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Published: December 13th 2017
Geo: -45.4151, 167.718
We woke up to drizzles - and sun - and the most amazing rainbow right outside our place. This provided the perfect greeting for Anna & Mike's anniversary, which hasn't happened yet - ha ha!
We wandered over to the Visitor's "I site" and watched the cutest movie about Sirocco the kakapo, a highly endangered forest parrot (about 50 known). Evidently he was abandoned as a chick and imprinted onto humans, so he was considered a "dud" to the breeding program. However, his desire to mate with his human friends caused a video to go viral and he brought so much attention to the conservation cause he became a star!!! Wonderful story 😊 Check it out.
We had to be at the wharf in next town by 11:30, so we grabbed some sandwiches and our overnight kit and first took a smallish ferry across Lake Manapouri. Then a bus across rugged terrain and steep cliffs to Doubtful Sound, so named because Captain Cook decided not to enter it when he "discovered" NZ, because he was doubtful the sailing vessel could get ou what with the lack of winds and such.
It rained and rained - and the naturalist onboard was waxing lyrical about how blessed we were to see the waterfalls. And we were. Evidently all the water cascading down is runoff, because the soil is so thin, and trees and vegetation (which abounds) are holding on by their entwined fingernails, so to speak.
David did excellently as a sailor, only 1/2 dramamine.
About 60 people were on board, from all over the world.
Many young Chinese women, doing a one-year working visa program.
We were out on the cold and windy deck to see the views most of the time, so the 4-ish provision of soup (like England's tea time?) was much appreciated - sweet potato and crusty rolls.
Then came water activities, weather permitting. We laugh at that phrase - you will see why.
Then hot showers, quick change (we were smart and brought complete changes of clothing) and up for the most amazing dinner: 3 choices of salady things at least, many veg and potatoes and pasta-y things, lamb and roast beef and chicken and vegetarian and all the trimmings. Lamb and beef in particular were so tender! David got his beef from right smack in the med rare middle.
We were ready for bed! and slept like logs, with the boat tethered snug into an arm of the fiord.
By the way, as we were told, and no doubt you all know anyway, these are misnamed as "sounds." the early sailors were unfamiliar with the difference between fiords (glacial carved valleys that hit the sea) and sounds (river valleys that were flooded into by rising sea). These are fiords/fjords.
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