DAY 175...Queenstown and Wanaka

Monday 18th April

Another day arrives and it was a day away from the water, to much wind and we had things to do.  Firstly I chatted to fellow campervan travellers, this is always so much fun and I have to say thank you for the generous donations to the bucket for the MHFNZ.  The sun was out the wind was blowing as we headed across the incredible countryside towards Wanaka & Queenstown for the day.

Jase stopped often to take numerous pics, it was stunning, beautiful and a blue blue cloudless sky.  New colours; bronze, tan, blue turquoise waters, autumn tree colours.  A total difference from my past 43 days in Fiordland.

It has been a busy day in Queenstown, admin, post office, bank etc then a wonderful lunch at a cafe, saying a sad, but very fond farewell to Jase at the airport as he headed back to Auckland for work after his great birthday weekend with us.  It was fun and he should have stayed for longer.  Food shopping, I was allowed into the butchers.  Neat Meat Queenstown your butchers shop rocked and the guys in the store made us welcome, we left with lots of yummy meat for the next few days.

Supermarket for a few items, then back to Wanaka to cook dinner by the lake and make some more phone calls.  Paul Caffyn, Mike Scanlan and then we hit the road back to Haast.  Along the way Nat squeals with delight as she sees a sign and she stops for her favourite fruit, fresh golden queen peaches, we have a box.  Ice cream for me on the trip back.

In the late night darkness as we left Wanaka we see two hitchhikers.  They are never going to get a lift this late at night, so a massive u-turn and soon we had Eileen and Mathias in the back of Cuzzie.  So much to chat about along the way that the next two hours flew, soon we were back at the Haast Top 10 campsite (thanks guys for your generous free accommodation to help this charity paddle keep moving) with them.  Nat managed to do her share of pest control taking out a possum and a rabbit, we also saw a deer but thankfully it was off the road, beautiful creature.  Cuzzie was setup for the night and the backpackers with the tent erected near by, cups of tea drunk, lots more chatter and damn it is now 1am.  Oops.  I now have only five hours sleep  then I have the weather to check, paddling a possible a maybe.  Lets's see what it is actually like.  Wind may pickup too much, but it may drop also.

It is damn cold outside tonight, the Cuzzie heater is on and I am getting ready for a freezing morning.  Today has been a long day, lots of chatting, planning and sorting, but still more to get done.  I am still not totally mentally sorted for this next leg and would like another day off the water to get prepared but not sure I have the luxury to do this when the weather windows have been so tight of late.  Bed and rest.  A short paddle, let's just see.

My smiles today:
This new horizon and skyline, gorgeous, amazing so vastly different.
Lunch in a cafe :)
Sunshine & the crisp mountain air.
The incredible butchers, Neat Meat.
Haast Campsite, Thank You! 
Hugs - they made me smile.
Being surrounded by caring and wonderful people.

My thoughts today:
Don't make excuses, make improvements.

Red

 Mathias, Nat, Red and Eileen

Mathias, Nat, Red and Eileen