Well I have flown again. 22nd of August was the beginning of my last weekend in New Zealand. It was a lovely weekend for the most part with a few little hitches. Mostly involving the big one ignoring me and forgetting the sunglasses again. I managed to escape from the house with the giant cat though so that is a slight bonus.
The day started off with a quick trip to Creative Tauranga. These guys are working on creating bronze statues of Hairy MacClairy from Donaldson’s Dairy for going on display. This is partly because Dame Lynley Dodd is from the area, apparently they sculptures are all finished, but are not fully in place on the waterfront yet. In the Creative Tauranga offices they have 2 of the sculptures for you to look at. Schnitzel von Krumm and Bottomley Potts. Schnitzel was lovely and I got to sit on his back. I also sat on Bottomley as well, but then the child decided that Bottomley was hungry and tried to feed me to him. Seriously this family has issues!
The rest of the day mostly consisted of driving up to a place called Auckland. For the most part this was boring for me. I just sit in the car, I can’t even see out the window when I am actually sat in my place. It was hot and sunny though! The big one did take ust to a place called Dairy Flat to visit someone she knew. They weren’t there, however their property has some lovely busy right next to it and the Big one and I just sat for awhile and watched my cousins the fantails flit around us. It was our first time seeing them for as long as we did while we were sat there.
After fantail spotting we drove to see an ancient. This ancient is apparently 94 this year. She was much smaller than the other ancient I met. Very lovely lady though with lots of crooks and crannies in her house that I could explore, investigate and hide in.
We then went out to dinner with this ancient and the big ones sister. I was starving at this point. The big one hadn’t let me forage in the bush while watching the fantails, told you she likes starving me. Do I need to go on a diet? Is that what she is trying to tell me? The restaurant we went to was a buffet style restaurant, some of the food was delicious and some of it I know the husband can do much, and they should have been ashamed to have put it out! I am not sure I should have eaten some of the food I ate!
Does 3 courses seem excessive for a little kiwi? The soup was delicious, I am in denial about what the main was, I will not eat my cousins! The pudding was very pink!
Saturday dawned bright and sunny! This is never a good sign when I don’t like the sun! The big one dragged me out to a place called Beachlands to catch up with someone who she meet in the UK originally and has moved back to Godzone. Beachlands was very beautiful, but very sunny. As you can probably guess by it’s name it has a beach. A beach isn’t natural to a kiwi, but as my voice seems to be ignored for the most part. We went rock pooling again.
We did seem shrimp, and crabs in the rock pools. The most interesting thing in the rock pools though was anemones. You put your finger into the centre of these little things and they cling onto your finger then when you pull your finger out they fold in on themselves. Now obviously I don’t have a finger so I had to insert my beak, but the same thing happened.
As you can see by these pics though it was very bright and sunny. My eyes really were hurting, but the big one has once again not got me any sunglasses. When is she going to get me some sunglasses? She did however let me go looking for grubs under some pohutukawa trees. These trees are fabulous for climbing if you like that sort of thing. Being a flightless bird I am not that bothered by that activity. There roots are great for looking under though as they are mostly out of the ground.
Can you guess what the big one then made me do? She doesn’t like heights either, so not sure why she decided to do this to me. She decided that she wanted to climb this tree. She apparently had the urge. Fine for her, but then she dragged me along for the ride too!
So not only was I up a tree where I don’t want to be but then she made me look directly at the sun! Evil I tell you, Evil!
After Beachlands we went back to the Hotel to meet up with the dad and the sister. It was still nice and sunny so apparently rather than staying in the cool and darker hotel we had to go out again! This time we went to a place called Ambury Park. This was big park with lots of different areas to explore. There were animals, baby sheep, baby calves, ducks, chickens and others. There was a seaside area, some trees and other bits and bobs to look out. The sun was starting to go down so I should be grateful for small mercies.
The torture was not over for the day though. Down my the shoreline was lots of volcanic rocks, apparently this whole area of Auckland is volcanic, although not active at the moment. Next to Ambury Park was a volcanic called Mangere Mountain. We had to go to it apparently. Apparently being able to say you went into a volcano crater is amazing! Hmmm, not so sure! All I could think about was what if this goes boom while I am sat in this crater, all over for me, although on the brightside the big one would stop torturing me then.
I suppose the fact that she let me end the day with a little forage in the dark as well I should be grateful for!
Three guesses what the weather was like on Sunday morning? It is supposed to be winter in this country and I can tell you this winter did not feel like any other winter. Another sunny warm day, what is this evilness. Not only does the big one torture me with sun but so too does this season! Today the big brother and all his clan were coming up to join us and we were going to play something called mini putt. I have never played it before so was a little excited but was bothered by the lack of sunglasses again. Plus it meant I was going to see the kids again, they are little cuties.
For the most part the game seemed to consist of hitting a little ball into holes. The holes weren’t interesting at all though, there were no grubs in them at all! Very disappointing. The mini putt course itself was interesting, we were pretending to be pirates around this course. That was fun. It was apparently boys against girls. The boys won, yay us boys, although I am not sure I helped too much.
Next stop after this was Butterfly Creek. I was looking forward to this, because butterflies are grubs right? I could eat in here I was sure of it. Whoop!
In the butterfly house we were out of the bright sun as well, so that was another bonus to the butterfly place as well. Grubs and out of the sun, double whoop!
I decided that I wouldn’t eat this grub as it was almost as big as I was. There were lots of beautiful butterflies/grubs to look at.
One of them even decided that he was going to oblige me by actually landing on my beak. Whoop an easy meal that I didn’t even have to hunt and look for. Unfortunately the sister didn’t want me to eat it and it was tickling my beak as well, which made me laugh. I decided that maybe I would leave this pretty one alone as well. I suppose I can’t say that the big one was starving me if I made the decision not to eat? After the butterflies we looked at some alligators. They were big and scary looking, thankfully they couldn’t get to me, as I am sure they would have eaten me even though I am only little.
We then went into a room that had lots of grubs in it as well. I tried to eat some of these, but they were surrounded by glass so they were lucky. It had nothing to do with their size honest! (Ok maybe it did as this weta was as big as me!)
Although even though they are big weta are vegies and don’t eat creatures like me. As well as all of these creatures Butterfly Creek also have dinosaurs, not sure I can see the link myself! Dinosaurs are vicious and have sharp teeth. The big one tried to feed me to them as well!
Thankfully one of my cousins was also there and came and rescued me from the mean and nasty dinosaurs.
I found another cousin as well, although the Moa cousin told me that this cousin wasn’t really a cousin and was a meanie and would eat me. Found that hard to believe as it feathers and everything. What do you all think?
I was sick of getting scared and wanted some tender loving cuddles, thankfully I found a fluffy to cuddle.
Guess what, another sunny day! Today was the last day in this sunnier than sunny wintery wonderland! The big one, the dad, the sister and the child dragged me to a place called MOTAT, this seemed to involve lots of reminiscing of what it was like when the big one was little. Not sure this was true if I am honest. I decided that I needed to make my own escape.
Didn’t seem to work for some reason. Next stop was then trying to phone for help.
This phone didn’t seem to work very well. I pushed things and nothing happened. What was I doing wrong. I am sure I had unlocked it correctly as well. Now during the day the big one had eaten, and then they went to another buffet restaurant as well, did she feed me? No. Back to the neglect. Yesterday the lack of food was my fault as I decided not to eat the pretty butterflies, but today NOT MY FAULT! Last stop of the day was the airport. This involved lots of tears from the big one and the child.
I was glad it was night time and the sun wasn’t around anymore. Plus I got to actually fly!
Next stop China!