SO…. we had something all planned for our D date these days off but decided that because the weather was glorious and we fancied getting away again that we’d go CAMPING and continue with the C theme!!! Well this is a bit of a lie, I decided we’d go camping and spent a whole day nagging Joe until he agreed! A couple we live with had visited Akaroa a few days before so it came highly recommended and we decided to go there. Unfortunately Tilly the Toyota is still in the garage waiting for a few parts… luckily she came with a two man tent so we headed in the car to pick it up and off we went.
Well… off we nearly went because of course the car wouldn’t start! Joes pretty handy with the jump leads now and eventually we got going! We arrived at the garage to collect the stuff we needed including some beer supplies and then headed straight off…
One thing we’ve discovered about NZ is that wherever you drive the drive seems to be beautiful! And this one didn’t disappoint with stunning views along the way. Half way there and the car started over heating so we decided to stop to give the car a rest from the hills and get a drink. We stopped at a bar with a hilltop view and a pet sheep! Had a rest, a pint of beer and a gin and tonic and then headed off again. I spent alot of time petting and talking to the sheep but Joe refused to take a picture telling me that I’m a grown woman and its embarrassing!
Joe decided that the best way to deal with the over heating was to not turn the car on and roll down the hill!!! Thankfully we made it to the beautiful seaside town in one piece! Obviously our first point of call was the pub! We did walk around for a while to make sure we chose the best one… Joe even let me go in one shop and I spotted a fish wall hanging that I really liked. After a few pints Joe agreed that I was allowed to head back and pick up the fish wall hanging as long as he could wait in the pub! WINNING! While in the shop I also found a print of a cow wearing a swimming hat that I decided to buy it because it made me smile. Joe wasn’t as impressed with this and thought it was stupid, but its a bit late now and I’m sure it’ll bring a smile to both our faces when we’ve got it hanaging on our wall one day.
We went for a walk around the jetty and looked at some trips. We decided just to take the day to rest and chill out but they do loads of neat stuff here and I think we’ll definitely come back and swim with the wild dolphins which looks amazing, theres also a trip to see a large penguin colony which I also think would be ace. So after a quick wonder we needed to decide where to stay… we had two options one was a camp site in Akaroa but it was more of a holiday park type thing the benefit was that we could have a few drinks at the bar and walk back. The other option was a campsite I’d spotted on my new app (campermate) I’m still getting used to the app but it shows you every campsite in NZ and their facilities and is colour coded depending on the price which is handy. There are a lot of “Wild camping” sites in NZ which are free!! Yes free! And from what I’ve seen most of them still have good facilities i.e. toilet and drinking water – i’m sure some of you will be horrified that this is what we consider good facilities but this is what happens when you spend 8 months in Asia. I think this app is going to come in handy when Joes mum and dad come to visit! Anyway enough about that, the campsite was in Pigeon bay and Joe was thrilled to see that it is right on the sea so he can go fishing!! It wasn’t free but was $15 which is not going to break the bank! So we decided to head there. On the walk to the car I decided ice-cream was a must and choose some lemon cheese cake and salted caramel flavours it did not disappoint!
Joe also took this opportunity to put some coolant in the car hoping it would solve our overheating problem. The campsite was about half an hour away and lovely. The drive was yet again beautiful and when we arrived there was no-one there! There were however a lot of what appeared to be abandoned caravans and to me it was a little like the setting of a horror film but no worries. The payment method at this campsite was an honesty box and I’m not gunna lie we contemplated not paying… but decided in the end that we’re nice people and ya know good karma and all that! – good job we did as just after I put the money in the box the owner turned up good timing. Time to get the tent up! Joe declared that he is a master at this and most certainly doesn’t need any help!!
To be fair to him the tent was up really quick and I was bundled back into the car and around the corner where Joe promised me the best fishing spot was. I enjoyed the sun and Joe fished off the jetty at the boat club!
I 1oved a bit further away around the corner as I wasn’t enjoying the wind. Suddenly I heard Joe shouting my name and ran down the jetty in hope of fish for dinner, alas I was disappointed he just wanted to tell me 1. it was windy 2. there were a lot of jelly fish and he didn’t think we should go swimming 3. he’s hungry! After taking all this information on board we decided to head back into town for some seafood! We enjoyed the drive back down the winding roads with the highlight being a farmer pushing about 100 cows across the road. We consider ourselves dairy farmers now and were itching to get out the car and offer a hand and check out his milking facilities. Just as the farmer pulled out behind his cows followed by his dogs the cutest thing ever happened and his two children pulled out behind him on their little motocross bikes! Defiantly gave us some ideas for the future.
