What is it about New Zealand landscape that is so awe inspiring and endearing?
I find myself driving in the car, gripping the wheel and trying not to veer into the ditch when the car comes towards me on the wrong bloody side of the road.
Yet I notice that while my knuckles are turning white my mouth is still turned up a permanent grin. Yeah, sure, I love being on the road again, but it is the thrill of the ever changing landscape behind my window that makes my heart sing. There is so much extraordinary beauty and every turn in the road brings a new surprise, a new view, vista or peysage.
The waterfalls pop out of nowhere and stately, old, lone trees stand majestically in the middle of the fields. Lacy green ferns cover whole sides. “Oh, look, the sweet little lambs on the green grass with the blue sky and puffy white clouds.” “Wow, look at that turquoise lake! “The sunset, the sunset, just look at those golden clouds over the white sand and black rocks.”
There is a perfect combination of raw nature with just the slightest touch of human hand. What I find most attractive is a never before seen succession of perfectly groomed green hedges reaching to the sky, dissecting pastures in perfect lines. (I soon learn they are planted densely to protect newborn lambs and calves from the strong winds).
I have to try really hard not to stop every few minutes to take a picture. When I can’t help myself, and do, I keep turning my iPhone photo mode on panorama to try to capture the whole glorious grandeur in front of my eyes, drunk from so much spectacular beauty.