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September 29, 2008


Now I'm getting the hand of "relaxing." We're staying in a villa overlooking Hawk's Bay, vineyards, olive trees, sheep, cows, horses, lots of rabbits and unbridled tranquility. The villa is one of two at Telegraph Hill owned by Rose and Jeremy Gresson. Rose also owns Telegraph Hill Olivery where we're going today to gobble down some gorgeous olives and stuff she makes from the olives.

I've been learning myself to talk New Zealand. Like instead of "I sure 'preciate it," you say "think cue." And when something's finished it's "done and dusted." The bathroom is the loo. Folks call other folks "possums" like we do in Panther County which feels like home. Driving is scary. On the left side of the road and very few stop lights. Instead they have little tiny round parks where everyone circles like a merry-go-round. And you have to figure out which road to shoot off onto or get run over by the other cars on the roundabout.

Oh, and I've gone mad on the pies. Savory pies like steak and blue cheese made fresh in the mornings. Pick them from a display case and gulp them down--hot and flaky. Takeaway (to go) or sit in the sun on the sidewalk with hot tea. The ultimate fast food. Jackson's in Havelock North (where Telegraph Hill villas are) had marvelous pies, so if you happen to get over here on a trip...stop by. Also, some of the wineries in Hawk's Bay we visited that are worth a sip...Askerne, Black Barn, Church Road, Craggy Range, Mission, Ngatarawa (Rose has her own signature label wine coming out soon), Salvare, Te Awa, Unison and Vidal.

We're off this morning headed down to the bottom of the North Island. It's a sunny day here and we hate to leave Telegraph Hill...but must press on. Y'all take care now.