All the research had been undertaken, Farm Girl’s lists had been compiled, edited, finalised, edited again and finally printed out, the accommodation had been booked – it was time to embark on a Union Homestead School for Colourful Thinkers field trip.
So leaving the Homestead menagerie in the very capable Farmer’s hands, we hit the road. Not only had Farm Girl looked into the history, geography, and demographics of our stopovers, she’d also sourced suitably located and priced eateries along the way; she had a budget and a firm hold of the purse strings!
The first leg took us through the Rakaia Gorge and into the quintessential New Zealand heartland with the Southern Alps to one side and the Canterbury Plains to the other. We spent a lot of time oohing and aahing and congratulating each other on living in such a beautiful country before our first stop for lunch at a the home of a Homestead favourite vittles supplier, Barkers of Geraldine, where Farm Girl got “the best milkshake of my life”.
Then it was on to Tekapo, home of the most beautifully blue, sparkly lake, a photogenic church (Church of the Good Shepherd), a tribute to working dogs, and, being smack-dab in the middle of a Dark Sky Reserve, is a magnet for star gazers. While we’re still new to the galaxy-gawking game, after spending the afternoon soaking in the hot pools, and dawdling over a meal at a very well-chosen cafe, we wandered down to the lakefront and spent a very happy hour or so, flat on our backs, staring up to the heavens and trying to make sense of what we were looking at on Farm Girl’s StarWalk app.
Farm Girl has developed a keen interest in photography (with digital cameras, is that still a pun?) and, with the official Homestead Photographer absent, she had full control of the fancy camera. We think she did pretty well.
We retired very pleased with our first day of vacation. Tekapo is a truly beautiful place.