April 6th 1983

posted in: Innocents Abroad | 0

Snug + warm, we were awoken by Andy reversing the car into the shelter, setting up the stove, + providing coffee – quite the Good Samaritan.  The wind was as fierce as ever, but had been joined by its buddy the rain at some early hour of the morning, so it looked as tho’ we were in for an inactive day.  Once again, we whiled away the morning aimlessly, mostly by eating.  Tho’ my night had been disturbed by the elements, it hadn’t been by the rumblings of my stomach, so my appetite was back.  With something of a vengeance.  Other campers drifted into the shelter thro’ the morning, none of them happy about the weather, none of them having been dismasted quite as thoroughly as we were.

At something approaching lunchtime, we drove into town, resolved to utilise the facilities of the Youth Hostel, even if we had to join!  As things turned out, that didn’t prove necessary.  We did try, but they were full, + could only forward us to a mountaineering hut just a little way out.  Which, after we’d shopped, we went to.   The place was really terrific, far better than the Youth Hostel had been, + for the same price – $5 each.  There was a Swiss family there – a couple with a small girl – but they seemed to have about the same practical abilities as me ie not much.  However, the more practical members of our party soon had things going – a big room heater, a hot shower, even, later on when it grew dark, a generator providing electric light.  The place was soon as warm as toast, warmer than some bits I’ve had, + we were able to sit + relax in comfort, + do nothing.  There was nothing else to do – the rain continued to pour, the wind to howl, fiercer even than yesterday, I think.  But we were cosy + snug, turning down our Swiss companions’ offer to share a meal, once more tucked into bangers, mash, onions, carrots + cabbage.  Afterwards, Andy, Val + I played cards, Val, as usual, winning.

The two pictures show us climbing to the hut. Despite my description, it appears we had sunny weather at first, with Kirsten and Val improvising sun-helmets (and Val becoming Mrs Mopp as a result); in the second, with the hut up ahead, the weather deteriorated.

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