Back in town we checked out a few places but decided to head back to the bar we’d been drinking in earlier! The staff there were very friendly and there was plenty of outdoor seating so we could enjoy the rest of the sunshine. On the way we brought some snacks for our evening at the campsite this included some creme brûlée fudge! The fudge shop gave us a lot of free tastes and I have to say it gave Beddgelert a run for its money-for those of you not familiar with Beddgelert this is where Joe and I used to live in North Wales and they have the best fudge in the world. We sat down to order dinner and it was a quick decision pork belly bites to start, followed by a seafood platter to share and a side of chips. Joe and I normally do this thing where we get sooooo hungry we decide we both need 4 starters and mains, and then we normally never ending up being able to finish anything and feeling sick so cautious of this we tried to order it bit less while reminding ourselves we can always get more! I think we ordered just the right amount! Joe loved the mussels but I thought they were a bit too fishy however the rest of it was brilliant! The garlic prawns were my favourite and the pork belly bites were amazing too. We finished everything off and its safe to say I think we ordered just the right amount although the last few chips were still a struggle!
The one thing that did let the bar down (although through no fault of their own) was a few locals who were very loud and very drunk its safe to say we left knowing more about Barbaras recent holiday to Morocco than we would of liked! But all in all a successful seafood dinner! Back to the tent for a few beers and a bottle or two of wine. This evening was really special for us we sat and watched the sunset while getting eaten alive by sandflies (bring bug spray Pete and Jacquie). We talked about the last 4 years and everything we’ve done and more importantly we talked about everything we still want to do. In one of our drunken evenings with Kadsan a few weeks ago he said something to us that rang home! What he said was about our early mornings and when you’re B1 and have to get the cows in at 4am he said “that time is yours” and I think tonight more than ever I understand what he meant. This night was ours and we wouldn’t change it! It was simple and chilled and just us and I know we’ll have many more nights like this! And we’ll always have a print of a cow wearing a swimming hat the remind us!!!
Once again thank you all for reading! We appreciate every like comment and subscribe! Let me know if theres anything you’d like more of! I am aware that since we’ve been living in NZ this has become more of a “lifestyle blog” and less of a “travel blog” But thats all going to change when we hit the road soon for a 3 week adventure and I hope you still enjoy hearing about all the little thing we get up to!
Loads and loads of love Paris X
03.11.2017 (Week 44 of challenge) Books Read:
- A Dance With Dragons 1: Dreams And Dust – George R. R. Martin
- A Dance With Dragons 2: After The Feast – George R. R. Martin
- Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
- Comfort food – Kitty Thomas
- Mark One – John Hindmarsh (must read sequel at some point)
- Girl Undone – Marla Madison
- The Sick House – Ambrose Ibsen
- The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
- On The Road – Jack Kerouac
- Survivor The Triumph Of An Ordinary Man In The Khmer Rouge Genocide – Chum Mey
- The Little Old Lady Who Broke All The Rules – Catharina Ingelman-Sundberg
- Bone Pit: A Chilling Medical Suspense Thriller – Bette Golden Lamb and J. J. Lamb
- Sabotage – Dale Wiley
- Dracula – Bram Stoker
- First They Killed My Father – Loung Ung
- Lucky Child – Loung Ung
- Automated Alice – Jeff Noon
- The Girl In the Picture – Denise Chong
- Orphan X – Gregg Hurwitz
- The Prophet – Kahlil Gibran
- A moveable Feast – Ernest Hemmingway
- Chez Stinky – Susan C. Daffron
- The Gift – Margaret McHeyzer
- The Curse – Margaret McHeyzer
- The last survivors – T. W. Piperbrock
- Boys – Scott Semegran
- Oh, The Places You’ll Go – Dr Seuss
- Before He Sees – Blake Pierce
- Click Date Repeat – K. J. Farnham
- The Game – Terry Schott
- Reach You – Mari Carr
- A Killing Truth – D. V. Berkom
- The Defiant Bride – Leslie – Hachtel
- War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy (Among others still a work in progress but I am making progress!)
Status: TEN WEEKS BEHIND – Nearly finished the one I’m on and still have high hopes of completing!!!!