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Road Trip

Sunday, January 10th, 2010

Auckland, New Zealand (via Whananaki)

New Zealand is smaller than we remember. We can get to the Far North, spend the day with two different groups of friends and family, and be back home again – all in one day!


Once upon a time we thought twice about going that far just for a weekend. It certainly would have seemed crazy to get up at 6:30am to get to the beach by 10. But it was comfortable, not crazy. The roads are so smooth, and wide and well marked and signposted. The countryside, pleasant enough – not spectacular, but not untidy or ugly or uninteresting.


The destination….well, that’s the kind of place people travel right round the world to find! Here’s the beach and it was a busy day:

Remember these photos of Italy? Worlds apart, yes?

We wished we could stay for a week or two (without all the palaver of setting up camp – we’re a bit over packing and unpacking right now)…..oh, I mean stay at Whananaki – NOT the Riviera!!

Guess what!

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

Auckland, New Zealand

Another BBQ (you knew that).
Same formula: meat on the grill, salad and bread on the table, something deliciously sweet for dessert, good friends, laughter, conversation.

Forgotten again: the camera.

All this socialising means we’re not making a lot of headway with the unpacking! There are still boxes piled up around the place, but we ignored them all and attacked the garden this morning.

From this:

To this:

We discovered strawberries and bok choy and leeks and teeny hiding potatoes and rhubarb (could hardly miss that, it’s so enormous!) and a bit of lettuce and one lone sunflower. Our lunch engagement prevented us from digging in compost and planting seedlings, but we’ll get there eventually.

We might even get the boxes unpacked.

summer BBQ

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010
Auckland, New Zealand For our readers abroad (and now that we are back we should use the kiwi-ism and call you/them “overseas readers”…..we don’t tend to say “abroad” here – probably because in order to go abroad we have to ... [Continue reading this entry]

lost in space

Sunday, December 27th, 2009
sleeping at Dubai airport….onwards towards Auckland We lose most of today somewhere. We left Istanbul yesterday evening and took a four hour flight (just long enough to watch a movie and enjoy dinner) to Dubai, arriving when it was pitch black. ... [Continue reading this entry]


Saturday, December 26th, 2009
on the plane towards Dubai tonight….and onwards It’s our last day before the homeward flight tonight. Kboy12 talks incessantly – he does that when he’s excited. The bags are packed and stacked in the storage room. We have to confess to taking ... [Continue reading this entry]

where are we?

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009
Eceabat, Turkey (via Pergamum and Canakkale) Immediately after breakfast severe cramps grip my stomach. Could it be the super-salty pickles we just ate with our eggs and tomatoes? Surely not that quickly! Is it perhaps the pide we ate for ... [Continue reading this entry]

caught by surprise

Friday, December 11th, 2009
Brasov, Romania We were starting to think Jack Frost was listening to our plans and deliberately foiling us. We went to Mongolia in search of snow – it started one hour *after* we left. We had already been to south ... [Continue reading this entry]

three days ago (magical moments)

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009
Brasov, Romania Some days you wake up and you have no idea that the day is going to be filled with surprises and magical moments. Saturday was one of them. Because we were invited to a local church on Sunday, the ... [Continue reading this entry]


Tuesday, December 1st, 2009
Brasov, Romania December first always signifies the beginning of our Christmas preparations. A year ago we were in Laos, the most non-Christian country we have visited. This year, it’s Romania, and we have six months of frequent church-visiting behind us. One of the ... [Continue reading this entry]

intergenerationalism (soapbox)

Monday, November 30th, 2009
Brasov, Romania Please note this post is written by the Crazy-Mama of the family. The Sensible-Father does not necessarily share all the sentiments! Here’s a little girl and her great-grandmother. Mother and grandmother were there too, but we didn’t get a picture ... [Continue reading this entry]