The morning began with a visit to the small town of Haast’s gas station, where we met a slow moving mechanic who told us we shouldn’t worry about our car, “It’s fine.” Despite a bevy of questions, one being, “Isn’t smoke a bad thing when it comes to cars?” we had to hit the road to make our scheduled appearance at Franz Joseph Glacier.
“Hopefully you guys make it up…” was not the greeting we were hoping for. I was expecting, “Mr. Roh-bair, you look stronger than I remember. Chilled champagne, 2-Chainz and Franz Joseph’s finest maidens await in your helicopter.” Alas, it cost nothing to dream, but apparently if there is too much wind/cloud cover, the ‘copters don’t fly, and they cancel everything… this along with Pompey being a lil’ B, would not be a fun combo.
Toby, a cheeky, redheaded Kiwi, would be our guide, a very good thing and judging by his smile, we would be getting to the glacier.
All was not lost!
Our group of ten threw on some hiking gear, got debriefed, and headed to the heli-pad.
Any reason to get in a helicopter is a fine one—they are sweet, and as we piled in, the boys were hollering with joy. We took off, and the views made us doubt our eyes—insanity. Waterfalls left and right, a massive glacier in front of us, and a beautiful sky above.
The bird landed, and the hike began. As we climbed, Toby would ask if anyone wanted to try fitting through tiny passages, “Come on Team America, don’t be softcocks…” We celebrated the name Team America, to Toby’s surprise, and accepted his wizardly challenges. Every once in a while we’d stop, have a look around, in awe of our godly surroundings.
Before we could get too emotional, Toby had started to refer to the glacier as, “His Lady,” hitting us with Dad jokes and euphemisms as we egged him on.
“Yis, we’re in an open relationship. Not every man is comfortable enough to lead strangers into his lady’s crevices…” Toby, you sicko!
He’d follow every joke, by laughing, and we’d add on with something a bit stranger to let Toby know, hey, we’re real sickos too.
The hours on the glacier sped by, and we were back on the helicopter before Toby could say anything more about his lady’s (insert adjective) crevice. Throwing some PB&J’s down our gullets, we hopped back into Pompey, our lady, and hoped she would get us to the Milford Sound safely… we began playing a game called, “Try Not to Use the Breaks At All!”
Moral of the Story: Glaciers are beautiful, sick jokes are fun, cars that don’t work are scary!