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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

Celebrate good times, come on… (Day 106

A day of unexpected celebrations and an afternoon in Queenstown with Food, Art and celebrating in style.

A great sleep in Keith the car, no wind, even the leaves dangling over were perfectly still. Had breakfast and on our way to Queentown. The scenery was spectacular, these mountains are tremendous, so imposing yet a sense of stillness and serenity.

I was map reading using Tim’s phone as he has a local sim and I hop on occasionally if I need wifi. We were waiting for an email back from a campsite, so checked his emails. Yes, a campsite place for us in 3 days time – hurrah – and at 3rd of the price other places nearby….also a messenge from Trusted Housesitters. We have been trying to get a house sit for quite a few weeks now, but no success. It was between us and another couple for a place in Brisbane, but we were pipped to the post. We asked for some feedback and the lady very kindly suggested we got some references, which we’ve now done.

I checked the email - Hurrah! We have our first house sit! We will be looking after Jazz and Smudge for 18 days in north of Sydney! We are thrilled. Friends Sue and Stuart who have now been travelling for 2 years now with their 12 year old daughter Annabel recommended this site to us and have house sat quite a few times. At last our first is booked!

On to Queenstown – The scenery is incredible, the gentle green giants caress the lake of brilliant turquoise, beautiful. And then the contrast with the noise of tourists (we forget we’re ones!), the motels, hostels, bars, camera clicking, wandering in the roads, the tacky touristy “entertainment”. Yuk.

We found a nice café called Joe's Garage. Food was delicious, service could have been better. They missed out on 2 coffees as we gave up waiting for our 2nd cup. I had “Gorgeous George” – sounded nice and our son George is Gorgeous. Crispy potatoes, Salmon, eggs and hollandaise, simple yet delicious. Tim had El morocco - lamb on pitta bread, with halloumi, tomato kasundi, pickled cue, pesto and minted yoghurt. Every meal we’ve had here in New Zealand has been great.

I hopped on the free wifi to Whatsapp George. Another Hurrah! George and Laura’s planning has been accepted! They bought their flat after a very long drawn out conveyancing and planning has also been a lengthy process as well, so we are thrilled for them. Another thing to celebrate!

After brunch we found Artbay Gallery near the shoreline. Some of the art work was exquisite (sadly none of the artists were there). They have an exhibition of incredibly powerful work by @sofiaminsonartist. She has mixed heritage, Ngāti Porou (Māori), Swedish, English and Irish and writes that she is always curious where she belonged and incorporates this into her paintings I especially love Te Waka a Maui. Anyone fancy treating me?

Off to the chairlift for the Skyline, a complex up the mountain that includes zooming down a track on a Luge, Mountain Bike Park, Bunge Jump, Big Swing, Trekking, shop and restaurant. Something for everyone! We had a lovely walk through the trees and saw such incredible panoramic views. A couple of ladies passed by with walking poles and I thought I could just do with one of those. And there before me was a long wooded stick – Hurrah! Very useful for our walk.

We decided that we needed to celebrate George, Laura and our day – so how did we celebrate? A big swing like John and Georgia did last year? A Bunge jump crashing towards the mountain rocks? No…2 huge ice creams – Hot cross bun flavour for us both, plus I had ruby grapefruit and Tim had apple pie flavoured ice cream. Hey, we know how to celebrate.

Next stop our Airbnb. We were running late so I sent a message, then realised I’d sent it to the wrong Airbnb! The one we’re be staying with on 5th! Sometimes all this hopping from one place to the next does get me confused. Will be glad when we are in one place for 18 days.

We arrived to be greeted by Joan and Percy. A delightful couple and a lovely home... even fresh hydrangea in our room. We all got on like a house on fire. Tim chatting with Percy about religion, education and technology, and I chatted with Joan about the Christchurch earthquake, how we experience life and family…This Airbnb is definitely one to celebrate about. And 2 nights here. Time for bed….in our very lovely clean and tidy room.

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