Today was going to be another lay day and we headed to a friends of Nats late last night to keep ourselves moving and motivated, rather than just sit and wait. The Sinclair Wetlands here we come. Yes it is a bit of a drive from where I last landed but, why not see the other parts of Otago when I can. We arrived and were welcomed by Glen and Chantal, what a lovely location they have and how cool, they have saved us a powered site in the camping area with a big sign placed on the ground to welcome Team Red.
Cups of tea and stories shared, warm and cozzie in their house listening to the rain and wind outside. At last we headed back to Cuzzie to eat a really late dinner and settle into our warm sleeping bags. We had the heater on for awhile and I just lay there listening to the weather outside feeling warm and dry, I was also imagining this next section in my head. Someone asked me the other day what is it that has been the biggest thing you had experienced you did not expect, well today I know what it is. I thought it would have been warmer in Canterbury and Otago, so far it has not and I am glad of my warm sleeping bag. Many thoughts run through my head some nights and tonight my mind was wide awake. I lay checking out articles on the Internet and just generally reading sort of motivational info and thought provoking material. It was late when I went to sleep well after midnight.
As per normal I woke early and waited for the weather to update and see what the cold strong southerly was doing, then I lay and waited on Nat to wake up. She was tired from our long walk, and also all of the driving she had been doing. Cuzzie has covered near on 10k on this trip and Nat has driven 80% of this.
The Sinclair Wetlands are stunning, it is an area that is being returned to all natural and all the local NZ natives are grown on site. They plant out with the help of local and overseas volunteers working on the land and they are returning this farming land back to its original stunning look. Great sunsets I have been told, also ridding the land of all the rodents and pests that where introduced and that kill the wildlife and birds. Glen told me that a stout /ferret/weasel eats 4 birds a day and last year they caught 15. When you do the maths that is a lot of dead native birds! Go you guys, you are doing such a amazing thing in this stunning part of NZ and you enjoy your job. I also met the coolest dog Pippi, a springer spaniel. It brought back memories of my childhood and our spaniels on the farm, she is a darling.
We did a short trip into Dunedin today to grab an upgraded crew phone but I have a thing about spending time in a city I have not paddled into yet, a superstition, we all have little crazy notions! Tonight is card games, Uno, and omg I was offered the chance to watch a TV program. Honestly the last time I watched a program was the Rugby World Cup final in Hahei. I thanked them but was just as happy cooking dinner, I have never been a TV addict.
Weather has calmed a little but it is still not suitable for paddling. We are wetland hiking tomorrow and maybe checking rodent traps. More Uno, more hot cups of peppermint tea and as I sit crossed legged on the floor I think to myself, I like being a gypsy a kayaker, I love seeing our country, NZ you are stunning, on and off the water.
My smiles today:
Pippi the spaniel chasing mice!
Cuzzie and her heater ..
Trusting totally in my basic inner instincts, it is a cool skill and I smile and trust it.
I smiled at solo me today .
A clean and a fresh look at my world on a cloudy cold and wet day. I smile when I do this, Reds cleansing is a special skill.
My thoughts today:
Believing, trusting and feeling, we should all stop and listen to our inner self, it is never wrong. Everything happens for a reason. I love this saying.
PS, the links are to two different websites with info on the wetlands.