Saturday, August 16, 2014

Trip to Tekapo and Mt Cook

Saturday, August 16, 2014
oldbearnews editor

        When you got the nose to the grindstone it is often easy to forget to lift and smell the roses.  So when Mamabear's Birthday came up and I had 3 hours of work time owing - we made a decision and (thankfully) it worked out for us all ok.
   We booked (and yes this is a treat) a Hotel room at the Peppers Hotel  (meaning we did not have to bring the usual breakfast food or extra bits and pieces we normally take with us when booking into a Motel). So came a Hot Friday - Mamabear more or less slept in for a bit while I got up and did my 'one hour' of work at work then came home early and we packed and tanked and left home just before lunch.  Driving down to Asburthon and seeing they had this nice small cosy café in the Arcade, we decided to stop there and have some light lunch there. Yumm!! We might as well start now with the 'no food preparation / cooking / dishes' weekend. From there it was via the usual route to Geraldine, (where we stretched our legs for a bit) and zipped past - or better through Fairlie!  The town has on the entrance a old red brick clay building that has 3 or four heavy tarps over the roof line - since the earthquakes - and - yup - they are still there, faded somewhat.  Wonder when they will finish the work there.   In any case we pushed on and came round the "Dog Corner" with the sign of 'historic place' (more on that later) to the usual uuuh's and ahhhh's! It is quite magic coming round that corner and seeing the flat-ish McKenzie country laid out and the snow (or glacier) topped Alps behind them AND seeing we had not a single cloud in the sky it was just a brilliant scene to behold.  Naturally the conversation returned to recent Austrian visitors and their enjoyment of the moment!! Soon enough we hit the big tourist metropolitan area of Lake Tekapo and found the Hotel and did what we had to do - check in. We did bring more then just a toothbrush!!  I most certainly brought with me my camera AND the (last time forgotten) and most important tripod. I will need that later for the night Photography.  Seeing it was still nice and sunny and warm we strolled some leisurely 15 minutes through the town and to the Church of the Good Shepherd - New Zealand’s most photographed church.  As you can see - there are now steps where there used to be just some haphazard gravel.  Naturally I took a pic. So did the bus load of Asian tourists.  Eventually got one with just Mamabear in the frame!!

Don't let the cloud fool you - by the time 6pm rolled round they had all gone. In any case - the usual caretakers / church guides had closed up shop for the day  and  all you could see is the outside.
 That did not stop me from re-shooting a earlier picture I took when the Austrians were with us  -->  recent key-hole surgery and tried to improve said photo. I knew what I had to do - get more distance from me to the door.  Dang - I left the Tri-pod at the hotel. The reason is that the cross is some 15 meters on the other side of the building and when you are so close to the door - it is either one or the other that is in focus - so 'Depth of Field' is very tricky to achieve - especially with the dark frame and bright light behind the cross.  This is a better image but still not perfect. One day I will do this right - might even try a different lens . . . . .
 A even rarer shot - a church with no people in it!!  Hmmm this reminds me of this joke about a Baptist minister - but - I digress.  In any case - I very patiently waited some 15 minutes before the last tourist just ducked out and away and had 20 seconds before the next person entered the view.   Whoopee   :)
While waiting - spotted this fellow.  The length we go to to take THE perfect picture.  I am not so stupid - oops keen as the water is glacier fed, and so, even with his waders on, would have been freezing cold.  Dunno what he was shooting - it is just a rock in the water.  Each to their own.   :)

Soon it was time to head back and dump the gear and get dolled up and visit the dining room.  A fantastic (no cooking for us ) meal had been had - with both of us choosing the lamb roast! Very unusual!! It is a place where you see more plate then food - but what we had was divine.  ( I should also say that I am on medical orders to loose 10 kg in next 12 months - and we had resolved that the work towards this goal will start after this weekend - thus leaving me free to enjoy whatever riches were on offer.) Having been fed and watered hmmm ok  wined   - we walked back to the room only to see the reflections = so out came the camera again and we snapped a few pic's.  From there we walked - yes walked again to the lake front and the Church to take some night time images. By this time it was pitch black dark - and yet there were at least two other photographers there as well as a normal bus-load of Asian tourists.  Nothing doing - I didn't set the gear up properly and sure ruined a few shots for the other image taker present.  Humble apologies.  The photos are to embarrassing to show here (although one has possibilities - you see the Southern Cross and the two pointers very clearly). Hmmmm maybe I can do a post shoot process??  I did shoot them in RAW mode as well as normal mode so maybe - will look at that when I get home.
Ah well - it is a learning curve, and as they say - the night is young - so we strolled back to our room and  . . .. . . .     
you have to use your imagination!!

 bear print

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