It has been a long time since anything was posted on E-Bus Stop, which is strange as the past 5 months have been momentous and pivotal in our plans to travel where we can in the campervan. With both of us now officially retired some serious routes need attention, however, while we gather ourselves, an opportunity to take a short interlude in New Zealand’s South Island arose so here we are for a week.
We flew into Queenstown from Auckland where we spent quality family time, big thanks to Debra who braved torrential rain and evil traffic to collect us from the airport and Anne and Willy who got up at an unforgivable hour on Sunday to return us there. Still say Auckland Airport is the best in the world. The main event was to see Mum. First day visiting was hard, the next day we went earlier in the day and had a happy visit with “old Mum” – significant nod and raised eyebrows at man slurping tea, a shake of the head when someone referred to someone else as a”silly old bugger” and finally a great effort to see us to the gate with a cheery “be good children”!!! I dread the time when she truly forgets our names, but hope there will always be flashes of her quirky sense of humour.
We picked up our Britz campervan, stocked up basics at New World and had first night in Arrowtown. All the superlative adjectives all strung together do not begin to describe the spectacular scenery which unfolds at every head turn in Queenstown and South Island. When I figure out how to get photos from the camera to the iPad, I will have the satisfaction of publishing the finest ones – this will be in spite of unappreciative comments on the quality of my photography from various people, and suggestions of a photography course…
We spent a freezing night in Arrowtown, but were unfazed by chilli ness. After an exceptional dinner, Trust the Chef, at Amisfield Winery we opted for a hook-up and ran the cabin heater all night. Lovely Britz lady had also given us 2 duvets so we we put one on the mattress and one for over, also, intrepid camping skills from 34 years ago – we lined the base of the cushions mattress with thick sheets of newspaper so the cold draughts could not creep up through the cracks. Hah such skills…..As we have spent time previously in the environs of Queenstown we decided not to hang around as the rest of the island called.
So we made our way over The Lindis pass towards Mt Cook/Akorangi. I slipped and fell on my bum on the icy mud trying to take a photo of the amazing tussock grasses in the Otago High country,damn boots have totally lost their tread. Happiness though is a campervan so I could immediately change into dry clay and ice free clothes and nurse my dignity. The Kea Track at Mt Cook was better and amazing. The whole area is a World Heritage site and once again defies mere words to describe, we had a good view of Mt Cook before the clouds rolled in and cold rain turned us back. Not so intrepid here. Stayed raining but much warmer at overnight stay on banks of Lake Pukaki, an incredible blue colour even with overcast grey skies; need to look into this as I thought the water colour was mainly a reflection of the sky. I am thinking of the grey lochs in Scotland?
Now on our way through Timaru to Moeraki Boulders and seals. Maybe a penguin.