchurch to Amberley (took 2 hours)
Pre-natal nurse getting off the night shift
Rugby sweater contractor man

Amberley to  Christchurch to watch “Hunger Games,” on Easter
neighbors- Don and Wendy (1 hour) who later lent us their bike
and back: construction guy, Cath (2.5 hours)

Amberley to Timaru (took 6 hours)
blonde woman without kids for the day
half-twin acrobat and engineer with shovels and humanure books in back
Dominique, a fellow vegan!
Dominique’s dad
older woman going to Invercargill.  just back from oz

Timaru to Dunedin (took 4 hours in the rain)
plumber political guy took us whole way

Dunedin to Gore (took 2 hours)
Bev to Milton
Funeral woman all the way to clinic

—Catlins in Tommy, the Camper Van when we got to return the favor and give Marijn and Cai a ride— (2 days)

Gore to Te Anau (took 2 hours)
Dimi, Bulgarian Christian woman who kindly asked if we “had given thoughts to our salvation” and gave us her number in case we needed her to come get us
David and —-, pharmacist, older couple from Dunedin

Te Anau to Milford Sound (took 3 hours)
David and—-, again! so sweet.
Israeli and Aussie young couple going on the cruise

Milford to Te Anau (took 1.5 hours)
Bruno! our Italian rugby player who serenaded us with his favorite Italian opera pieces

Te Anau to Queenstown (3ish hours?)

QT to Fox Glacier (5-6 hours?)

Fox Glacier to Greymouth (6 hours)
German gal#1
German gal#2

Greymouth to Nelson (7 hours)
sweet older local woman who complimented us on our smiles
International volunteer van- mostly Germans
anti-greenies man who wanted NZ to mine the mountains
Matt, the Pink Floyd-loving jokester who kept telling me to pass the gun in the passenger seat glove compartment

Nelson to Lud Valley (1 hour)
builder man

Lud Valley to Christchurch (amazingly only 9 hours):
CSer harley guy
smokey crazy getting hair-dye for his purple haired wife guy
Morris! all the way to Amberley, our new Australian game-playing friend, riddle master!
two musicheads back from a show in Wellington
trying-to-be-vegan guy who was eating chips and went to the Vegan Film Fest organized by our friends!
Back to the North Island:
Wellington to Palmerston North– no luck! we tried for 4 hours at three spots. as dusk was settling in, we paid for a train (the first time paying for transportation in NZ!)

Palmerston North to Fielding– Brent, the corporate man who said not to work for the man, but to let the man work for you (more apt than JFK’s words these days)
Fielding to Kimbolton– Tania, a monster energy drinker who brought us to her house to use her phone, and we got to play with her doggles
Kimbolton to Rangiwahia– Bridge, our WWOOF host came and got us. Phew!

———-much gratitude to all of you! Sorry we didn’t remember all of your names, but we definitely remember your kindness…


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