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Des's N Z Wanderings...........

Hi!
Welcome to a summary of my wanderings. I will attempt to keep this up to date each day or two for all of you to read. Please feel free to leave a comment or two for me.

Diary Entries

Wednesday, 31 January 2007

Location: Invercargill, New Zealand

This morning reality settled in Overcast and showery. Last drive around Riverton and on my way. Stopped at makarewa to catch up with Mike Booth (ex SKC). Drive around invercargill and then to visit Sonny and Leslie Broad. They are in great health. Caught up with all family news and a good look around their house etc .It was great. Then on to Maree and John's. Showed them all the photos etc John being an ex SKC was very interested in them.
Tomorrow will explore Invercargill then on to Gore.

Tuesday, 30 January 2007

Location: Riverton, New Zealand

It is a beautiful day here at Riverton.
I am really enjoyiong being here and looking at the changes and also surprised by things that have not changed. I have spent my night at Riverton Camping ground and intended only spending one night here but will probably extend by another to fit every thing in. Will lodge photos when i can.
Riverton.... the rocks are is beautiful water breaking over the rocks and the breeze as i remember it.

There are some new modern design cribs but they do not look out of place with the old ones.
It is a pity the weather is not warmer because the veiws alone would attract the visitors...There is no ATM machines here so O/S visitors are at a disadvantage well and truely.

I have looked up some people i wanted to.. in smalll place like this
you would think people would know things. I visited Wayne Muntz last evening and when i mentioned some people i wanted to visit he thought they were dead... in fact they were alive and well and i have visited them. They are in their 80's but it was a delight to visit them.. Bill and Margaret Hewitson
Have been up all the streets that i remember here to pick out where people live I am doing this at what was the old post office and looking over the esturay towards Waipango. It is a great veiw.

I could not live here but it is great to visit....

Shopping area has diminished, but it is still suitable for the area. Have purchased a crayfish for $25.00 and will cook it tonight. also have some blue cod to cook.

Must go and investigate Riverton more.

Have decided to spent tonight here as well just too much to fit in.

weather very good. Went to Colac bay. There is a lot of land been sold...but no building has been started..Asian Investors were main purchasers..so there is some doubt if development will occur in the near future.
It was nice just sitting and watching the shore line.

Cooked the crayfish first time i have done this it was ummy esp with a nelson Sav Blanc. I had it at 10 pm overlooking the bay...
tomorrow Invercargill.

Friday, 26 January 2007

Location: Oamaru, New Zealand

Awoke at 6am in the lovely Wanaka area. Hills in the back ground lake in front...very ideallic. I am enjoying my breakfasts by the van. There is so much fresh fruit, fresh farm eggs and fresh raspberry jam.
Whilst here i caught up with Barbara O'Shaunessy who i had not seen since 1971 when i attended her wedding in the Kew Hospital Chapel. (she had to remind me of that). Here ex husband used to work with David and Chris in Invercargill. Went and visited her at work in the fighter pilots museum. Then off to Oamaru. First stop "Sheirk" country ---Tarras.. My first visit here. Hill Country good to look at. Got a sheirk postcard. Through the delightful Lindis Pass area. Passed streams and only 1 one way bridge. Stopped at Lake Benmore and the power station;also Avimore and waitaki stations. The camping grounds along here very popular with boaties.
I stopped in a small town called Kurow. I wanted to look at a Bric and Brac shop. The owner has used all the vacant shops in the town (3) to store his items because he did not want the town to be a town of empty shops. It would take too long to sort through every thing but i enjoyed what i did look at.
Today was the shortest distance to travel so have had a number of stops to take in the country side. Finally Oamaru. It has definitely changed in 40 years.
In my observation it does not look as posporous as it did in the past. Even though i say that there is a number of housing estates being developed. From Benmore onwads there is signs indicating the development of lifestyle estates.. from what was farmland.
Tomorrow i intend to catch up on the missing days

