John and Cynthia:  Knotperfect

New Zealand: 2019 Page 2

Back to the north of Auckland now.  Just out from Whangarei there are two villages, Pataua North and Pataua South.  There is no road directly between them and the road access via Whangarei is about 40 kilometres.  There is, however, a footbridge.

Our camper is on the parking area right in the middle of the photo.  This used to be a freedom camping spot but that is now forbidden.  It's such a shame that a few people misbehaving have ruined so many amazing experiences for others.  We had to settle for the Parua Bay Yacht Club.

Parua Bay

Further north, Waitangi and Paihia

There is a delightful campground right on the water, Waitangi Motorcamp, and we chilled there for a couple of nights.  Paihia is very touristy and lots of cruise ships visit.

Paihia fish

It is also a base for big game fishing.

Waitangi is really all about the Treaty grounds.  It is, according to their website, New Zealand’s most important historic site.  John and I have never actually visited as the entrance fees are more expensive than we are interested in the history!  Tickets are NZ$50 each if you are an overseas visitor.

(The Te Papa museum in Wellington is fabulous and is free to visit.)

Plant seen in a local garden, well over 1 metre tall!

Known as the Lawless North, Um, these may come in handy?

New Cop cars

Back on the road southbound, a few sights from our trip..

Moving house

Yes, that is really a house being moved to a new location.  There are 'shops' where you can go and choose one for delivery to your section (piece of land)

Nice number plate but not much room for the wine


 if you can't read it, it's KRITTA.
Pausing once again in Whangarei, we have only just noticed the Marina clock

Whangarei Marina clock

The time-ball is dropped at 1 pm daily. The sequence begins at five minutes to the hour when the ball is raised half way, then at 2 minutes to the hour, it is raised to the top of the pole. At precisely 1pm the ball is dropped. This is the traditional sequence of the original time-ball located at the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, London, which began operating in 1833 and is still in operation today.

The dropping of the time-ball was a method of signalling the precise time to sailing ships anchored in the surrounding harbour, thus providing an opportunity to check the accuracy of the ship's chronometer upon which the navigator depended for calculating the ship's longitude at sea.

Copied from the info board.

There is a clock museum nearby, which is well worth a visit too.


Great to meet up with all our Pokémon friends again. Plus new Pokémon.

Virizion   Stantler

And if you have one of these for trade, you will be very popular


I was delighted to find this planting ...

The little trees are Pseudopanax ferox and must be about 10-12 years old as they have changed their leaves to the mature type.  I bought 3 of these last year and hoping they will survive the UK winter.  Indoors!

The brown plants at the bottom are actually very healthy, the Kiwis seem to delight in growing things that look dead!

Just before Christmas, we had a delightful day at Paint the Earth with Hannah and Daniel.

Paint the Earth are based in Auckland.   They provide a large variety of base pottery items ready to be decorated.  Once the customer has painted to their satisfaction, the items are then fired.  Great fun and creates some fabulous keepsakes.  This year Dan made his dinner plate for the year, Han made a spoon-rest for us, and a little dragon.  I did 2 mugs for Han and Dan.

Before and after firing..

Han's plate before firing   Han's plate after firing

The colours intensify and the pieces shrink a little after firing.  I haven't yet taken pics of Dan's plate and the mugs after firing.

Christmas Day was nice and simple.  23 friends at one time but this pic was taken after the little ones had left!  Set up by Hannah.

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