Moving To New Zealand, Nov 2005
As of Nov 11, 2005 we are off to New Zealand. For how long, who knows?
Come visit us while we are there, we like company.
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Week 1: We spent the first 4 days in Auckland acclimating and getting our errands done. We then headed down the east coast of the North Island. First stop was Mt. Maunganui, where we enjoyed the great beach and Hot Saltwater Pools. Next stop was Gisborne, where Capt. Cook first landed in NZ. Here Zane and his parents created this beach fort. Presently we are enjoying our stay in Napier, the Art Deco City. The architecture is indeed very nice, and the waterfront is really great as well. We have yet to check out any of the local wineries.
Week 2: We continued to move south, stopping a night in Martinborough, a lovely little wine village. Then it was on to Wellington, the capital. In our experience the weather there is always horrible. We spent a good afternoon at Te Papa, the national museum. We left on the ferry, crossing the Cook Strait to the South Island. The ride was not too rough and quite nice. Next stop was Blenheim, in the heart of the Marlborough wine region. Here our housing search shifted into high gear. Zane enjoyed the outdoor bath at St. Leonard's farm stay.
Week 3: We examined MANY houses, looking for that perfect "character" house (privacy, room for sheep). We did not find it, but did find the beach community of Rarangi, about 1/2-way between Blenheim and Picton. We visited the school, talked with some residents, and got a good feeling about it. We put in an offer on a house there - it was accepted! Glenn is happy - right across the street from the Golf Course. If all goes to plan we will be in before Christmas. Plenty of room for guests -make your travel plans now. Here's the beach there on a blustery day.
Week 4: On to the Nelson area, which was very enjoyable now that the house hunt was over. We visited the Nelson Market and the Motueka A & P Show, which is similar to a county fair back in the USA. We explored the local beaches where Zane caught about 50 waves on his boogie board. The weather was mostly fine with one morning of "thundery heavy falls" which was quite entertaining. Here Zane feeds the tame eels at the Jester Cafe.
Although we did not make it out to Abel Tasman National Park, we did visit a few of the lesser-known spots around the area. Here is the north fork of the Riwaka River just below the spot it emerges from the ground in the "Riwaka Resurgence" It is quite beautiful as you can see, and the deeper pools of water are an impossible color blue.
Week 6: We are now settled at our place in Rarangi. Here is a view looking out the living room, over the garden towards Cook Strait. Is that water blue or what? The gardens are amazing, with a huge variety of plants, most of which we do not recognize. We are hoping to be able to keep most of it alive.
Facing East, we have had some great sun rises - for those of us awake at that hour!
Zane has begun several projects, including a remodel of the garden shed into his play house. Here he tests out his new sand sled on the beach. It is good for hauling driftwood and interesting beach rocks.