Happy New Year 2010


It is a very wet summer’s day here in Hamilton – holiday weekend, enough said!  Rainy day jobs especially in summer and at the beginning of the year include sorting out all the rubbish that has accumulated on my computer.  How many copies of one file can I have?  Don’t answer – if you are like me and terrified of deleting anything because it might be the only copy and VERY important then you tend to have the same file in multiple locations.  And then having realised you have it more than one place you don’t have time to check that they are actually the same copies of a document and not different versions of it, so you just leave it for that rainy day when you have nothing better to do!  Well that rainy day is here, and whilst I could get on with some prep for school on Tuesday, something else is always preferable! Anyway, to get back to the point, I was going through my “Correspondence” folder and organising the jumbled list into folders for each year and I realised that I didn’t finish telling you all about our summer hols this year.  A new and more interesting prospect than trawling through files and folders, so here goes!

HAPPY NEW YEAR everybody!  I know we are a month into the New Year but I don’t think I said it in the last blog so here it is!

Having made the decision to drift over the holidays, is that a contradiction in terms? Can you make a decision to drift or is drifting by its nature not making decisions?  Never mind, we did it!  So on January 2nd we packed up the car, and after a play on the beach and lunch we set off northwards.  Well we had to go south first as we were on a peninsula which was a bit of a pain, but the roads were quiet and we made good progress.  Even going through Auckland was uneventful and, just like the M6 toll road, the 7km of super-duper motorway north of Auckland, for which we were charged the princely sum of $2, was empty. As we approached our vaguely agreed destination of Paihia we started to think about campsites.  I had been driving for nearly 6 hours (with breaks – how can you not stop when you have two hungry boys, who need to go to the loo 5 minutes after you have stopped for food, but “didn’t need to go” when a toilet was available!?) so my laid back, it’ll all sort itself out, something will come up frame of mind was starting to disintegrate a bit and I was perhaps just a bit tetchy!  Especially after pulling into the first couple of campsites to find them full to brimming with tents, campervans and caravans squeezed in to tiny spaces to maximise revenue.  Not our idea of a pleasant stay!  It was all too much “Why did I ever think I could just drift?”  “What a stupid fool I am, the busiest time of the year and we don’t book in anywhere in advance!”  “We’ll end up in a crappy, squashed, noisy, claustrophobic campground, surrounded by the great unwashed!” Placated and cajoled by Nigel (he is such a patient man!) I calmed down, and we headed into Paihia where we stopped for an ice cream and a visit to the information centre. Armed with a list of campgrounds we set off to check them out.  After driving past a couple – they didn’t look like the sort we wanted to stay at – we eventually came round in a full circle, past the Waitangi Treaty ground and spotted a campsite that looked promising.  Indeed it was; plenty of space, some shade, away from the road, basic amenities – nothing flash, just clean and functional.  We booked in and then wandered into Paihia for some tea at one of the many culinary establishments the town boasts.  Pretty good Pizzas from Charlie’s, we have to say and a very welcome cold beer or two!

New Year in the Bay of Islands

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