From Greymouth we drove 40km south to Hokitka. Hokitka’s claim to fame is as a producer of jade jewellery. The local stone is also called Pounamu. It’s a stone I’ve loved for a long time. My grandfather’s side of the family were all from New Zealand and on one of his return trips to NZ he bought me a tiki. He said it was my good luck charm and I still have it to this day. It holds great sentimental value to me. I wanted to treat myself to some jade jewellery while I was there. Unfortunately we were only given one hour to have some lunch.
We parked at the back of one of the jade shops so I quickly went into the shop; intent on buying jewellery before I went anywhere else. I did a few laps of the large shop before going back to pick out what I wanted. I gathered up the different pieces I wanted. I couldn’t find the tiki necklaces so asked one of the staff. She noticed the sapphire ring I was wearing and started asking me questions about it. Apparently it was similar to what a colleague of hers was wearing.
After I picked out what I wanted I worked out I could afford all three pieces; 2 necklaces and a set of earrings because the exchange rate between the Australian and NZ dollars works to our advantage. Yay for me.
Having satisfied my need for jade jewellery I began a walk around town. First stop was the tourist info centre to see what was in the town. Not that I would be able to see much today but I’d love to come back one day. I walked in to a cafe to buy a bottle of coke and the friendly man behind the counter asked if I was enjoying my tour. I chatted with him for a few minutes and when I was leaving wondered how he knew I was on a tour. Not long after I realised I was wearing my name badge. It was at that point that I only wore it when I have to.
After a quick lunch at another cafe I hopped back on the bus for the next drive to Fox Glacier.