Saturday, January 18, 2014

Clevelys and Salzwedels of Geraldine AND Peel Forest

Having had summer on Wednesday and Thursday this week, we are back to overcast days, spots of rain, and wind. We have been trying to find a suitable day to visit Geraldine and Peel Forest; yesterday was clear but cold and windy so we left it for today which was not as clear but not as cold. Glad that we waited as it was a lovely day even though the cloud cover was vast. 
First thing to do was visit the Barkers shop - as the name "Barkers of Geraldine" suggests, they are situated right here; the factory itself is on the Barker family farm about 8 km outside of Geraldine. 
I picked up strains of music which sounded live; leaving the others to hopefully follow or not, I wandered off to find the source.  Turns out Geraldine hosts a Farmers' Market every Saturday from October to April, with music, fresh produce, and craft goods on display.  This trio was lovely - I guess they each must have played at least three instruments and just kept swapping out.
These albion strawberries are like nothing I've ever seen - they are enormous!  They are apparently sweet and delicious.  I really should have bought some to try but couldn't concentrate on anything what with most of my brain capacity being taken up in listening to the folk music.
Revisited the mosaic and puzzle shop, wanting to show Nick who wasn't with us last time we went.  He was suitably impressed.
Above: today's photo of the jersey.  Below: the same photo, two years ago.  The parents thought it would be an interesting comparison of the boys' heights, and it truly is!  Look how little the boys were.
We had brought along ingredients for a picnic lunch so popped in to buy drinks at the local store, then drove around until we found The Domain, a large park and garden area.  We ate lunch next to the bowling greens, protected from the wind, and thus fortified were ready for the Peel Forest expedition.  Ready were we?  Well, that was up for debate.  Nick wondered if perhaps everyone had had enough of an outing and wanted to go home.  The votes were polar.  The boys were not shy to try sway the rest to go home - they had no interest in walking through the forest.  Mom was on their side.  Dad said he was happy either way but leaned more to the side of Foresting; Nick was Switzerland.  I wanted to go simply because that was the intent and we wanted to show Nick, which was why we had waited until he could go with us.  No one wanted to make the call so in the end we tallied up our ages on the 'for' and 'against' sides.  Nick voted for both sides; the 'yesses' won out 153 against 135.  Ha!  If only the boys had had more years on them.  The 'nos' were counseled to buck up and zip the complaints so that we could all enjoy the rest of the day. 
Mom needed some help with the inclines as she battles to breath but graciously pressed on.
The boys disappeared ahead, eager to get the walk over with.  Unluckily for them we caught them on their return and turned them back around, but they did end up waiting with mom and escorting her back to the car when she had had enough. 
Here is the Big Tree of the Big Tree Walk.  Although not very high, it has an amazing girth.
We were home around 4 pm which left enough time to finish sewing a pair of trousers (all it needed was the button) and hem a skirt for mom; pack away the sewing machine, tidy the house, and cook a meal before Cody arrived.  Cody was the speaker at a Scripture Union camp in Te Anau this week, and Nick knows him well from the School of Theology.  This was the posed "oh it's for the blog so let's look like we're having a serious conversation" photo...

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