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Where's Jonny? Care to dine with me? You would think that 11 years of daily food tasting for a living might put me off?......au contraire! Chomp away with me across 6 continents. Seduced like a bloodhound to the scent of good food, I anticipate the misty waft of steaming broths, the satisfying crunch of mudbugs and the vibrant aroma of freshly pulverised lemongrass. Buon appetito

Donuts, skiing and crustal movements

NEW ZEALAND | Monday, 16 July 2007 | Views [1679]

Homer and Bart unveil a huge donut to the town of Springfield

Homer and Bart unveil a huge donut to the town of Springfield

What do Homer Simpson, Skiing and crustal collisions have in common?

The answer is, they are all features of New Zealands South island.

"Hold on," you say, "surely Homert Simpson is a Yank?" Indeed he is, BUT we're in the Town of Springfield (one of 11 in the world) which is where Homer and his family live. Although there is no nuclear plant and the local sheep farmers are distinctly Kiwi the Hollywood marketing gurus have chosen this town of 300 people to promote their new movie.

On Sunday 15th July 2007 Bart and Homer will be rolling in on a special train to host events. Though this town is fairly non-descript as an entity its easy to see why they chose this place. Its flanked by the most majestic snow capped mountains, winding valleys and glacier fed rivers imaginable.

Known as the Southern Alps (or Snowy mountains Lord of the Rings fans) or (Maori name to be inserted) the boys in LA must have spilled their lattes when a picture of Springfield NZ flashed over their monitors.

Now I'm no Geologist but the landscapes and pure variation of the rocks is jaw dropping. When my eyes initially connected with these frosty formations I felt something move (and it wasn't just my spirulina based juice drink)

It was a Smeagol-like moment as he glanced upon the ring.

Nature was calling me in a profound way and I felt creative jolts shooting across my nervous system. I wanted to skate, ski, fish, hunt, photograph, draw and write poetry all at once. This land is far from ones of angular lines and golden arches. An unspoiled wilderness - a huge Kew gardens.

Skiing lessons at porters (ski resort) had me attaching chains to the wheels before ascending a terrain so steep that even the mountain goats suffered from vertigo. Once up it was time to look cool.......which we did in our new Colombia jackets but then ruined the image in front of the group when we admitted to the instructor that the only place we'd skiied was Milton Keynes indoor snow zone.

By lunchtime it Maria was taking "Apres-ski" to a new level. Chanels on head, Pinot Noir in hand and glancing at "Wallpaper" magazine you'd never have gussed just how reluctant a skiier she had been all morning.

The height gave ample opportunity to gaze upon the layered mountains like panetones dusted with icing sugar.

It transpires that our lunch-time panoramas were formed over 248 million years ago by gigantic upward crustal collisions. The process continues to slowly elevate these wonderful peaks like some collosal white, push-up bra.

Everyone we've met here has been unbelieveably friendly. Even the immigration staff who are paid to be rude couldn't have been more helpful and happy.

Unfortunately the drug sniffer dog was also happy to meet Maria.

She was let off when it was discovered that the loose Earl Grey tea in her hand luggage could not be smoked.

Despite the wealth of natural foodstuffs in New Zealand, finding good stuff to eat is a search and find mission. Lamb for example is surprisingly difficult to find on menus and its really expensive when you do. hats off then to Subway who at least make an attempt to promote the country's most famous produce with their lamb and mint sandwich.

Fried foods seem to predominate. Pies, burgers and fast food reign. Homer will not be disappointed. This brings me nicely back to tomorrows ceremony in Springfield.

At 12pm an "icon" is to be unveiled to the people by Homer and Bart. Yes you've guessed it, its a HUGE donut.

I pray that this pink beignet is appropriate only to the movie and not my gastranomic experiences to come.

Tags: Adventures

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