Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Days 28-30: Nelson and Golden Bay

On Friday, we got straight to work on organizing our Nelson fundraiser. Our original plan was to sit outside of a fruit and veg shop and sell some fruit juices, but we couldn't get a hold of any of the managers. Then we found out about the weekend market, so we thought we could set up a stall there instead! But we were quite disappointed with the organizers of that, who basically accused us of using World Vision's name and taking the money ourselves, and wouldn't even look at the blog or our contacts or allow us any way to show that we're actually legit. So, we were basically on our own for this fundraiser. Thankfully, BNZ was nice enough to allow us to sit outside their bank, and the city council granted us the permit, so we got to work doing what we could.

Fundraising in Nelson
Our next idea was "Bigger and Better". We started out with a pack of cookies and crackers from the city council (THANK YOU NELSON CITY COUNCIL!) and went around door to door to trade it for bigger and better things! We had a lot of people who just wanted to give, but didn't want to trade, so we ended up with quite a lot of things at the end! We were going to have an auction or raffle with what we got, but in the end we decided to play a little game on the street. For the people who wanted to play, they would make a donation, roll a dice, call a number, and if they rolled their number they could choose a prize! It worked out perfectly, because we had just run out of prizes by the time the traffic had started to die down. We didn't make nearly as much as we had hoped, but we put the $70 into the account, and headed home, a little disappointed but happy to have made a little, which was better than nothing!

The next day, we took a proper day off to take our minds off of fundraising for a bit! Since we were so close, we decided to go to the Abel Tasman National Park, but by hitchhiking! The ladies of Nelson were good to us that morning! Our first ride was a mom and her two little girls, who kept us entertained until they turned off and we tried for a second ride. Then 2 more lovely ladies picked us up and took us the rest of the way, and also stopped along the way so we could take photos and get some delicious fruit! They also told us about International Biking Naked Day! This is a day to promote cycling around the world, for health and planet reasons, and the nakedness I guess is just to attract attention! Well, of course Sheree and I were totally excited about this idea, but a little disappointed that the one day we didn't have our bikes, was the day that we come across this! But we figured we'd go anyways, and see how we could get involved...

The Maori Spring
International Biking Naked Day!
We had a few hours to kill, so first we went out of town a bit to see a spring that is sacred to the Maoris and it was absolutely gorgeous! It was the clearest water we had ever seen! It was a beautiful sunny day and about an hour before the festival, we started heading back to hitch a ride there. We didn't think it would be so hard to get a ride a few kilometers, but as we were walking and waiting and hoping for a ride, it hit 3:00 and we were sure we would miss it! But luckily, a guy in a very crowded little ute stopped because of the desperation in our faces, and took us straight to the festival, just in time to see them start off down the street, bodies painted, completely naked on bicycles of all kinds, from kids to old people, excited to promote their great cause! At this point, the only thing we could do was smile and take photos... We had no bikes to join, and just stripping down and running after them didn't seem appropriate. But then...! We noticed a poor naked guy, struggling to stay on a unicycle! The definitely looked like he needed some support, so being the super helpful girls that we are, we got on either side of him, and gave him our shoulders to support him all the way to the end! We were pretty pleased with ourselves, that we had figured out a way to make it somehow into the festival! And we made a new friend too :) After a very successful and fun day, we hitched a ride back to our Nelson home.

Sunday was another rest day, and since we were in the company of such a wonderful host, we wanted to spend the afternoon hanging out with her! She's just the type of person I love! Relaxed, friendly, and likes to play games!! So we spent a few hours first going to a multicultural festival, which was awesome by the way, and I finally got to see the Haka! And then we came back home, did some baking, and brought a few of our new friends over (including some ransoms we met while fundraising, and the naked unicyclist) and had a games day! It was such a fun day, and after that weekend, we weren't bothered at all that the fundraiser didn't go so well... We love Nelson!!!

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