So in my head this blog title is cracking me (and probably only me) up because it's pronounced "why-hee key..."
Get it? HILARIOUS!
After Auckland City Limits, which was cool (and proved we are old, and still like sitting in the back of festivals, even internationally, and also proved teenagers are the worst everywhere, even if they do have charming accents), we headed to Waiheke Island. Though Auckland was a nice enough city, everyone, including and especially Aucklanders, told us how much they don't like Auckland and to GET OUT and see other stuff. So we did!
Waiheke is an island just north of Auckland, about a 30 min ferry ride away, filled with wineries and hippies and rich people and tourists. Apparently the hippies were there first and now just piss off the rich people with their old non-rich house boats. Ha.
We opted to do a winery tour via a hop-on-hop-off bus (they called it a "hopper"). The driver said we'd be doing well in the day to hit up 3 of the 8 wineries on the tour course. We ended up going to 6, and one of them twice. Classic.
The day was pretty amazing; highlights include:
- In classic Kanner form, we immediately missed all buses we were supposed to get on to the main town where Hopper picks up (unlike everyone else on our ferry, who apparently got the memo), but the driver of another unscheduled bus offered to take us because "hell, I don't have anything else to do." I am loving the locals.
- The first wine stop at Te Whau (fun fact, the "wh" is pronounced like an "f"..) on a more isolated point on the island. It was just beautiful; great wine, cool owner...but the owner maybe ruined tons of other wines for us by telling us that, unlike his winery, others who don't hand process the grapes often use weird shit like bulls blood (among other things) to hide the taste of tannins (which get crushed in by machinery when it's not hand processed), and that weird shit is never on the label. Great. But who am I kidding, I'll still drink all other wines.
- A winery called Stony Ridge had the most beautiful view and setup (and of course I've tried to upload a photo of this place 3 times but the blog must have something against it...). We then walked down to another winery close by that advertised "adventure" with wine and beer. This equaled archery and shooting, which to me (and probably most normal people) seems like an odd combo. You walk up the front path and a bunch of people are aiming their guns at you...laser guns, but no one makes the effort to tell you that at first. Good wine and beer, though!
- We chatted it up with a couple from New York, Lisa and Brian, and had a hilarious time with them closing out one cool little hidden winery, Obsidian. We all then made the excellent decision to hike over a few (gorgeous, picture-perfect set of) hills to another spot, also set to close until we convinced them to stay open just a bit more if we bought a bottle.
This is when the day starts to get a bit spotty but trust me, it was fun. Night ended when we hiked further to StonyRidge once again (we'd long missed our hopper at this point) to find that the previously family-friendly kid galore spot had turned into some kind of crazy after-hours hot-spot with beautiful people lounging around and dancing to a DJ. So clearly, we fit right in.
And by the end of the day, I felt like this: