DAY 65.. Kaikoura & The Peninsula

There was no alarm set for this morning as the forecast was for 2m plus swells and a southerly similar to yesterdays, so we planned to reassess when we got up.  The plan was to head into Kaikoura, check out the point, climb to the top of the viewing station and check out how bad this swell actually was.  We did this and after a massive discussion decided to go and get breakfast, it looked a little knarly as the big boats disappeared behind each swell they went over, so I was surely a little thoughtful about going out with them.  One side of the peninsula was dead calm and protected but the other was getting the southerly wind and swell.  The wind was less than yesterday so I frowned on and stored my thoughts away.  Dispite making a decision to stay off the water it always haunts me for the rest of the day, especially when you are sitting in a sheltered bay and hidden from the wind, like the yachts and fishing boats I was looking out at.  

We made a list of things to try and acomplish today and set about keeping me busy and my mind off the weather and my land trapped day.  It was not a bad place to be based and we walked along to the Information centre to look for walks and possible entertainment for the day.  Along the way we did a great job of entertaining ourselves, handstanding practice and head stands a plenty in the parks and doorways of Kaikoura.  It is now a bit of a new team obsession and we all collapse laughing at the end of it, it's nice to be a big kid, nice to just be random and spontaneous.  It was great mingling with the numerous overseas tourists in town, we got some info and coupled with our ideas made a trip to chat to the team at Kaikoura Kayaks.  We sat and chat in the sun for a while, got some inside knowledge on the upcoming coastline and the good and bad landings further on.  Thanks Matt and Gary the pleasure was all ours.  Then we were off for a coastline reccee to look at the beaches for ourselves, some were as described as knarly surf beaches, and knarly they were.

Firstly the Reserve Hutt Cafe in Kaikoura.  Their service was amazing, the food damn good and we will be back there!  It was great to know what was ahead of us.  As we drove the seas seem to have flattened and we checked the weather app, there was a window maybe to at least nail the peninsula today!  An abrupt U turn was made at Oaro Beach and we quickly headed back so I could push around the Peninsula.  It had been eating away at my brain all morning and I was happy to just get around the corner and have two hours on the water, ticking off and moving forward, albeit just a small baby step.  

Off I speed onto the water and despite the big swell it was comfortable enough out at the point, then calmed as I got around and headed into Gooch Bay.  A big rolling swell, a little backwash from the rocks, a few seals and it was fun.  The sun was shining and I was in my happy place on the water, brilliant.  Before I knew it I could see the team and as promised I headed in.  As I headed in I bumped into the Kaikoura Kaykers on a tour.  I stopped and chatted, I was tempted to go seal watching with them, but could see the team waiting patiently for me and we still had stuff to do on dry land.  A safe, smooth, dry landing, T2 was back up on the roof within minutes.  How lucky am I at the moment to have two crew with me!  It would be so nice if it was like this everyday, I will be spoilt for a while yet until Trish heads back to Uni in Feb.  I also think it is great for the support crew moral to have a buddy to chat to and keep each other entertained on some of the long solo days, not everybody is like me and enjoys hours of solo time.

We are back into the town now to tick off more of my To Do List, Nat made a suggestion the other day that on my days stuck off the water I need to keep busy, so why not do some knitting!  I can knit and now the suggestion is a reality, I have wool and needles and (lol) a scarf is in the making!  On the land based days wool donations may be needed if I get stuck for a long time.  We wandered in and out of the shops, had another great coffee in a cool little outdoor popup cafe area.  Trish and Jase had homemade sorbets and we sat in brightly coloured cape code chairs, watched people play chess and draughts, there were kids playing with water pistols.  What a cool little town this is, Kaikoura is special and it is a place I will return to for sure.

Back along the road we speed to an Organic Honey Farm that we had spotted on our travels today (another small hobby of mine, bees, beehives and beekeeping).  Nick at Mountain Honey ( thank you for taking the time to chat it was brilliant, extremely interesting and we will be ordering your Borage Honey as soon as it is available.  Until then we have some of the Manukau to keep me going and the Mead you are brewing sounds amazing, we will be watching for updates on this new product.

It is time now to chill in Cuzzie.  Jase is flying the kite on the beach, trying to divebomb the flying seagulls.  Tricia has gone for a run, the clouds are building over the hills and the overnight weather is for rain shows, clearing by 9am.  The new years weather report is for bigger swells and bigger winds, a surfers paradise, but not mine.  So a big long walk/hike is planned, a quick food shop then a reflection on the day.

My smiles today:
The amazing vibe from the Kaikoura locals!  Every cafe, store and location we have been in has been great.  Thank you.
Getting out on the water, even if it was just for a couple of hours.  Now that made my day.
Watching new campers setup for tomorrow nights party.
My Handstands, by the door and by the whalebones sculptures
The honey man today, this totally made me smile.  Your place rocked.!  I loved it as I luv bees, they make me smile.  Everyday in my garden at home when I am in my vege patch they are there and they make me smile.  Cool little creatures, thanks Nick.

My Thoughts today:
What this journey has helped me feel since leaving, it is so nice to be nice to all and be treated with the same vibe, it is not really hard.

 "Treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again."

My Soapbox Moment:
As I stood waiting to order a coffee this afternoon I watched as an amazingly patient and friendly barista served us and worked happily and quickly.  She used all her skills when spoken to very rudely and abruptly by a customer who barged her way towards the counter, and waved her selfie stick (selfie sticks are a subject for another day).  There was no need and nothing warranting this customers behaviour, infact her rudeness was totally unacceptable.  Why do some treat others this way?  It made me leave a tip in the jar, a smile and a wink saying, "You are doing really well dealing with this rudeness."  I passed by after my coffee and thanked her again for the amazing coffee, her friendly service and gave her a big smile.  She was gorgeous, the customer was not so gorgeous, a shame.


Tomorrow, my reflection on my 2015.  Until then,