Cloudy Bay and the journey home

Our final night on south island was spent in Blenheim, just south of Picton, where we were to take the Interislander ferry from. Imagine our delight when the campsite was on the same road as the vineyard of one of favourite wines!!!

This region is Marlborough, the largest wine region of NZ, where apparently, its Sav blanc grape has single handedly put NZ on the wine producing world map. We drove down the main road, passing vineyard after vineyard after vineyard. An incredible number of different producers, all offering different cellar-door inducements to come in. Again, the background skyline of the snow covered mountains was pretty good, to say the least!!

Cloudy Bay is one of the longest established wineries, 25 years old, and we were greeted and served by a wonderfully passionate and knowledgeable woman. We learnt about the different harvesting methods and about the different storage and maturing, and a little about matching the right wine with the right food. All this whilst tasting 10 different wines….! Beautiful!

We drove on to Picton, more than just a ferry port, but unfortunately not enough time for us to explore. The kids had a play and then we boarded the ferry, an hour before departure, luckily giving us enough time to get the front row seats looking out the front of the ship!

The journey was delicious! (I said I would run out of suitable superlatives). Bluer than blue sea with the tree covered peaks descending down into it, tiny little former whaling stations huddled in the crook of the bays, turning corner after corner through a route out to the ocean. When we arrived at the gap between the north and south island, the Cook Straight, the sea turned rougher and the boat began to lurch between peaks and troughs. Looking south we could see the moutains of Kairkoura where we had been the day before and watched as about 50 or more albatros flew singly in front of the boat, playing chicken with the bow, swooping in and out of the wash. Their scale only becomes apparent when an ordinary seagull joined them in their flight! Their wingspan is about 3metres. Amazing.

And finally, if there was any confusion about the beard… is still being nurtured. It was a brilliant addition to the polar expedition we have just had but look now, for you might never see it again……


7 responses to “Cloudy Bay and the journey home

  1. Having done some recent reflection on the art of pogonotrophy (beard growing) I’m convinced Simon’s bearded look not only adds to his street cred but could also boost his trustworthiness (surely an an asset for any vicar!?)…”The way you gain people’s trust is to earn it over time by repeatedly proving that you deserve it. That, or grow a beard.”
    A recent study in the Journal of Marketing Communications found that men with beards were deemed more credible than those who were clean shaven. The only downside that I can see is if he wants to take up an alternate career in underwear advertising where ….” oddly, men with beards were slightly less effective than smooth-cheeked fellows in underwear advertisements.”
    Join the ‘save Simon’s beard’ (SSB) campaign NOW!

  2. Glad you had blue skies for your crossing of the Cook Strait. The Marlborough Sounds are stunning.
    Joanna has been down for the weekend. Yesterday we went to Leeds Castle and enjoyed the World of Wings show, though the largest birds participating in that were storks :-). Today we joined Tim and Linda for their housegroup picnic in Dunorlan Park today. That was fun

    Glad Plan A worked out in the end.

    love Wendy and Catri

  3. Still think that you look like Postordinandy Campbell’s brother … beards rule (but then I would say that).

  4. Just loving all your posts Heathfields – luscious photography and luscious language to accompany them. Looking forward to hearing more of your adventures.
    As an aside, we’re moved house now – into a Vicarage in Hutton! Long story to tell on your return but it’s all gone well – 6 weeks ish til baby!!
    Safe continuing travels and blessings for this fabulous family time!

  5. The beard looks good… the less on top, the more you should culture on the underside… 🙂 But I doubt beards look so good in NY. In India, 1940s moustaches are still very much in vogue, but I didn’t have the guts to go for it. Shock of the holiday for me was seeing white sideburns developing….

    • 1940’s, wonder what that looks like! Certainly there’s some salt ‘n pepper ij it at present and we shall see if. decide to keep it or not! Trip has been amazing so far with some great ministry conversations, New Zealand was astounding and inspiring. can’t believe that we only have a week before we head home, although i think we will all appreciate being at home and in our own beds! How’s the summer bean for you all?

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