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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Wednesday 14 December 2022

Day 1 on the South Island. Picton

 December 13th

Such a lazy start, breakfast consisted of boiled eggs followed by peanut butter sandwiches. The day was glorious and already temperature up in the high teens.

 It had been decided that Picton would be thoroughly explored but first a stop at the lookout overlooking the Queen Charlotte Sound. It was here we met fellow Brits. From Wales, they too had come over to escape the UK winter and are away for 6 months. Funnily enough they came over on the Interislander yesterday, and both Steve and Trisha remembers me taking photos of the Dolphins. A Lovely couple and chatting away as you do, the time flew by. Before we knew it midday had come and gone.

The Bluebridge Ferry

The Interislander ferry
 Toasted sandwich was had in Picton before then going off around the harbour. A Motuara Island wildlife sanctuary and Dolphin watching tour grabbed our attention. Taking nearly 5 hours, and cruising along the Queen Charlotte Sound we would be in search of little blue penguins, fur seals, numerous seabirds and dolphins, we paid over the money straight away. Not cheap at 124 dollars but worth going. It was booked in an instant so tomorrow afternoon at 1.30 pm we should be on our way.

WW1 Memorial

The walk took us along the shopping streets and a baseball cap was purchased for Ian. I'm still looking for a T Shirt but so far nothing has grabbed my attention. I overheard someone mention seeing Rays in the harbour so that was the next place to visit. 


By now it was late afternoon, and we debated whether to head back to the campsite. Thirst got the better of us, and we ended up enjoying a refreshing ice cold beer overlooking the harbour.


Back to the same site as yesterday. Ian walked up to the small kiosk where envelopes were to be found with the prices on. One just fills out the form with car details and name of owner, pop in the money and posts it in the box provided. Very simple and a good way of paying. But I could see all was not well for he strode back mumbling to himself. Whatever was the matter I thought. "It's that online booking we did for this site yesterday" said he. "$20 we paid on their booking website but the envelopes here ask for $8 per person". "I'm not happy"said he. We did pay, into the envelope went 12 dollars. "They owe us $4, and I'm paying no more!" Ian exclaimed. Blimey that's telling them I thought! We wait and see if anyone turns up.

Same location but moved to a different part of the grounds

I have also had permission from Marilyn to publish her recipes of the Portabello Mushroom & Brie Wellington (done individually and not as one long roll) and the caramelised onion that went in it. 

Thank you, Marilyn.

And wildlife


The only native gull on New Zealand. Black billed Gull


Jenny said...

Marilyn's receipe sounds delicious, I have frozen sheet pastry in the freezer and an oven in the caravan so must give it a go sometime soon. We are now at Blenheim and will be spending Christmas at Nelson so staying in this area for a while. Dont have what's app. Hopefully we will cross paths in our travels but I suspect you will be travelling faster than us, trying to see as much as you can. Do you have a cell phone?

nbwakahuia.blogspot.com said...

Hi Jenny, I used frozen pastry sheets.
For Xmas Day, I'm going to use the ingredients to make a pie rather than a Wellington roll; and I'm going to try grating the brie and chopping the mushrooms before frying them.


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