leaving motorhome and middle earth

April 10, 2009

April 4th – April 11th


Lonely Planet wrote about Kerosene Creek where you can sit in a natural hot spring. So we found it and we did. Everyone with creaking knees should have this facility.

Then on to Rotorua and Te Puia where steam shot out of the ground all over the place, mud bubbled and schlooped, making concentric circles on surfaces as grey and wrinkled as an elephant’s and a geyser exploded into action every hour creating vibrant and gaudy colours on the rocks around it.


The Maori Haka was really entertaining, I’m planning to give an Inset on facial expressions and body language on our return. I may mention tongues.

We spent the night in a park where the tent sites have underground heating from the thermal springs! Smelt odd though and the noises were flatulent to say the least.

Headed for the Coromandel Peninsula – beautiful, winding drive. Stopped at two stunning beaches – sea, surf, sun, solitude. Hahei Beach was perfect – small, quiet, excellent waves, bay dotted with small islands and rocks and best of all, no sand flies!

Apparently, the first rule of Frisbee Club is NEVER LOOK AWAY. After I narrowly avoided decapitation we settled into a very satisfying game while waiting for the sunset. It didn’t disappoint. Yellow, pink and grey clouds, fleeting moments of wow. So much so that we returned for a starry, starry night. Clouds made the stars slightly hazy rather than their usual extravagant selves but the moon was bathed in a golden halo and silvered the waves. And Eddie saw a shooting star!

Cathedral Cove is a much photographed beach with massive limestone rocks – the waves have created caves and interesting shapes. We were simply forced to stay there for a while in the sunshine, gazing on this natural beauty, then we drove round the peninsula admiring even more coastal views. Does this ever get boring? No.

cathedral cove


Handed the motor home over with real regret – we not only survived, we loved it. Auckland was full of people and cars…. and people and cars…and even more people and cars! We managed to miss seeing Sylar from Heroes at a Charity premiere of Star Trek but we walked on the same red carpet as he had done just 5 minutes previously.

We saw on the news that it was snowing on the south island….and it hailed as we were out…really, big hailstones. Today we went to Devenport – a short ferry ride across the harbour and very pretty. We sat in one of the many café bars, pretending we lived there and had a boat.

We saw KILLERS at the MEN, sorry the Vector Arena. They were good. They finished their set with ‘These things that we have done‘! (one for you Paul R.!!) and then their encore with ‘When we were young’ which was our Everest song (‘Can we climb the mountain, I don’t know‘…). The following day we were returning from a visit to penguins and stingrays, our bus got stuck briefly in rush hour traffic, we looked to our right and who should be ever so slowly passing us ….KILLERS…going to the airport ….they thanked us for going to see them, gave us their e mail details and asked us to pop in to see them in Las Vegas….no, they didn’t… but they would have if they’d just looked to their left.

Off to Fiji Saturday…not sure what to expect – it‘s warm but wet at the moment!


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