Two Nights In The Jailhouse

We woke to a rainy morning, which has been pretty common for us here in New Zealand.  We didn’t bother to wait around for our tent to dry since we were in a hurry to get to Christchurch.  Before we reached our Christchurch hostel we stopped at a sporting goods store to see about getting a replacement for my sleeping pad.  It had started to delaminate (meaning the inside layers were coming apart) on Dec 23, but this was the first chance we’ve had to try to get it replaced.  The folks at the store called the New Zealand distributor for Thermarest and they said they’d get a new one in the mail and I should be able to pick it up before we fly out of Christchurch on Friday.  Hurray!

Now, moving on to our hostel I can explain the title for this blog post.  Our hostel is located in a former jailhouse and we slept for two nights in what used to be a prison cell!  It’s pretty cool the way they’ve re-purposed this old jailhouse and our room was actually more spacious than others we’ve stayed in on this trip.  The building was built in 1874 and was a prison as recently as 1999.  Our “cell” still has a solid metal door and bars on the window, but thankfully we had the key.

The Jailhouse Hostel in Christchurch

The Jailhouse Hostel in Christchurch

Preserved inmate wall writings

Preserved inmate wall writings

Preserved original cell with artwork

Preserved original cell with artwork

After checking into the hostel I had to take our car back to the rental company.  It took several trips to clear out all the junk that had accumulated in the past five weeks we’ve had the car.  Unfortunately, we had a cracked windscreen from a rock hitting it on our third day and we had to pay to replace it.  However, that ended up costing less than the full insurance coverage would have, so it didn’t bother me too much.  Add in the strong U.S. Dollar and that’s another 20% discount. Booyah!

The next day was January 13, my birthday.  Caroline booked our stay in The Jailhouse so I could spend my birthday in jail.  Isn’t she sweet?  Her other gift was a nice long-sleeved merino wool t-shirt, made with New Zealand wool, of course.  It’s a great gift since my other two long-sleeved shirts have acquired some small holes and are looking pretty shabby.  We didn’t do much else today besides sorting through our gear to make sure everything will fit in our backpacks.   We’ll be taking the bus up the coast to Kaikoura for one night and we’ll be carrying everything on our backs for a change.  Should be fun!

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