It was so nice to return to Peski CAP (cost applicable property) in Geraldine for three lovely relaxing days, such a gorgeous setting in a lovely manicured garden, reasonably priced power sites, and those magic words to me, a washing machine. Surrounded by tall mature trees, we are serenaded by bird song from morning to night. Peski has new owners, Dave and Sue, since our last visit, but former “camp dog”, Apricot Poodle Tui stayed on and continues with her job of welcoming visitors.
The chickens are still happily cluck-clucking around down the end of the garden, and I discovered an interesting garden sculpture. During the 1850s the legendary sheep rustler James Mackenzie drove thousands of sheep over mountain passes into the High Country to avoid detection. Caught by an irate station manager and hired troopers, Mackenzie manages to escape and makes his way to Lytteton to board a ship to Australia. He almost makes it to freedom – but as he his queuing to board the vessel, the police spot him and the sheep rustler is arrested. But his luck holds again, and although sentenced to 5 years hard labour, Mackenzie persuades the authorities that one run holder paid him to steal the sheep of another and he is released, and he is taken to board the first ship out of Australia.
Pole People, James Mackenzie handcuffed to a policeman
We’ve enjoyed several BBQs here in camp, including the obligatory bacon and eggs on Sunday morning. Just check out those double yolks – free range eggs carried all the way from our home town, Levin.
Geraldine is a lovely little town and we had a wander around today. A huge totara tree marks the spot where surveyor Samuel Hewlings erected the first house in the area in 1854, known as the Bark Hut. This was also the site of the first school. The tree was planted by Samuel Hewlings to commemorate the birth of the first European child born in the Geraldine District.
Commemorative totara tree
The Barkers shop, home of delicious pickles, relish, jams and cordials, was on our list of places to visit. There were lots of tastings to enjoy, and purchased several delicious products to take with us on our travels. Fresh cherries were on sale from a street stall, so of course a bag of those came back to the van with us. It’s such a shame that Robin doesn’t care for them – guess I’ll have to eat them all myself.
Back at camp again we took ourselves off on the river walk, with the path wending this way and that, and delivering us back to the front end of the property. The river gurgled along, the birds were singing, and it was a lovely peaceful spot indeed.
Down by the river
And at the property across the road, we noticed that the farmer has his hay all cut, baled, and under cover, ready for winter. That was a job well done.
All ready for winter
It’s been great staying here over the last few days, and the other travelers have been very friendly, always ready to stop and chat. And would you believe that the couple in the campervan next to us hail from Foxton – not to far from our hometown. Tomorrow we are packing up and moving a little southwards – next stop, Moeraki.