‘Is that South Island?’ – Wellington to Picton

18th August

The 5am start was a struggle. But no matter, as we were headed to the South Island, where we were promised even more stunning views and generally a crazier time.

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Unfortunately, the ferry ride was mostly in the rain and so we weren’t able to see that much. But we did catch sight of some small dolphins and the landscape, as we came into the south island, was pretty spectacular.

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I was a tad confused at the beginning as I thought that the two islands were closer and so believed we were seeing the South Island before we had even left Wellington harbour. John put me right.
On the bus and out of the rain. We would only be in this bus for a couple of hours but still set about bonding. A quick stop to taste some of the Marlborough Sounds’ famous wine. Two dollars allowed us to taste five wines. Great value for money. The two year old Pinot Gris was a popular, as was the Gewurztraminer, which tasted of Turkish delight.

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We were quickly hustled into the bus to our stop Nelson, sunshine capital of the South. But it’s raining. Hard.

Catching up on some well needed sleep. Both of us woke when Postie abruptly stopped outside our hostel and practically threw us off his bus. We were happy to be leaving these guys behind. Can’t always get a great bus.

Tasman Backpackers was immediately welcoming. There is an overwhelming (in a positive way) sense of homeliness about the place. There’s free breakfast in the morning. Even free wifi. And best of all, complimentary chocolate pudding every night. Hot water-bottles and extra blankets are in the room. There’s also a stove and a cat. Bliss.

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We’re not sure what we were aiming for, or what we really achieved but it tasted good and that’s what counts right?
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Our free pudding was very well recieved

The night passed chatting to fellow travellers and eating good food. We were just beginning to relax when I fancied checking our Stray itinerary. To our shock we realised we weren’t booked onto the next bus out of Nelson and knew that that bus was fully booked.

Stranded.

We were so shocked and stressed at our faux pas that we even effected our new friends, who pleaded with us to get the situation rectified. There was no reason to panic at all and all is resolved. Still, everyone loves a mass panic.

It’s an early start tomorrow to ring stray and get things finalised.

Flo x

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