|K: The next day we arranged to meet up with Willie and Katie in Petone on the way to Napier, so it was great that we managed to meet up plus we had a fantastic Italian lunch! Before we left the hostel I phoned ahead to book some suitable parental accomodation in Napier. Just as I got off the phone, after handing out my credit card details, the lady told me there would be a $10 key deposit - the place I had meant to book did not sound like a place that took key deposits. This slightly concerned me that I had made a bit of an error, especially when I checked the phone number and couldn't remember dialing it! Still, not to worry we had somewhere to stay in Napier booked from the Lonely Planet!
Needless to say when we arrived at my preferred accomodation choice they had, unfortunately, never heard of me and so we were off to find the place one above in the list. Unfortunately for my parents, although Ben was quite happy for the experience, this turned out to be a converted prison - complete with communal showers and slamming metallic doors! Whoops. I don't think it would have been too bad but my poor dad, from the hot car journey, appeared to develop heat stroke during the night and wasn't a very well chap the following day either and spent it in his cell while we went wine tasting. Although, mum didn't try much because she was poorly as well. It was turning out a bit like the last time my parents and I went on holiday together when my dad went a bit deaf from water in his ears and my mum got sun cream in her eyes and couldn't see for a while.
B: Napier was an interesting place. It was detroyed in an earthquake in 1931 then rebuilt in the style of the 30s, art deco. It is also the home of the Hawke's Bay wine industry. We had managed to arrive during the annual festival of food and wine and K and I signed oursleves up to a gastromic treat of seven courses of food with fine wines provided by Esk Valley, one of the finest producers in NZ. The food and wine were fabulous. Between each course the head winemaker, Gordon Russell, introduced the wines and described how they were made and whether they turned out as planned. We sampled some special wines never or no longer available to the public. After two aperitifs and at least a glass with each course, we wobbled home to the prison.
The next day we did the walking Art Deco tour around the town. After this we drove to Taupo for luch then on to Tauranga to meet up with the rest of the family.