Hello again! I haven’t posted anything for a while as lockdown hasn’t been the most exciting as you all will agree. It was Freya’s 18th birthday on the 22nd April which was an action packed day of sun and social distancing visitors with a phew FaceTime calls to her sis in NZ to keep in the loop of the celebrations. It was sad for me to miss it as there was meant to be a secret surprise for me to come home after Vietnam before India to surprise Fizz on her birthday but unfortunately that couldn’t happen ? However, I felt like I was there, on the phone for present unwrapping and a tipsy call at the end of the day to tell me all about what had happened.
2 days later we went into Level 3 which meant we could extend our bubble a little more, drive to the beach for a walk, takeaways, and travel up to 45 mins, so we went up to Sheryl and Mike’s new business investment to enjoy the view over Orokawa Bay and do some gardening. A beautiful, 8 sleeper property overlooking the ocean where you can watch the container ships go and out of the port and even the occasional sighting of Killer Whales!
We extended our bubble to the Holiday Park managers Mon and Ron who are lovely and have a very dog-like cat, Winnie. We have fortnightly pot-luck dinners all together to keep up our social skills and spend time with some different faces.
Then on 14th May we moved to Level 2 and now I can see a bit more of New Zealand!
On Saturday morning we got up early and headed up to Auckland to pick up Bella and head up to Kawau Island to spend the night. Bella is one of Jojo’s best mate Scott’s daughter who did some travelling last year and stayed with Jojo in London while I was working with her. We got on SUPER well and she came out for lunch on my birthday with the family. She always said to come and stay with her if I ever found myself in NZ so Jojo and I went up to stay with her, Scott and her brother Oli on Kawau Island. Kawau only has 400 people living on it and has no cars so it was a nice little escape on the sea which I realised when Scott picked us up on his boat and motored our way to the island. After red snapper sandwiches for lunch we went for a little walk at Mansion House where there were peacocks everywhere and a gorgeous view of the bay. We then did some fishing on the end of the pier and I caught my first fish, a Red Snapper that was unfortunately too small to eat but was very exciting to catch. We warmed up by the fire and had a roast chicken, giant skillet cookie for pud and then watched Green Book with her full tummies! We had a slow morning with a big English breakfast for brunch to send us on our way back onto the mainland and for me to hit the city!
I spent the next 5 days walking around Auckland while Bella was unfortunately working at home. I did some serious retail therapy in the summer sales but also to buy myself some warmer clothes as it is getting quite cold now, as well as eating some yummy food and taking in the city.
I also got to talk to Elena, my Canadian “cousin”, while I sat at a restaurant next to the marina having a cup of tea and writing postcards with the sun going down.
I read on an article about things to do in Auckland and came across the free walking tour. I signed myself up as I had nothing better to do as the museum and art gallery were still closed, but unfortunately I got an email the day before saying I couldn’t do it as you need a minimum of 4 people and a max of 10. Annoyed I needed to find something else to do the guy emailed again saying the tour guide Catherine is up for still doing the tour if it’s not too late so on Tuesday I had a 3 hour tour of Auckland learning about the discovery of New Zealand, the local architecture and street art, to the native flora and fauna.
Bella’s mum, Mary, cooked us dinner on Wednesday evening and said tomorrow she will take me for a walk on Takapuna Beach and a drink on the Devonport Pier so I could see Auckland from the other side of the harbour which was beautiful to see on the ferry back to the city centre.
Feeling satisfied with how well I had done the city and pretty knackered from walking everywhere, my week of city life came to an end on Friday evening where we met Jojo on the way to Bella’s friend’s birthday weekend away where we had a burger at BurgerFuel and headed home to Athenree.
To end my post on a high I can say that I have got myself a job!! I sold myself to a few cafes and restaurants along Waihi Beach and succeeded with the Bowentown Cafe who had a girl quit the previous day and needed more staff. So I am being paid £9.45 an hour for as much work as I want so I can pay off my crazy spending spree in Auckland and not come home broke.
Oh and after our flight in mid-June was cancelled by Qantas, we have booked again for the 6th July so we will hopefully be home for the summer! Lots of love x