Travels – part One

It’s been months since my last post – mainly because life just got to busy with the things that life simply throws at you – and I found it hard to juggle my business and the part-time job at the local hotel – with frequent night-time work hours that left no time to even think about writing – yet alone doing it… So apologies for my long silence.

In February my parents came for a 3.5 week holiday to NZ and I thought – nice I am taking them around the southern part of the South Island – including New Zealand’s third Island (yes there is a third major Island) and will have plenty of time and opportunity to write on my blog then. Far from it!

Lion New Zealand - Sir Peter Blake's former Yacht that won the Sydney to Hobart one time
Lion New Zealand – Sir Peter Blake’s former Yacht that won the Sydney to Hobart one time

It is simply not easy to write anything on a tablet – or rather the external keyboard attached to it – when that one constantly turns off… it drove me up the wall and resulted in me giving up on the writing part and dropping the damn machine in for repairs today before the warranty runs out on Monday – talking about technology!

Anyway – back to the reason for this post – travels.

Local Tall ship - R Tucker Thompson
Local Tall ship – R Tucker Thompson

We started off here in the Bay with a lovely day on one of the local tourist boat trips – the  Fullers Cream Trip. It did get a bit choppy towards the hole in the rock but other than that it was a great day out – with plenty of dolphins to start with. Dolphins in the Bay

We also visited one of the countries oldest houses – the Kerikeri Stone Store and Kemp House which are managed by the Historic Places Trust here in NZ.

Kemp House - Kerikeri
Kemp House – Kerikeri










However – the real holiday started when we reached the South Island. We started off in Christchurch. A lot has been written about this most English of all New Zealand towns over the last few years – in particular since the earthquakes 3/4 years ago. I have been there exactly one week before the Feb 22 quake that cost so many lives and again two years ago with my brother when the inner city was still blocked off as the so-called “Red Zone”. There is still a lot blocked off and many buildings are just not there any more but the one thing that struck me most was the Cathedral.

Christchurch Cathedral - or what's left of it
Christchurch Cathedral – or what’s left of it

It is now possible to go back to Cathedral Square and look at what’s left – it’s heartbreaking to say the least. I vividly remember standing inside the Cathedral the week before the quake and admiring the great Tukutuku panels there – and now to look at the same building that looks battered and bruised, held up by scaffolding and condemned to be torn down soon – it’s a very strange feeling indeed.

Clock Tower in Cathedral Square - boarded up
Clock Tower in Cathedral Square – boarded up

I’ll leave you with some photos of the cathedral as it stands now – there are more on my flickr page. More about our travels in the next post of course!

another view of Christchurch Cathedral with a artificial gateway in front of it
another view of Christchurch Cathedral with an artificial gateway in front of it

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