Sunday, February 26, 2012

Napier = Art Deco

Seems there was a fire that burned most of the town to the ground in the 30's. Rebuilding was done in the art deco style of the time. It was funny to see an Office Depot with this facade. The architecture was colorful and delightful though we felt as if we had stepped into the past.

This city also had a lot of public art which was fun to look at and photograph. On this particular day, there was a protest. Moms and tots were decrying cutbacks in preschool programs. They marched down Main Street and on to the public square at oceanside. I guess governments the world over have fewer bucks than needs.

All in all, the town and day were perfect.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Golf High on the Cliffs at Cape Kidnappers

This is golf at it's finest. Getting here was a bit challenging as the gate was locked and rather hidden. Once we found it and were buzzed through, the drive to the top was about 8 miles long through wineries and sheep farms. How delightful is that!

Check out the views. Turquoise water lapping against rock cliffs. Sometimes the putting seemed as if we were putting off the cliffs. Sort of like an infinity pool. I am not sure what I paid more attention to--the golf or the photo opps. Unlike American golf course club houses, this one was very unobtrusive. It had what it needed and nothing more.

All in all, this was indeed a spectacular day!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Napier and the Wine Tours

After leaving Jan And Dave's place, we wandered up the road toward the seaside town of Napier. Rick is always willing to stop where ever so that I can snap photos. I kept noticing the California poppies (I wonder if they call them New Zealand poppies here) and loved the intense orange among so much green. We stopped. Rick kept noticing the utility poles made from plastic and we had to stop so that he could send an image to his buddy, Phil, who deals in wooden ones. And don't you just love the rolling hills of various green colors. Have you ever seen different shades of green that don't look just fabulous together?

And atlasta, we arrive in Napier and not to disappointment. Our hotel is right across from the beach and after exploring this a bit, Roland sohws up for our wine tour. He is a Brit who learned the wine trade in France but followed his girl to New Zealand. It was nice to have a guide who knew the wineries and was also our designated driver. We sampled all that we wanted.

He took us to five wineries, each different from the last. I love the decor and the displays as much as the wine. I learned that a rose bush is often planted at the end of each row because it will be the first indication of a pesticide problem. All in all, this was just a grand day!