Day 127...Goodbye Southland

Tuesday 1st March

Apparently it is the first day of Autumn, now that is a sobering thought.  It is cold in the town of Invercargill, shoes and socks, woollen hat, leggings, hoodie and my sharkskin jacket, and another day of wind and some morning rain.  We had a few final things to get done, people to say thank you to and a couple of electronic charging issues to get sorted.  We spent the morning in and out of electric stores as I satisfied my concern of having enough power packs and rechargeable battery packs for this next solo leg.  Nat was amazing at sorting out the many different options and fending off the eager salesmen in the stores by knowing way more than them about the products we were looking at.  Purchases made and we were both satisfied.

We sadly and reluctantly returned the vacuum pack unit to Tim, (thank you matey) said our farewells and know we will be catching up with this wonderful man and family before too long.  Thanks for the eggs and the bacon, brilliant breakfast food.  We hunted for Bluff oysters today but nothing until tomorrow and honestly we tried every contact we could.  Nothing available, still being sorted and tomorrow is the day.  I can not wait.  Raw with vinegar and also I am going to cook some!  Fried oysters remind me of my Dad, he adored them.

It is a long time since I have been able to even contemplate paddling, the ocean has been out of control and past my safety limits but it seems tomorrow may be okay.  I am sure you all wonder how I am coping, well when it is so windy and rough the coping and downtime I am okay with.  Today I went for a long walk in Queens Park, Invercargill.  Nat had told me how beautiful it was and she was not wrong, it was really nice to walk around, wrapped up and warm just enjoying the open spaces.  Great for my mind and body.  Talking about my body I have had a couple of sore fingers after some of my bigger paddle days so I headed to see Karl at Sportsmed Southern Physio.  Thanks Karl for being so generous and I will keep you posted as my trip continues.  It was nice to know it is nothing to be concerned about and I will massage and stretch when I am able, that is a promise from this obsessive redhead.

Back to Nat who was having rest in Cuzzie after our final lunch in town at The Batch, thanks team it was great food and lovely service as usual.  We have headed to Bluff for the night, on the way we drove up to the viewpoint to look out over where I have come from and where I am going to.  Gosh it was cold and windy up on the top but he view was spectacular.

Cuzzie and all are now tucked up in the Bluff campsite  We have been a regular camper at this place for a little while now, it seems that some places we gravitate to and it takes a long time to move on.  Bluff and Invercargill has seen al ot of us all in the past few weeks, it has been enjoyable I have to say, everyone has been so helpful and wonderful, thanks to you all.  Everything is charging and we are cooking up a storm tonight, I am keen to try and push onwards and upwards now so let's see what this weather can do to help me.

My smiles today:
Warm cosy house and waking up in a bed but still using and in my sleeping bag.
Nat still rocking around the entire day in bare feet, it was 8 - 13 degrees today, too cold for me and bare feet.
Trying to locate bluff oysters today, no luck!
The offer from Tim that Amber was keen to help out on Redz NZ Journey as crew.  Amber you may well get a call.
The feeling of calmness in the campsite his evening, the wind is dropping, yippee!
Cuzzie, my campervan, she makes me smile everyday, I actually love this wandering gypsy life.
Meeting truly generous amazing people.  Thanks for everything to the Bluff, Invercargill & Stewart Island locals.  All of your help is and has been amazing.

My thoughts today:
No matter how educated, talented, rich or cool you think you are, how you treat people ultimately says it all.


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