2017 New Zealand travel blog

Stratford Glockenspiel

With Romeo and Juliet

Lovely Bud in Pukekura


October 11, 2017

Lots of rain and wind! Scullers out on the river. Not fun I am sure. Caught up on the Sonoma/Napa fire situation as we have tons of good WiFi.

The drive to New Plymouth ( the Texas of NZ because of all of the offshore oil rigs and gas) and Mt. Taranaki was a very blustery and windy drive through dairy land. The wind was probably the worst we have faced yet but at least we were not dangling off the side of a mountain. About the time we arrived in Stratford the sun and blue sky came upon us. Stratford claims NZ’s first glockenspiel which we got hear and watch go off at 1:00 We saw/heard a song from Romeo and Juliet. Not too long of a ride to New Plymouth, the only international deep water port in this part of NZ. Supposed to have a bubbling arts scene and lovely park AND tops the NI most sunshine list! Still very windy but went straight to Pukekura Park where we had lunch in the rig and then walked the park. There are dense native land walkways, very interesting tree collections ( a 2,000 year old Puriri tree), Rhododendron and azalea dells, fountain, waterfalls, broad sweeping lawns, formal flower beds and fresh water lakes and streams. Still windy with sporadic showers but warm and sunny otherwise. Lovely walk!

Went to the iSite ( In Puke Ariki “hill of Chiefs”) to find out how we could see Mt. Taranaki. Weather is terrible today and no tours but there is a possibility for tomorrow afternoon. Need to take the Egmont Road for about ½ hour and may get a sighting. Will be -1 degrees but driving should be fine. Lady also told us about a quite nice bistro called Table in The Nice Hotel. We walked there from the iSite and found them temporarily closed. Persistent because the menu looked great, Bob rang the doorbell. Fellow came out and took our reservation for tomorrow at 6:30! Guess we will be staying 2 nights in New Plymouth!

Arrived at Top 10 camp which is our most expensive and far from nicest yet. Oh well! Bob begged for more WiFi and got 500 mg. Few pictures tonight.

Fridge seal is falling off so things in the fridge are not so cool. Was expected as the earlier guy could not fix it properly. Not keeping more than one meal now. Tonight is the old standby spaghetti with spicy pork sausage, peppers, mushrooms etc. Having some 2014 St. Claire viognier at the moment.

So far we have very minor problems in Sonoma. If the wind picks up tonight it may be a different story. We hope the electricity comes on before Monday when our driver has to get the car out of our garage to pick us up. We’ll figure it out if not.

Will be glad to get back to Sonoma to help our friends. Sonoma is GREAT when it comes to helping those in need. After “this” it will only get better!

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