Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

Giant sand dunes at 90-mile beach
As we sit here near Russell, confined to the boat by driving rains, the kids are tired and a bit cranky.  We finally caved to their pleadings of being allowed to stay up until midnight to celebrate the New Year. Even though Matt and I could barely stay awake once we passed 10:30, we ultimately had a great view of neighboring Paihia's fireworks display. There wasn't any imbibing, since the weather was delivering 35-40 knot gusts that had us concerned about dragging and/or fending off other dragging boats. We ended up being fine, but there was a bit of drama in the next bay over when the winds knocked a 60-foot boat off its anchor and set it adrift without anyone on board.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

En Zed (NZ)

Hundertwasser toilets in Kawakawa

They say 'zed' here in New Zealand rather than 'z'. They also don't measure distances in blocks (think meters) or have brussel sprouts. Other than little things like that, and if you disregard the obvious  British influences (accents, driving on the left side), being in New Zealand is a lot like being back in the U.S. Among other things, this means a cornucopia of foodstuffs.  Even small convenience stores carry much more than most of the 'big' stores we have visited over the last few years.  The kids were literally running around the supermarket yelling, 'Look! They have shrimp!  Look! They have broccoli!'