In true form Scuttlebug made the trip without a hiccup, a solid 5 hour drive over countless mountain ranges and not one single problem. Thank goodness for the great mechanic who helped us out, and a nod to Toyota for producing such awesome engines!
We arrived at our home as the sun was going down, so we didn’t get a real chance to explore the surroundings, that would have to wait for the morning. A lovely map and some pictures with instructions had been left by Lily, the daughter of our hosts, so we were well prepared for looking after their 2 cats, 6 goats and chickens too!
After breakfast we had a Skype call with grandparents and a call from our host Patrick to talk us through the do’s and dont’s of goat herding. Basically, clip the dominant goat to a rope and lead him into the paddock, the rest will follow, at some point. We became quite the goat handlers and loved looking after all the animals and collecting the eggs, yum.
Thanks again guys, you have an amazing property and we loved every minute!
A quick history interlude here, as to who Abel Tasman was, as he is clearly overlooked by us Brits during the history lessons. Considering the dominant name that comes up in New Zealand’s history is Captian Cook, we were stunned to learn that Abel Tasman was a Dutch sailor who discovered these shores in the 1640’s, 150 years before Cook even set sail! Ever wondered why Tasmania is called Tasmania?
Yup, he discovered that too!
Not knowing exactly who Jacques Cousteau was, but having that niggling familiarity with the name in the back of our heads we pulled over to find out more. We walked the pontoon and boarded the old fishing trawler. Out of nowhere the boat owner Olly appeared and asked us what we would like? Coffees ordered, we asked him little about the boat named ‘The Physalie’ and Jacques.
PIONEERED MARINE CONSERVATION.
What makes the Jacques Cousteau boat story even more interesting, is that Olly had no idea of the boats history at the time of purchase. A rotten sales job from the previous owner if you ask me! He only became aware of the boats amazing history once he followed up on some speculation and rumours, and sure enough, he is indeed the proud owner of one of the most important vessels in maritime, environmental and ecological history.
So he turned it into a floating coffee shop, the best irony of all, he doesn’t even drink coffee!
What an excellent wrong turn and what a legend Olly is.
In the last year we have often had to stop and pinch ourselves to make sure it’s not all a dream, and feel lucky to be seemingly living a rockstar lifestyle, but in this case it was true! Over lunch with Heather, she told us that the house had been rented out to many celebs in the past. Including, the most notable, and our favourite Kiwi’s of all time ‘The Flight Of The Conchords’.
In fact Brett (Brit) had come very close to buying the property from them!
Before leaving and heading for the North island, we had one more bucket list item to tick off. A visit to the legendary vineyard Cloudy Bay based in Blenheim. After lunch with Heather we drove towards our destination, only to arrive at the cellar door just after it had closed!
Luckily, the uber friendly ladies who were clearing away took pity to our plight, let us taste a few bottles and gave us some history of this multi award winning winery. We purchased some of our favourite bottles, thanked our hosts profusely and headed straight to the motel at Picton to carry on the tasting notes!
Introducing, by Flight Of The Conchords ........“Foux du Fa Fa”
Take it away fellas.