A Travellerspoint blog

Change of Course...

Three Months!

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For now, my time in the wine industry is to be put on hold. A return to coffee; I will be barista-ing at the Cardrona Ski Resort on the South Island in Wanaka!

I have left the Celtic Winery from which I gained knowledge about the simplicity of winemaking. I realize that really anyone can make wine organically if you have the time, fruit or grapes, and creative mind to make it happen. I also gained an extended kiwi family to whom I owe many thanks for the hospitality, great conversation, and crazy documentaries we shared.

Currently, I am on the ferry once again headed down to the South Island. I am leaving Wellington from where I have just spent the past few days crafting up a storm and boogie-ing down with my good friend Maren. Now it's adventure time again and I will be travelling down the West Coast to see yet more beauty of New Zealand.

I start work June 19th and the season lasts until October 2nd. I will have a permanent address for a few months where you can send me letters! Although I will be leaving the WWOOFing scheme for a while, I am very excited to be laying down some roots in Wanaka and looking forward to working on the mountain!

Posted by NikkiLucas 15:15 Comments (0)

Two Months and a Weekish

Just catching the end of the sunshiney days

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I have just returned to the Celtic Winery after hiking the Abel Tasman National Park trek which was amazing! I posted some photos of the beaches and trails I hiked. I was on the tramp for two days and went about 32 and some kilometers which is about 20 miles. I hiked the whole thing with my backpack which held all my clothes for 6 days, food for the tramp, sleeping bag, etc., which at the end of my trip weighed about 25lbs. Pretty exciting accomplishment! The tramp itself was not very populated (as it is off season and we are going into winter now), but it was beautiful and sunny while I was hiking.

The trip down to Nelson, on the South Island, was almost as big of an adventure and the tramp itself! I hitched several rides from kind and quirky characters to get there, stayed in some sweet backpackers and met lots of friendly fellow travellers. I also got to check out the Nelson Art/Farmers market Saturday morning after my tramp which held lots of neat nics and knacks. Saturday night I stayed with a friend from home who is studying abroad in Wellington for the semester.

Back at the winery again, we are bottling Celtic Mead, Plum Port, and if the brew is right, Pear Cider. Its pretty cool doing the entire process from adding the yeast and sugar (which I have done for the feijoa wine and also for the secondary fermentation of the grape wine) to pumping it into the bottles, corking it, labeling it, and boxing it up , ready to be sold! Tomorrow I'll be doing some more bottling, and also making a new 'open' sign from copper to add to the Celtic atmosphere.

Posted by NikkiLucas 18:51 Comments (0)

At the Celtic Winery...

It's been about 1 1/2months

New Zealand presents itself with new suprises daily. I feel so lucky to be in this beautiful country surrounded by beautiful people. It is important to take deep breathes and absorb what is around you.

During my week of travelling from the South to North Island, I have met marvelous travellers and Kiwis of which I was graced to share their homes and meals. There is so much I could say about my travels here, but there's too much to tell about a days travel to do it any justice.
Yesterday, I arrived at the Celtic Winery where I am and will be WWOOFing and learning a great deal about the organic wine processes. Today, I labeled some Feijoa fruit wine by hand, peeling and sticking the labels on the clean skin bottles. Feijoa is a native fruit which has the texture of a pear/banana and tastes like perfume and is about the size of a Kiwi fruit. The next step was to put the foils on the tops of the bottles which I did with a tool like a hair dryer and just used the heat to basically melt the foils on.

Here at the Celtic Winery, they have been using celtic/organic ways of producing various fruit wines for about ten years. Tomorrow, we will be getting in some Malbec and Merlot grapes from Hawkes Bay to do some crushing (by foot) and destemming (by hand). I am very excited about this whole process.

Also today, I met Goose, the goose and Barbra and Pip the sheep to whom I fed the weeds from the vege garden. There are also a handful of gorgeous horses that graze around outside my window which are the neighbors racing horses. After the days work, I went for a run on Hokio Beach which was stunning. There were about 5 people on the entire beach. I saw full fish skeletons and loads of crab shells, a dead jelly fish and heaps of cool looking shells.

Looking forward to tomorrow.

Posted by NikkiLucas 22:18 Comments (0)

Where I'll be WWOOFing

In Levin

http://www.celticwinery.com/index.html

Posted by NikkiLucas 01:34 Comments (0)

One Month and a Week!

Last Day Here!

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Done picking! Harvest is over! I've learned a lot about grape diseases, what's good and what's bad. I've been having a marvelous time with the other WWOOfers, but it will soon be time to move on. Most of us will go on to a music festival in the Caitlin's and then split off from there. I plan to hitch a ride up to the North Island and continue WWOOFing at a Celtic winery in Levin.
As winter is on the horizon, snow is beggining to dust the mountain tops and the leaves glitter the ground with yellow and red. The weather is still sunny and the air crisp. I'm hoping the winter brings lots of great snowboardng and new snowy adventures. However I am jealous that it will be nice and sunny in California!
On our days off here, I have learn to knit and have made myself a beanie! We have also been to the surrounding towns to explore and experience some city life. We also went on a small hike near Bannockburn one afternoon. Today is my last day here in Bannockburn and I have had a wonderful time meeting the coolest and silliest people. I have learned heaps about grapes and how to turn them into wine, but now it is time to move on! Keep me in your travel thoughts!

Posted by NikkiLucas 21:19 Comments (0)

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