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Day Five of the October break

Today we journeyed north, Finn, Asher, Annie (Asher's girlfriend) and me. We left early-ish, about eight-fifteen, but it still took forever to get here (Tauranga, that is). Despite new roads and less towns, more bypasses and better curves, it still takes longer because WE CAN'T SPEED. You can't do anything over 100km/hr and that really is a shame on the long stretches and through the forests. So it's easier than ever to do the journey but it still takes longer than the old days when we could put our foot down and fly.

Did I see anything interesting on the long journey (seven and a half hours including two stops)? I saw a LOT of calves. I guess calving was in August so the calves are just emerging as their own little units, gathering together in huddled groups in selected corners of fields, possibly wondering where their mothers are.
I saw more shops in Sanson and less houses in Rata.
I saw a three engine goods train crossing the Makohine viaduct (our 7th highest viaduct).
I saw the worst parking ever in the Wairakei BP station, where a man practically angle parked in front of the pump and I had to squeeze in to get my own petrol. He didn't seem to care at all. May have been a tourist. But tragic parking skills.
I saw some beautiful silvery trees close to Rotorua. We don't get much deciduous tree life here but these looked like winter trees. Had Finn been awake, I would have gotten him to take a pic.
I saw that despite Ngongotaha having pretty flower baskets hanging throughout their tiny shopping strip, the houses looked pretty poor along the main road there. Must be tough times.
And so I am north. It's warmer, possibly drier and definitely tidier.

Translations for that meandering chat:
Sanson, a tiny township - look, they have their own community website http://www.sanson.net.nz/
Rata, a dead village, almost all houses and businesses obliterated
Wairakei, township on thermal power station near Taupo
Ngongotaha, small township 10km from city of Rotorua. Wikipedia says this: It is located 10 kilometers northwest of Rotorua city, and is often regarded as an outer suburb of the larger centre. However, most locals would be adamant that Ngongotaha is an independent village in its own right. Its population is 4000. Its name is derived from a legend of Ihenga, the famous Māori explorer. It is said Ihenga met the Patu-paiarehe on Mount Ngongotaha and was offered a drink from a calabash (ngongo = to drink, tahā = calabash.[1]

There. So. Tomorrow is another day...

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
moth2fic
Oct. 8th, 2012 10:23 am (UTC)
Sounds like a good journey despite the length of time it too! I spent the weekend away and had two motorway drives to do - about two and a half hours each way. It's fast but you don't really see anything and it's quite stressful!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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