Touring NZ, Family Always !

May the 8th to 11th. Currently holed up dodging the rain near Piopio, NZ.

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5 Days & 500 kays,
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Jenny with her, Aunty Dianne.

Jenny’s cousin Haley, her son Sam & the crazy swimming mutt Scooby.

At the moment Jenny & I are focused on catching up with her extended Kiwi Family, we have been spending a couple of days here, couple of days there. There has been some sight seeing along the way. Just in case you are wondering, how did Jenny end up having all these Kiwi Relatives, here is a brief family history lesson.

Way back in 1967(?) Jenny’s, Mum, “Lorraine” met a West Australian Shearer working in NZ & at the young age of 19 (& pregnant) moved over to Western Australia with her new Husband, Rodney. The rest as they say is history.

Jenny & I have been together long enough for me to know most of the family history since her Mum, Lorraine arrived in outback Western Australia. She has had a pretty tough life as it turned out & has proven to be an amazingly strong, resilient, woman. Oh by the way Lorraine, Happy Mothers Day, Jenny & I both Love You.

We stumbled across a couple of photos during our exploration of NZ’s, North Is. here is a pic of Jenny’s Mum we saw, taken during a NZ visit she did back in the 90’s & the NZ Hooker Clan family photo from the late 50’s.

Though it is very scenic & the people are great, New Zealand is not a very cheap country to visit. Petrol (91RON) costs $1.90 per litre, median house price of Auckland is $800K, Wellington $600K, the food is generally dearer then Aus. from what we have seen. They have a Goods & Services Tax (GST) of 15% applied to most things including all food. In general the people seem happy & the country seems progressive. We have also found the lack of wildlife really weird. I don’t intend any disrespect here to the Kiwi’s, the North Island comes across to Jenny & I as one big “Tourist Farm”. That’s not too say there aren’t many natural wonders to see, there is. It is just a general observation as we randomly drive around. The best part for us so far has been catching up with the Kiwi Crew Relo’s, they have been so generous & accommodating towards us it’s been mind blowing….thanks guys !

Morrinsville Cows, all up there are 42 of these painted Cows spread around the town.

There has been a few grumbles to us about the Australian Government recently increasing Tertiary Fees for NZ Citizens studying in Aus. to the full rate & with no discount. Up until recently the Kiwi’s received the same concession as Australian’s when studying in Australia. There is a close relationship between Australia & New Zealand, so it isn’t hard to upset the apple cart when changes are implemented.

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Raglan Surf Beach, looked great, nice Town as well.
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Jenny & I found this seriously funny, the sparrows wouldn’t go near Becky Beetle to get the crumbs, way too scary.

Checking out Bridal Veil Falls / Waireinga .

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That is not a rental Van on gravel & we are NOT lost, we know we are somewhere on NZ’s North Is. !
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Jen with her cousin Mike, he & his then Girlfriend, Jess (now married) spent some time with us in West Aus. 10 years ago.

We are now well into our second week of the NZ Tour, so far the Autumn Weather has been pretty good, today it is raining & the forecast is for it to rain until lunch time tomorrow. Due to the rain we have decided to spend an extra day on the farm that Jess & Mike manage. Tomorrow our journey will continue onwards, with new experience & new things too see. Thanks for following, Will.

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Our outlook today, Thursday, 11th of May. Spending an extra day at Mike & Jess’s farm they manage. We are actually in LOTR Middle Earth Territory here and some of the filming was done very close by.

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