Leaving Christchurch and driving north through hills ablaze with yellow gorse, we stopped off in Blenheim for a few days on our way to take up a homesit in Appleby between Richmond and Mapua.
Robyn, her backyard and her cat Kassia all gave us the usual warm welcome. We were fortunate to catch the wild golden poppies in full bloom in the river beds near Blenheim, although we had to wait impatiently for them open each morning.
In some places the flowers were so dense there was hardly any room for other blooms. Note the tiny white-bearded one. And a single blue lupin.
The vineyards are waking up, everywhere are rows and rows of bright green leaves on delicate tendrils. Following the European custom many vineyards also grow roses at the end of the rows or on the boundaries.
We made a day trip to Picton to visit a jeweller who will remodel my wedding and engagement rings; the latter was getting very worn and one small diamond already lost. She has now designed a magnificent new ring, I can’t wait to see (and wear) it. Meantime I am wearing a $3 copper ‘wedding ring”! Standing outside a nearby cafe on the Picton waterfront deliberating whether to have coffee, out of the cafe burst Dave’s old workmate another Dave … we can’t seem to stop bumping into people we know!
We enjoyed another 2-for-1 pizza night with Robyn and her friends at Renwick’s Cork and Keg. Wonderful value, great surroundings. Their other food is very good too. Then it was off again heading for Nelson and up the Moutere Valley to our next homesit.