May 8, 2018 - I was driving, driving, driving and I...
Greetings loved ones!! Currently sitting in bed in my motel room in Te Anau in New Zealands stunning south island about 120km between Milford Sound and Queenstown. Its 6am, the sun is just starting to come up and its a crisp 9degrees. 9 degrees. Single figures. Never did i ever think i would be so excited to post that theres a chill in the air! Honestly after a week of 35+ weather i was so glad to land in NZ to an fresh Irish autumn day. It is hoodie and cozy socks weather and i am in my element!! Even though its cold, the sun is still...Jump to full entry
Apr 13, 2018 - Back to where it almost began on the South Island
Today we left a chilly Haast after breakfast and off to the Glacier region. No coffee availability in Haast so we were hopeful for a decent coffee somewhere in the little towns dotted along our way. No coffee in first two towns. We came over one of the many single lane bridges throughout this country to a banner/flag billowing in the breeze with the word cafe on it and a large timber house in the distance.... literally in the middle of nowhere. We decided to bite the bullet and go on in. It was a salmon farm, gift shop and served breakfast,...Jump to full entry
Apr 13, 2018 - The Circle complete
Maggie’s Kitchen in city centre Greymouth provided this mornings coffee. It came with some friendly banter from a Kiwi man who’s lived in Benalla in his past. From here we ventured to Shanty Town where DOG our friendly search and rescue Border Collie team mascot was welcomed most warmly. In fact it is believed he will appear on their Facebook page as the steam train driver was quite enamoured with him and took several photos. It was a smaller version of Sovereign Hill in many ways. With gorgeous blue skies we took on Arthur’s Pass again...Jump to full entry
Apr 12, 2018 - West Coast Dreaming.....
Breakfast at Bailiez cafe and bar with a nice coffee -something we’ve struggled to find at times. A quick visit to the souvenir shop before heading off in the drizzling depressing rain. The lake at Te Anau had again disappeared into a mist and cloud. We headed off for Wanaka for lunch. There were many snow capped mountains along our way with more snow falling over night. Mysteriously you see one mountain fully covered in snow but the ones on either side just have a dusting . Such beautiful sights but not picked up on the camera or phone as...Jump to full entry
Apr 11, 2018 - Milford Sound
After the doubt of yesterday due to he inclement weather and snow, today dawned a little overcast but the rain from yesterday seemed to have dissipated somewhat different the roads were opened. We dined for breakfast in the Hotel and won’t bother tomorrow as it was average to say the least.. the tour company picked us up at 10.00 am and we headed off shortly after. There were several stops along the way including Mirror Lakes, Knob Flat and a couple of photo ops. The sky continued to be overcast but patchy in cloud cover at times. Our bus...Jump to full entry
Apr 9, 2018 - South and Colder
A chilly start to the day....... headed south ( I think) to Bluff which is referred to the southerly most point of mainland NZ but apparently Slope Point is actually. Where’s Slope Point you ask? Pretty much in the middle of nowhere making Bluff the most visited most southerly Point. Stunning to say the least. The drive out takes you through possibly the ugliest part of NZ we’ve seen but it was worth it. Bluff looks like a town built for blue oysters and large shipping container ships. It is in some ways dirty and poor looking. The scenery...Jump to full entry
Apr 9, 2018 - Going South.....
We headed off to the Dunedin Cadbury Factory this morning in bitterly cold overcast weather. There was a sneaky cutting icy wind to add to the cold weather. The chocolate factory was great. It actually closed production a few weeks ago but the tour must go on. We ventured halfway up the very high silo where they dropped a tonne of liquid chocolate. I learnt that the chocolate changes for each country .... there is more sugar in Indian chocolate, less cocoa butter in Australia than NZ due to the meltability factor. there were plenty of...Jump to full entry
Apr 8, 2018 - On the road again
Breakfast at Black and White cafe with a smashed avo bagel and a yummy coffee was a great start before the sad part of our day - saying goodbye to our AVSEC ring ins..... beautiful funny ladies. Hopped in our cars Dunedin bound.... lunch time saw us arrive in Oamaru and on the advice of Mel ( another AVSEC girl) we headed down to the harbour area to the historic precinct. There was brewery where we had lunch... I had homemade tomato soup and a ginger beer made at the brewery. Not too bad a drop. A wander around the streets of this area...Jump to full entry
Apr 7, 2018 - Saturday - Closing Ceremony Day ....
Up early to catch the Tourist Tram ... hop on and hop off. Catherine, Mae, Fay & I needed to get our tourist hat on early as we had things to do in the afternoon. Took the tram around the whole circuit once to hear the story of Christchurch. The two earthquakes truly changed the city sadly in the loss of lives but for the better in every other aspect. Hopped off and walked to the cardboard church. cold calls oldest and most well known Anglican Church - Christ church was probably the face of the earthquake after the sadness of the loss of...Jump to full entry
Apr 6, 2018 - Friday - Last day of Netball.....
Headed off to the courts walking our way through the city that is constantly under construction .... a diversion or two guided by the Cone men for road crossing took us 20 minutes and we beat the bus ladies. Big day as there were 3 games to be played. No clue on how we went but I know that there was definitely laughter and more laughter. Took the bus home as we were heading out to Three Cows a lovely restaurant up the road for our Team dinner. Food was excellent Nd the company even better. Our AVSEC Flyers recruits ( AVSEC is aviation...Jump to full entry
Apr 5, 2018 - Rest Day
Rest Day Breakfast downstairs started our morning off on the right foot. From there we ventured down to the Quake Centre and learned more about the devastation and the resilience of the Christchurchian people . A few tears were shed listening to the stories of those who were there. Discovered that NZ has had at least 10 earthquakes of minimal size in past 24 hours. A stroll through the streets of Christchurch took us to the Christ College of music which is next to the Canterbury Museum and the Botanical Gardens . From here we caught the...Jump to full entry
Apr 4, 2018 - Netball Day 2
Caught the bus to the courts today ready for our two games and the girls umpiring... Game one was against an A grade team - a local Christchurch team. They were new to GO and they told us they only trained once a week for Golden Oldies on top of their usual training. I wonder when we will consider training for Golden Oldies....... so obviously we were smashed but they were nice ladies. Game Two was a game against Canberra Cavalry ( who have combined with the Fijian girls (who were short due to cyclones and flooding). It was an interesting...Jump to full entry