First stop was Pohara for one or two fresh scallops (see earlier blog post)
Then we braved the Cook Straight crossing in the Mustang stopping at Simon's childhood haunts on the way to Rotorua. This is taken at the Tongariro River swing bridge where Simon played as a kid.
I painfully had to wait every morning while Simon washed the car before our departure - he even made his mum give up her garage spot - (mind you it was in the Mamakau's! - Si)
We had a lovely night out in Rotorua with Simon's family.
Next stop was Waiuku to see Jim, Giselle and Oliver. It was great to see them settled into their own home and be enjoying more time off work!
After a few wines, we all though it was a great idea for the strangers, I mean visitors, to take the role of undercover operatives and case the competitions bar. Giselle I meant to tell you I still have the competions drink price list in my purse!
Next stop was Auckland to visit Dave, Louise, Rebecca and Troy. We caught the ferry into Auckland for the day and the weather lived up to it's reputation.
As always the Megsons made us feel at home and we pigged out and watched movies one rainy afternoon.
From Auckland we drove back to Nelson, nearly missing the Ferry - note for New Zealanders wises online map appears to have an interesting and innacurate way of working out travel times. It wasn't a complete disaster though as we did get to see some wonderful countryside and falling snow on the route via Wanginui. Mind you I'll never live it down...
The holiday would not be complete without a spot of painting - and as the Mustang man cave has not yet cost enough time and money my efforts (grudginly) were steered in that direction. The end result was nice though.
We spent a few evenings with friends as always at the Bishopdale Brewing Company with a fiery brew or two...
The grand finale of the holiday was a trip to Brad's grandmothers bach at Lake Rotoroa....
PS - our last day we found out we had won a tender and are now due to be the proud owners of a block of 4 units - looks like we'll be back in NZ in 45 days!