recommended Bay of Islands region severalrnhours north of Auckland, I headedrnsouth along the main Highway 1,rnthrough Hamilton and on to the largestrnlake in New Zealand and the center ofrnNorth Island, Lake Taupo. On the way Irnobserved what was to be confirmedrneverywhere I went in the country, thatrnKiwis are consummate stock raisersrnand farmers. Like their ancestors fromrnBritain, they keep their fence rows, paddocks,rnand farmhouse yards tidy andrntrim. This is true of farms far from townsrnso there is no question of gentrihcationrnby city wage earners. These are workingrnfarms.rnApproaching Taupo, I passed thernWairakai Geothermal Project, which hasrntapped the clouds of steam from undergroundrnshafts, and which drives electricrngenerators. I also stopped off at HukarnFalls, and from the footbridge over thernWaikato River felt its booming power.rnThe next morning I was snapped to consciousnessrnby the “varooom” of a new redrnFerrari that had parked in the courtyardrnof the motel. A teenaged boy and hisrngirlfriend off for an early start over therncurvy mountain roads.rnNot making connections with a flyfishingrnguide, I engaged a charter boatrnfor some trolling after rainbows. Thisrnwould not normally have been myrnchoice of fishing, but the scenery wasrngreat, and my guide, Gus Te Moana, thernonly Maori among the many guides onrnthe lake, was the perfect companion.rnAfter either retirement from one job inrnindustry, or downsizing (I never asked),rnhe had started his own charter boat service.rnIn his late 50’s or early 60’s, deeplyrntanned and silver headed, he explainedrnthe three most common kinds of trollingrnon the lake: harling, lead-lining, andrndown-rigging. In England, harling isrntrailing a fly behind a boat for salmonrnwhile it’s being rowed back and forth betweenrnriver banks, but as near as I couldrngather, what it meant on Taupo is surfacerntrolling with a fly tied about a footrnfrom the back lure. In lead-lining, thernlure is tied to from six to 12 feet of nylonrnline, which is in turn tied to lead line,rnwhose weight takes it down perhaps 25rnfeet.rnWe would use the down-riggingrnmethod. After we reached the bestrnfishing grounds, Gus tied lures on therntwo lines, then further down, attachedrnround, ten-pound lead weights whichrnwere dropped to 113 feet, carefully measuredrnout by small electric winches that Irnnoticed had been made in Ganada. Thernrods were then laid out almost horizontalrnin outrigger fashion. The depth was determinedrnby water temperature, and duringrnthese warm days, the rainbows werernmost comfortable quite deep. We gotrncomfortable ourselves and, as fishermenrnare wont to do, sat back in our fishingrnchairs and talked about worldly matters,rnall this with Mt. Ruapehu, the tallestrnmountain on North Island (an active volcano)rnin the background.rnI brought up the New Zealand Firstrnpolitical party, which is headed by WinstonrnPeters, a Maori. I didn’t know anythingrnabout him and merely remarkedrnthat I had been told he was quite a handsomernman, whereupon Gus broke out inrna long laughing spell, gasping, “Yes, yes,rna very handsome man,” I think Gusrnmeant something much more than this,rnbut I didn’t pursue the matter. A littlernlater we were enjoying high talk aboutrnthe advantages of traveling to otherrnplaces, noting the different ways peoplernsolve the problems of living and Gusrnsaid, “Yes, yes, seeing other members ofrnthe family.” About that time, world talkrnwas stopped in its tracks as a six-poundrnrainbow hit the lure and the focus of myrnattention was much reduced.rnI gave my trout to the owner of thernmotel and the next morning drove southrnalong Highway 5 to Napier. Luckily Irnhad filled up the car with gas before I leftrnbecause the drive was through sparselyrninhabited mountainous terrain. Thernroad was through the Waipunga Riverrnvalley and periodically the road crossedrnthe river itself. Besides the WaipungarnFalls, the river itself screams “Trout!”rnSome say the attraction of Napier isrnthe architecture in the Art Deco stylernthat was introduced following the earthquakernof 1931 that devastated the town,rnbut for me it was the wine region ofrnHawke Bay. The top three wine regionsrnin New Zealand are Henderson Valleyrn(northwest of Auckland), Hawke Bay onrnthe east coast of North Island, andrnMarlborough on the northeast of SouthrnIsland (which includes Blenheim).rnThese days New Zealanders are takingrntheir wine-making very seriously and arernjustifiably becoming world famous.rnWine-making took its first steps in thernearly and middle parts of the 19th century,rnbut the industry really took off in thern1960’s. While there are certainly goodrnreds, for example Corbans’ Merlot fromrnthe Madborough region, the Ghardonnaysrnand Sauvignon Blancs steal thernspotlight. Of the ten top-rated winesrnavailable in the United States as listedrnby Wine Spectator in 1994, nine werernwhites, almost all Chardonnays, four ofrnwhich came from Hawke Bay and fourrnfrom the Marlborough region. Usingrn1993 figures, which do not reflect thernvigorous growth of the last three years, ofrnthe four and a half million cases of winernproduced, three and a half million werernconsumed locally, and of the millionrnexported, only 19,000 eases (2 percent)rnmade it to the United States.rnThere is something gratifying aboutrndriving along roads bordered by vineyards,rnwhether in Italy, Yugoslavia,rnGhile, or the Republic of Georgia. Irnknow there have been interesting, certainlyrnpowerful, societies which did notrnhave vineyards, but I would not prefer tornlive in them. It’s one reason I becomernmore comfortable year after year as myrnown Missouri wine region continues torngrow and improve. One of the felicitiesrnfor the wine lover meandering aboutrnHawke Bay is to come serendipitouslyrnupon a vineyard and winery that producesrnsplendid wine which can be hadrnonly by coming there. This happened tornme while I was looking for a place to havernlunch south of Napier. I came uponrnGrab Farm Winery which also served arnploughman’s lunch. A pleasant youngrnwoman suggested the ’94 Ghardonnayrnwith my potato roasty topped withrnmounds of bacon and avocado. Thernwine was full-bodied, fruity, and reflectedrnits aging in French oak. The wineryrnwas only 16 years old. The land of thernvineyard had come into the family in thern19th century as a payment of debt. Thernowners discovered the “farm” was justrnmudflats and tidal water, covered withrncrabs. Then the 1931 earthquake raisedrnthe land above sea level. Toward the endrnof my lunch the young woman remarkedrnthat she was going to the Olympics inrnAtlanta this summer. I asked, “As a participant?”rn”No,” she replied, “I’m goingrnwith a group from New Zealand to tellrnthe people there about Jesus Ghrist.” Irntold her I thought Atlanta could surelyrnuse her. An hour later, feeling much relaxedrnand wanting to avoid taking a middayrnnap, I flung myself into Hawke Bay,rnbracing against the rough, cold surf ofrnthe South Pacific.rnThere’s lots of good fishing on NorthrnIsland, but South Island was beckoning.rnFrom windy Wellington, the capital, Irntook a light plane across Gook Strait forrnPicton. Likely the descriptive “windy”rnAUGUST 1996/37rnrnrn