Thursday, 25 January 2007

Location: Greymouth/Wanaka, New Zealand

This by far has been my best day for the SI. My first stop was at Monteirhs Brewery..too early for a tour so tasted the beers had a look around and left to walk around Greymouth. Greymouth it is a quaint little town even has "The Warehouse". I purchased a tape of NZ songs both maori and english $4.95. Cannot get radio reception here. Mobile Phone reception is also non existent
On the road again..... Have been through rain ,fog and sun again. It is great to be on roads that are reasonably flat, only the occassional big climb. The van does not enjoy them. Hokitika was a nice little place. Has a great Jade factory.Once again the local food place is owned by an asian family.I tried one of their "whitebait patties" It was very nice..done like an omelette.Then on to the southern alps area. I had forgotten what is was like to drive through the forest lined roads - great flora esp ferns. Went and visited the glaciers. It was interesting to note the pattern of change in them over 300 years. They have very interestng information boards on site. They have shrunk, but it was my first sighting of them and i am most impressed. I cannot understand why i did not visit them when i lived here. I took my time through this area as there was so much to see. Livestock everywhere - sheep, cows, cattle, Alpachas and deer farms. Pastures differ from those i seen in the NI, but stock looked very healthy. To see snow capped mountains as you drive along was a great experience. Lake Hawea area was spectacular to drive through. I nearly stopped here but Wanaka was only 5 mins away. Finally arrived at wanaka for the night. I always stop at the first camping ground i see. facillities ok. Wanaka lovely to drive around. It is not as developed as i expected..that may be still to come. Enjoyed walking around the village. Had a Lamb Roast $25.00 for roast lamb and roat potatoes and pumpkin. Tried the local ale. Enjoyed it

Thursday, 25 January 2007

Location: New Zealand

Good Morning from Greymouth
I have been unable to keep this up to date due to lack of access. On the road points of connection have been few and far between. When I have found one there is a que for it. It has taken me 15mins to get signed on for this.
The trip going very well. The "surprise" was not a surprise. Donna rang my work and was told i was in NZ...great..
I am now travelling in the camper van and arrived in Greymouth last evening.

Since last entry have continued the wine tour and been to Kevins for Donna B'day. It was a nice evening. Went to Nelson Sunday and spent Monday in the Blenheim (see updates when i do themj
Stephen returned to Sydney on Tuesday. I travelled from nelson to Bills Wests in CHCH area. Spent evening with him ,Barbara and Phill.
The van has a dislike for windy conditions and drinks fuel like it is water, but cthe conditions are partly to blame.
I am enjoying the scenery very much I am covering routes i have not been to before.
I must travl on and will try to update as soon as i can

Wednesday, 17 January 2007

Location: Turangi, New Zealand

B/F at Turangi bakery, there pastry items are delightful. What a way to start the dat...sausage roll. The weather once again defeated the veiws we wanted to day. we travelled to the national parks, Tongariro...Rangataua. Travelled to the Turoa skifields to see Ruapehu, but cloud mist defeated us..stopped atOhakune Village. Had a good look around..coffee and Ginger crunch. Then on our way back to taupo and then on to Napier. Uneventfull trip. variety of pastuerland and forrest areas, methodically being wooded and regrowthed. Arrived at Napier in time to visit two wineries. At the second one we met a young lady from South Aust..Kangaroo Island.. It was the Crab farm Vinery. The land it is built on arose from then sea in the Earthquake of 1936. Hamish the owner joined so we sat and enjoyed his merlot and the Piste. We arranged to meet up with the lady and her partner later that evening. We ate the the "thirsty Whale" which is situated in the redeveloped Port Area. Thursday to Sunday it is a night club other times a pub. Great meal. Stephen has finally had a mussel pot. Late night.. glad to get to bed

Tuesday, 16 January 2007

Location: Matangi, New Zealand

Good Morning Matangi. B/F with I and M and guests. It was a bit sad to leave. It would have been good to spend another day here and have a good look around the area, but must be on our way towards Taupo.Travelled through great country side, through Karapiro, Tirau then on to Rotorua. I was dissapointed in Rotorua, drove aound lakeside... very commercial..just could not get into it. Spent time at Rainbow Springs where there is a NZ display, Trout, birds Floar, Fauna and a KIWI. The weather was against us taking the Gondola to have a veiw of the area. One our way out we called through Whakarewarawa village...this was a dissapointment..tourism phillosophy has dictated too much for my liking. Geothermal activity seems to be lessening.. Again left dissapointed. Then off to Taupo. Had a good look around the town. Next stop was Turangi. Stayed at a lodge close to the waikato river. Dined out at a local establishment. I think we overstayed our time. Seems they like to close at 9. We like to eat late, but they were nice about it. another Day completed.

