The first week of the new year was spent in and around Mum and Dad’s place in Waikouaiti. It was nice to sit still for a week (Adele had gone back to work) and spend time hanging out at home, sorting through various family things, doing odd jobs and going on little day trips. It was not at all summery, however, with a whole lot of wind, rain and cold keeping us mostly to inside activities.
Quiet New Year’s was in Dunedin with Adele and some of her friends – we spent New Year’s Day at the “beach” which was very relaxing and not at all hypothermic in shorts and a T-shirt.
South Dunedin a couple of days later was even less inviting – but Dad, Mum & I had a nice lunch – inside.
Wet weather is good for museum visiting – this time the Otago Settlers Museum, which is worth the visit and has this impressive art deco entrance way to the old bus station.
We went home via Port Chalmers to check out the largest cruise ship to visit NZ – I can confirm it was in fact, large.
Things started to clear a little.
To try and find some slightly summery weather, I made an overnight break for Central Otago for a spot of mountain-biking with James, Dan & Jacqui.
On the way I stopped to visit friends on their lifestyle block at Goodwood. It was unbelievably windy and cold up there.
I looked out across some of the many hills I was rather missing not to be riding around and between.
The drive over the Pigroot was lovely – until I discovered fresh snow around Naseby. Snow, in the first week of January!
Back in East Otago, we took a family outing for lunch and a walk. Here looking over Karitane to Waikouaiti Beach – it was nice not to bike up that rather steep hill from Karitane.
Behind Waitati, the view is down to Blueskin Bay.
The clouds at Carey’s Bay could most charitably be labelled atmospheric – but only when they weren’t dumping rain.
We had a wonderful family lunch at the historic Carey’s Bay Hotel.
Driving towards the mouth of Otago Harbour, it was my first visit to the sleepy seaside settlement of Aramoana. Infamous for the 1990 massacre, it would form one of my earliest memories/impressions of big NZ national news. We went for a nice walk on the beach and promptly got caught in a downpour. Funny times (the latter, not the former).
It was a lovely lazy week at home with plenty of chat, reminiscing and thoughts of the future.
But gosh I was glad to be back in Hawke’s Bay, where it had really dried out and was actual, proper summer!