Sunday, December 14


(see map) trin: The first day in Christchurch we took a scenic drive to the hilly Banks Peninsula. The drive was long, windy and beautiful. Everything Lonely Planet promised it would be. In the late afternoon we reached the historic town of Akaroa which was the first French settlement in New Zealand. The local descendants still proudly fly the French flag in front of their homes.

In true French fashion we enjoyed a cheese platter and glass of wine at a harbor side cafe before heading back to Christchurch for the evening. Akaroa is definitely a worthwhile day trip.

Janelle and Steve arrived the following day. It was exciting to see her after eleven months and we spent half the day visiting in our hotel room. That afternoon we set out on one of my self-guided walking tours which included lots of stops for snacks and drinks.

A highlight was renting boats at the Antique Boatsheds and taking a leisurely paddle along the Avon River.

Back in Queenstown we had tried Three Boys Beer but we hadn't seen it since. Mike called the company to see where it was sold. The guys was genuinely happy to hear how much we liked the beer and recommended that we try it on tap. So, we finished the tour at Twisted Hop Brewery.

Janelle & Steve brought us crew shirts from their latest project, Benjamin Buttons. Mike and I were stoked to have new shirts and changed into them right away.

Our friends, Jesse and Anna O'steen recently moved to New Zealand with their adorable daughter Lily. We visited them at Anna's family home just north of Christchurch. It was a nice treat to hang out and bar-b-que with friends.

Lily playing with rocks in the planter.

We took a walk on the nearby beach where there happen to be a kite surfing competition.

Janelle and I on the dunes.

Janelle and Lily. She's just so serious.

The following morning we got up early and took the scenic train up the east coast to Picton where we caught the ferry across the Cook Strait to Wellington.

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