We peered down at the maze and snapped a few photos. Then we went back to our table for a long black (in New Zealand, that’s black coffee) and carrot cake at the Stone Ridge Café.
We had rented a lovely room for 22 nights, and our AirBnB host was thanking us for the business with a daytrip out of Nelson and into the countryside. After our café stop, none of us were in a hurry to get back, so our host continued the drive on to Sarau.
We walked around the old churchyard, a center for the old German immigrant community of times past. A shopkeeper told us we should visit the pottery shop across the street. Thanks for the suggestion!
A lovely old house was the perfect backdrop for the works of Katie Gold, Clay Artist, and Owen Bartlett, Pottery.
We loved what looking at the beautiful work but it was time to move on. We piled into the car and headed off. The next stop was Riverside Cafe, founded and run by a pacifist intentional community over 50 years ago. A little cactus garden bordered the outdoor patio. We let ourselves in through a little red gate. The garden was not large, but it was the best collection of small cactus we had ever seen.
Our host bought a few small cactus plants. We headed on to our final stop. He explained that he knew we liked birds and thought this was something we should see. We rounded a corner to behold: a very large kiwi!
The kiwi took us by surprise. It was so large that the eyes were made from bowling balls. Truly a sight worth seeing – and photographing, as it may be the only kiwi we see in New Zealand.
What a brilliant day! Our AirBnB visit was one of our best, and our host had been so thoughtful, but a puzzle awaited us: where’d our wonderful visit go wrong? Loud music and the sounds of a spirited party kept us awake until 2 AM the next night. What was going on? Puzzle solved: a party to celebrate a rare homecoming for our host’s grown up son with dad and friends from the old days. Fortunately, we lost only one night’s sleep, and they had a great (loud, noisy) time celebrating.