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Invercargill: most southerly city in the world

CIMG8914Was I glad to have done the big mileage yesterday? You bet!! A gale sprang up in the night, hailing from the south, and so strong was it, I grumpily got out of my sleeping bag at some unspeakable time in the morning to secure the guy ropes and pegs……….but thanked my lucky stars that I didn’t have to cycle 90km (57 miles) with this gale as a headwind.

I spent the morning doing a bit of relaxed sightseeing, drinking coffee and eating cake, until the scheduled meeting with the Deputy Mayor of Invercargill, Darren Ludlow, Manager of Radio Southland, outside the Town Hall. Within minutes the Town Council’s photographer was there, took the

Marie Teuwen, Darren Ludlow, Deputy Mayor and Jenny

Marie Teuwen, Darren Ludlow, Deputy Mayor and Jenny

the publicity shots……..and then it was time for a bit of lunch.

I am, indeed, very grateful to Marie Teuwen, President of Save the Children (Southland) for arranging the warm welcome, and to Cecily and John Mesman for offering to feed me and give me a bed for the night.

Cecily, in fact, took me to meet her son-in-law at the museum. Lindsay Hazley is Curator of the Tuetaras at the Southland Museum. Now you are all wondering what tuetaras are? Yes? Well don’t be dismayed if you don’t know, because they are a very rare native lizard in this part of the world. So

Cecily bwith son-in-law Lindsay, Curator of Tuetaras at Southland Museum

Cecily bwith son-in-law Lindsay, Curator of Tuetaras at Southland Museum

rare, in fact, that they have to be “curated” in order to secure their continued existence in this world. Lindsay has consorted with famous people in his field, and has also nurtured the existence of “Henry”, a 110 year old tuetara which has been noted to still have the ability to “wow the ladies” and perform……… Just imagine, Henry was born at the time of the death of Queen Victoria, and could feasibly see out two centuries on this planet.

Tomorrow, I will make my way down to Bluff, take the customary photos beneath the signposts pointing to the four corners of the world, then jump on a ferry to go to Stewart Island, the most southerly inhabited landmass this side of the southern hemisphere. At that point, I will truly have finished my journey.

Children of Syria Appeal:



Henry, 110 years old!

Henry, 110 years old!

Lindsay with David Bellamy

Lindsay with David Bellamy

The family of bears that will be sharing my bedroom tonight!

The family of bears that will be sharing my bedroom tonight!

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