Monday, 15 January 2007

Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Monday
Meet up with Stephen at Ace Rentals, so off we go. The travel plan has once again changed. Travelled down to Papakura abd turned off to got to KawaKawa Bay. On this road we 'discovered" Cleveton Oysters. Stopped. Watched the oysters being opened and had one straight from the shell...great. Purchased Jumbo oysters.. great tasting. Continued on to Phil's. Had not seen him since 1994. Enjoyed Tea and Toast with him and his partner. Talked, etc. He has a great veiw of the bay from his batch. The batch dates back to the days of the Kauri loggers. Set in beautiful
NZ bushland with weka running around the undergrowth. Sadly we had to leave. Phil suggested the coastal road. This was agreat choice the scenery was great. Stopped at NZ greatest fish and chip shop, Kaiaua. Stephen ordered a flounder...they battered a whole flounder. The lemon fish was great. even had battered oysters. Further around the coaste we passed another oyster farm. We were wondering why certain area of the coast line was not built on...protected land. Have passed through Whakatiwai, Kaiaua, Miranda, Waitakaruru. From here inland through
Mangatarata, orehape Kaihere, Patetonga down to Morrinsville. Then through to Matangi. At the last minute decided to stop at Imelda and Mark's house. Ihad just got out of the car and heard a voice "Hi Des" It was Mark and I have only met him on two occasions. When imelda arrived home she was not at all surprised that i was in NZ. What well developed property they have. Visited the family... horse. cattle, sheep and the dogs. Imelda had fellow horse friends visiting so it was arranged for us to stay at Dunfarmin, a B&B just down the road. Great meal that evening. Prior to it Imelda took us into Cambridge and showed us Zaabel house. The land on this stage of the journey is very rich in pasture and the farming seems to be great. Glad we did a surprised visit.

Sunday, 14 January 2007

Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Awake early......
it would be nice to be able to sleep in for a change.
Very overcast at this stage of the dat Rain threatened.
Rebecca picked me up and way we went. Firstly to Mt Eden lookout for a 360 degree look at Auckland. The cloudyness did not help but it was well worth the trip. I was last in Auckland in 1970 and can not remember much about it.
We went to the Mt Eden shopping strip a bit like King William Rd Hyde Park but only eating places open on Sunday. Had a delightful breakfast with Reb. The bread made on the premises was great. There was a shop here that just sold cook book. Realloy enjoyed looking through it. Looked at a wine shop..wow what agreat selection. Weather has now changed it is going to be a warm day.
Reb then drove to Mission Bay and St Helliers; coffee and beach walk. Have now seen Mt Eden Park, Ellerslie race course and Grey Lynn track. Just not enough time to do every thing, but saw what i wanted. Doing this in an internet cafe. Like a mini UN. I have my laptop but there are people waiting in a que to get to a computer. o be amoung so many nationalities it makes the world seem a small place.
Contacted an old school mate today. It was as if I had met him only yesterday. Had not spoken to him since 1964.

Saturday, 13 January 2007

Location: Auckland, New Zealand

D Day finally arrived.
Flight over great. Good movie "The Queen" see it if you can. Five minutes out of Auckland the rain started. Rain on landing.
Auckland Intl airport not much. Cleared customs in 15 mins. Only food McD's. Took Back packers bus to hostel. Accomodation basic but that is all i need. Queen St 5 mins away. Nice little chinese rest. nearby. It was great to feel the rain but i got very wet.

Friday, 12 January 2007

Location: Adelaide, Australia

D _ Day -1 Can now begin packing for tomorrow....hooray

Thursday, 11 January 2007

Location: Adelaide, Australia

D Day -2. Still have not started packing..... will do soon.
Everything seems to be going on schedule, but as usual i will forget important things.... but hell who cares as lond as i have pp and money.

Saturday, 06 January 2007

Location: Adelaide, Australia

Have just opened this account up to log my wanderings. It seems to be the "in thing" to do.


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Recent Messages

From Jo
Just got back from New York myself, sounds like you had a great time back home again! I'll be doing the same in about 6 months! See you soon
Response: Yes it is great
From Bex
Where are the daily updates???
Response: Yes i know...have you tried to compete with the young travellers for internet cafe times????
From Rebecca
Glad you to see you joined the planetranger family! haha
Response: Thank You...glad someone is reading my page