We made it all the way to the bottom of Aotearoa!
Our southest gig was on Rakiura/Stewart Island, which was awesome! We got to check out Ulva Island and enjoyed a few night with South Sea Hotel and a Sunday gig with all the locals, a reaaal treat!
Once back from the island, we headed to Invercargill and then to Queenstown where we had a fun and busy week of gigs and hanging out with rad people, then back down to Te Anau for a gig at Redcliff Cafe- such a gem of a spot with SUCH good kai… Seriously…
We had a bit of time from here to work on our album and check out the Milford Sounds, and we were so lucky to have met the kindest souls in Dunedin at a previous gig who let us crash at their holiday home here, so we had a fire to enjoy and keep us warm as lil mittens!
We drove out to Milford Sounds through the snowy mountains (ataaaaaaahua!) and through the big ol’ tunnel to the sounds! All was going well until we were heading back up to the tunnel on our way home, through the tunnel we heard something burst under my seat… it was scary! We had no idea what it was, and I was worried the car might blow up while we were in the tunnel and the whole mountain crumble on us and everyone else driving through with us… A little over the top, yes, but it was bloody scary.
We pulled over as soon as we were out and all the other cars drove on by.
The engine was steaming like maddddd so, she had over heated bit time, so between the snowy mountains we waited for Jamba to cool down. It took a while and we were freezing as one would be between snowy mountains. We heard a few earthquake sounding sounds and realised they were tiny little avalanches happening at the top of some of the mountains, no way near close enough to be worried, but the sound was something else.
Eventually, we started our van back up and rode down the mountain. About 20 mins later (eyes glued to the thermostat) we saw the heat level reach the top again and knew we needed to pull over. We were going to stop at the next open spot, driving down the mountain when everything shut off. Charles carefully steered us down the road, hand on the handbrake to a spot between trees where we waited again to let Jamba cool down. A little Robin joined us.
Jamba didn’t start up again nor was she showing any signs of starting, so I flagged down a car and they drove me to the nearest pay phone (no wifi in Milford Sounds FYI). AA and a tow truck were on there was, and the kind couple dropped me back to Charles to wait an hour for them to reach us.
When they did, the guy was quite surprised that it wasn’t just needing a jump start (as if we would have called a tow truck for a simple jump start!). He knew straight away this was a big problem, and an expensive one, let alone the tow out…
$7500 was too much for us to spend to fix her engine up, so we found a plan B, which turned into a plan C fairly fast.
We are now in Invercargill, where we will remain until Jamba is ready to roll.
Plans have changed and things have come up that have really made us question if this is what we should be doing, this pretty insecure, unstable lifestyle we’ve chosen, at least for now… And the answer is pretty simple for us. We are right where we are meant to be! Bumps in the road and all, we are convinced about this.
And we’re delighted to be learning some rad things as we go! We’re working with the mechanic to sort the van out, we’re staying with a super loving and kind whanau who feels a bit like home to us, and we’re heading home so very soon.
We chose this on-the-road, music full time lifestyle, and it’s so different, and so good, for us! We just miss family a bit too much right now haha but in a couple of weeks we’ll be home… for a lil while 😉