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New Zealand Fibre Festival – The Journey (day 2)

Day 2 of the trip to the Fibre Festival this year was primarily the ferry crossing over Cook Strait. We had an 8.15am sailing with a check-in an hour earlier. As a result, our alarms had to be set nice and early at 5.30. After a quick shower, a couple of pieces of toast and a hot cup of tea we waved goodbye to Rosalie and Graham and set off again.  Being a public holiday, there was next to no traffic on the drive down to the terminal. I have been caught out in estimating my travel times in cities before and apparently the drive into Wellington from the Hutt Valley can take a looonnng time. Not so for us fortunately. The weather was again just beautiful and we watched a beautiful and colourful sunrise over the Wellington Harbour.

A few turns and we were parked up in the queue to drive on to the ferry. I was on to the idea of writing these stories so managed to snap off a couple of pictures to share.

Waiting to board the Cook Strait Ferry

Waiting to board the Cook Strait Ferry at Wellington

I met a very interesting guy from Auckland while I was waiting who was on his way to Christchurch to complete the electrical work on commissioning newly constructed chicken and pig sheds after they were destroyed in the Christchurch earthquakes. It was fascinating to converse with him and we chatted about motorcycle touring, bird-watching, business service, insurance and ironically, good van tyres. Half way through our discussion I noticed this guy wander up from the ocean and have a rest in the sun on the footpath.

Seal at Wellington

Seal at Wellington

It was soon time to be on the ferry so I was able to enjoy a hobbit-y Second Breakfast in the cafe.  The wind was quite strong on the way over and when I went out to sightsee for a bit, I found it was a two handed job to actually open the doors to get back inside again. I was again struck by how beautiful New Zealand was when we passed the hills off the tip of the North Island - now covered by a huge wind farm - and the rugged islands in the Tory Channel of the South Island. I had to settle and do a bit of work on the way too so spent some time finishing editing the Majacraft Spinning Manual so it could be sent off for a reprint.

Marlborough Sounds

View from the ferry of the Marlborough Sounds

After landing, it was a short 25km drive down to Blenheim and our motel, the Bella Vista. It was good to unload and rest for a bit and read my John Carter of Mars novel. The remainder of the afternoon was spent working on weaving looms and warping up (hopefully) some interesting warps.

A friend told us they were going out to The Argosy restaurant near Blenheim which is based around a restored Argosy aircraft. That sounded rather good so we made the drive out as well. The owners of the restaurant had done a great job of building up the story of the Argosy which had a huge amount of history surrounding it. There was a famous UFO sighting in New Zealand near Kaikoura in the 1970s and we learned that this was the aircraft that contained the observers. The aircraft was set up as a mini museum and we were able to investigate the interior which was fascinating. Plus the food was good too :-)

Both Glynis and I were quite tired after another long day so returned to the motel for an early-ish night.

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