For numerous reasons, but mostly time constraints, I’ve chosen not to follow through on our proposal to write a blog about ten of our favourite places from our 2010 journeys on the waterways of Britain. We’ve taken so long to just get up to date with the blog that I feel it’s time we made a commitment to write more regularly, and as much as possible in ‘real time’. - well, apart from a few snaps from our trip to Sydney on the return journey to New Zealand last November!
Our mini-break for my birthday at the end of September was lovely and relaxing; we were even blessed with so much sunshine that I got sunburnt. Most people’s daily lives these days have been taken over by technology, ours included, so it was wonderful to have a couple of days where we didn’t have access to the internet or mobile phones.
Mahia peninsula is just less than an hour's drive from Gisborne, and is one of my most favourite places. Check out these photos and you'll see why ...
Our picnic table on Taylors Beach, a 2 minute walk from where we were staying
A collage of cabbage trees
An abundance of wildlife - turkeys and goats check us out ...
Packing up the picnic and leaving the beach bach (short for the 'bachelor pad' of old, New Zealanders are renowned for their bach's at the beach)
Although it's fabulous to escape the 21st century occasionally, I’ve recently ordered one of the new, 6” Kindles from Amazon for a xmas present to myself. I’m having it delivered to my parents address in Worcester, and won't get to play with it until we come in March 2012. I love my books and have a bookcase full – though not as full as it used to be as I’ve recently sorted through and am selling or giving some away. Barry has yet to make a start on his vast collection! The Kindle I’ve bought holds up to 1,500 books, which I thought sounds as many as I would ever need.
On Sunday, Barry gave away his New Zealand boat, ‘The Final Cut’, which hasn’t seen water (apart from rain) since I met him almost six years ago! It was going to be sold when we moved here in 2008, until we realised that there was so much parking space at the house we bought together, that it could come with us - so it’s been sitting at the bottom of the garden ever since. Now it’s in new hands, they may even find the time to do it up and get it back into the water – just the beginning of us downsizing our ‘stuff’ in preparation for returning to UK around February 2013.
We were sad to see that Paul and Elaine didn’t achieve the price they were hoping for at their house auction recently, and hope that it’s just a minor glitch in their dream. How frustrating to have sold your house once and now look likely to have to sell it for a lot less than someone was willing to pay for it just a few months ago. Who knows what the market will be like in New Zealand this time next year, but there’s no point dwelling on ‘what might be’, “what you give energy to grows and expands" is one of my Life Coaching mantras, so I’m putting it out there that our home will sell for a good price towards the end of 2012 so we can return to the cut.
The All Blacks remain in the Rugby World Cup, thank goodness! At the end of the first half I was wondering if they were going to go the same way as Ireland and England! Barry and I are going to be at the Gisborne Food and Wine Festival on Sunday 23 October, and we'll be watching the final on the big screen in the open air. Fingers crossed for fine weather and the kiwi boys, though Barry's said all along that Australia are going to win, so it's maybe more likely to be an Australian/France final. We shall see …
Talking of Australia, here's a few shots from our few days with Peter, Barry's younger brother, last November:
New development Ceinwen, Peter's daughters' mother, is overseeing is in the foreground
Little and large
A very fascinating tour of the Opera House
Barry's green t-shirt faded into the background of the green cloth that the photographer used!
Meeting up with Paul, from 'Nb The Manly Ferry' for a drink in Manly