As I got up this morning I was welcomed by the most still and beautiful morning. Ina, your home is gorgeous and it was brilliant to sleep in a big bed, I even had an electric blanket, luxury and bliss.
I got my paddling kit on, sat in the lounge and warmed up with a cup of tea looking out at the amazing harbour view from this cute little house. I wanted to stay for longer, but, alas, it was not to be, sun and no wind were beckoning me to get on the water. We had to wait until a little later today as to have enough water for me to get out of the inlet and over the waves. At 745 am I was off and paddling. I went past the young seals from yesterday and also was bellowed at by some bigger males (maybe sea lions) on the other beaches saying, "Bugger off, this is our patch." I was up and over the sand bar and paddling towards the head land. It was calmish apart from the backwash from the cliffs, it was an okay paddle from the inlet to Tomahawk Lagoon. I chatted with Nat and said everything is ok, it had been slower than I had wanted but the waves and winds seemed to be changing.
Our next checkpoint was to be at Brighton beach so off I headed, a couple of layers lighter and now with a tailwind. The swell going my way, I picked up the pace and motored along. I was enjoying today, yippee the coastline is beautiful and grand, changing all the time and keeping me wanting more. 17 km were nailed really quickly, in fact I got to Brighton before Nat and said lets just meet at the final destination. She raced off to find a good landing spot as I weaved in and out of the waves towards the pull out. Today was a pleasure and I am pleased and happy with everything. The scenery, the water, just the day was good. It was not a laborious day but it flowed. As I set off this morning I said to Nat, "This is either going to be a great day of paddling or a miserable day," and it was great.
We had a time limit today as there was an airport run to do,Nat heading off for 10 days to do some real work and Jase arriving to be support crew. So once off the water and packed up we speed to Dunedin airport. (We didn't actually speed!) I sit in the passenger seat drinking coconut water (thanks Hamish from Cathedral Cove Naturals I luv my coconut water) and eating, trying to get the layers of sunscreen and sea salt off me by rubbing in a layer of moisturiser as I am driven along the windy roads. "Do you have your seat belt on?" is the comment from Nat. "Yes," I say, well just about!
We arrive at the airport with plenty of time and sit waiting on the arrival of AirNz from Auckland. Crew change over complete we head back to Taieri Motorcamp and this is when the smile on my face just gets bigger. Paulafrom the campsite is gorgeous! Thank you for your donation! And Thank you for being so friendly, honest, real and just a great kiwi lady, it seems to be the norm.
As we setup and get dinner underway and ready to eat these two gorgeous girls come over to say hi. They are doing an amazing journey and have just arrived at the same campsite, they are horse riding around the coastline of NZ. This is something to admire! They left Hawkes Bay in November 2014, Larissa and Kendall are doing this because it was a dream. They are raising money for Legup Trust. We chatted for a long time, so much in common and so in awe of each other, kindred spirits. Check them out, horsingaroundaotearoa.co.nz. I have promised them I will be there when they finish their journey and we are going to celebrate. They have some truly amazing stories, go girls you rock.
Dinner eaten, kawakawa tea in my hand, I am so damn happy. It has been one of those special days that make you want to keep going, thank you Otago you have made me smile,
the beaches, the people, the sunshine, I am coming back for sure.
My smiles today (this is not hard):
THE ENTIRE DAY, It has been a goodie!
My thoughts today:
Dreams do come true, you just have to ask yourself how badly you really want the dream to be real. Larissa and Kendell, high five to you both.
Red, Cuzzie & Jase