Winetouring time

We woke after a good and long night’s sleep and crossed our fingers for better luck today. After skimming the fine print of the rental it seemed we ought to contact them so we called Jucy just to check things were cool (we were not really looking forward to handing the car in to their place in Wellington and wait until it got fixed or something equally ludicrous) and we were told that it’s all good since we got the stress-free option but we got some forms to fill out and then we will leave the car as originally planned in Auckland and it’s their problem how/when they fix it. It was a great start of the day to clear that out and avoid it looming over the day.

The wine-tour was however indeed cancelled, or rather they pooled up with other companies so we  were given the option of an afternoon tour of three wine-estates (Moana, Ash Ridge and Crossroads) and a cheese platter which suited is quite well.

Emmerson Street with the world best preserved Art Deco style.

Emmerson Street with the world best preserved Art Deco style.

Now somewhat hungry we rushed out and headed out for Breakfast on the Emmerson street (which seems to be their main promenade street), conveniently just around the corner from our hotel and took the first open café. I tried Mona’s diet of croissants filled with cheese, ham and lettuce but I really can’t get the fascination with croissants – it’s just breadcrumbs and air. Anywho, we took the stroller and walked along the street towards the beach. Mona got infatuated with a shop called Storm selling women clothing, I scouted the videogame store but only made mental notes for when I get back.

Juni was fascinated by the waves underneath her

Juni was fascinated by the waves underneath her

The beach was almost black and they had a nice platform one could walk out to and get a better view, it was warm but not warm enough for a test of the waters.31102016 - Napier  - _MG_8084

As we strolled back we realized we were a bit short on time, so I went ahead while Mona checked out hats in some art deco inspired store. As I got to the hotel and started change the stroller and take out the car seat for the wine-tour they arrived to pick us up. I was a bit stressed since Mona was just arriving and we hadn’t had time to get anything from the room – this is when I realize the keys are not in the packpack where I thought they should be.

Not only buildings have style in Napier - but even pieces of art get parking tickets.

Not only buildings have style in Napier – but even pieces of art get parking tickets.

Well well, off we drove and after going through backpack and pockets it was safe to say that the room key are not on my person – a good exercise for yours truly in relaxing.

Wine helps relaxation, and as usual the sound volume and dialogue of the group increases over time so pretty soon it was out of my mind. It was a nice group, and lovely wines –  Mona even picked up a very nice bottle to save for five years at Ash Ridge, we’ll see how that goes. Two of the group were from Arizona and politically republicans, they were however eager to bring up the political discussion and point out that they never ever would vote for Trump. I still haven’t made up my mind whether to sell off all stocks in case the apocalypse indeed comes but then again perhaps that will be the least of my problems.

For a cheese platter there's quite a lot of non-cheese

For a cheese platter there’s quite a lot of non-cheese

We got home and were let in to the room by the reception, unfortunately no keys found in the room (I might have left them in the room in the hurry when we left) but reception stated on the other hand that thought they had two for some reason so perhaps the cleaning staff took one? At least all our stuff was there so that was a relief.

We decided to keep the indian trend and picked the #3 on TripAdvisor and top ranked for Inidian take out – Indigo, unfortunately it was not as good as the re-heated one from the other day but a rather mediocre dish, I guess all good things must come to an end.

We debated whether to extend in Napier or not, it was a cosy town with all the Art Deco style but not that much to do so we choose to sleep on that decision.

Duct tape saves the day

30102016 - Taranaki to Wellington  - _MG_8076Wellington (at least inner city) was now considered to visited enough so we checked out from the apartment and headed to Flying Hangar for breakfast, another hip place with fresh organic breakfast alternatives. They did their own spicy chai (not the syrup stuff that most places uses) which was tasty and I had a veggie burrito to that which was above average but spectacular – then we were set for a somewhat longer drive to Napier and crosser our fingers for Juni’s temper / sleep schedule.

Fully aware of the hair, thank you for asking.

Fully aware of the hair, thank you for asking.

We stopped about midway to get a coffee midway, and had a minor parking incident. I don’t know who came up with the brilliant idea of having downward slanting concrete just before the end (or side as my father noted in Akaroa earlier) of the parking but the effect is that if you drive to short you get a fine, if you drive to far you may hear that something scratches on the underside (since the car drops a cm or two) – this isn’t the main problem however. Backing out of this is, since the underside can get stuck on the parking stone, and when the car backs out the plastic front part is stuck in place while the car is moving – until something that’s supposed to hold it in place snaps that is. Nothing a little duct tape could fix, but let’s just say that we are very happy we got the stress-free insurance option.

Duct tape ftw

Duct tape ftw

We finally arrived in Napier, and after getting some cutlery and plates from the helpful reception we warmed up the old indian takeaway we brought and it still tasted really good. Mona set us up for a wine tour for the next day but it wasn’t entirely clear whether they would go if it was only us so we would follow up tomorrow morning. A bit emotionally drained from the car issue and the longer drive we took an early night.

Communists and Garage Project

For breakfast we went to Neo, which was just around the corner from the previous apartment we stayed in. The granola was crunchy but almost too little yoghurt, four out of five cereal bowls from yours truly is the verdict.

We strolled on for a second take of the now familiar Cuba Street and even made a few repeated visits such the comic store. One store that we however missed the last time was Japan City on Cuba street, which focus on japanese products – I managed to not buy a huge plush Totoro (for Juni of course) but when I saw that they sold Calpis Water it (as well as Pocari Sweat) it was impossible to resist.

Doesn't look much for the world - but the taste!

Doesn’t look much for the world – but the taste!

Since we were on the theme of repetition we walked once again to Te Papa to spend a little more time with the museum and the parts we missed last time. It was well worth a second visit and when we were full of knowledge we realized we were quite hungry so walked up along Cuba street again until we reached Fidel’s Café.

It not surprisingly was geared toward a specific crowd but we went for some deal with two pizzas and two beers for 25 NZD – to our (and our waiter’s as well) we got the ordered pizzas within approximately 1 minute. Either they looked at the starving family with pity and we stole some poor schmucks order or they had spare pizzas of the exact type we choose. Either way they tasted great and even Juni liked them.

Garage project - with better art inside than the depicted lady.

Garage project – with better art inside than the depicted lady.

To finalize todays excursion with we walked towards Garage Project on Jonte’s recommendation – this is a craft brewery which is hip as few in New Zealand. They had had not one but two places, one store/brewery/garage where they also sold merchandise and artwork for each beer they’ve made. This was some awesome looking posters and names, but a hassle to bring home so we walked a block further to an actual bar (their Taproom) with plenty on tap and a crowd of beer enthusiasts. We went for a test flight and tried out four different beers.29102016 - iPhone NZ  - IMG_3571

It proved to be enough for the easily intoxicated parents we are so we took Juni in the stroller and walked back to the apartment after a long day.