After a month in Bali we were back in New Zealand for our long awaited housesit in Central Hawkes Bay. This 7 week housesit was scheduled almost a year before it began! After a brief stop in Auckland we were on our way South.
Where We’ve Been.
2 nights in Rotorua – AirBnb.
55 nights in Waipukurau – Housesit.
7 nights in Wellington – AirBnb.
Finally stopping in Rotorua. If you’ve ever done any research on visiting New Zealand’s North Island, than you have definitely heard of Rotorua. It is a hotspot of thermal activity… and reeks of sulfur because of it. It’s thermal waters have been used to treat ailments since before settlers arrived.
As our time in NZ was drawing to a close, we wanted to go ahead and check it off our list. And since it was on our way from Auckland to Central Hawkes Bay, we stopped for two nights and one day.
We had a lovely breakfast at a little authentic French creperie before heading to spend the day in the thermal baths. It was a nice relaxing day, even though my hair smelled a bit like sulfur till I was able to shower at our housesit several hours away.
Housesitting for awesome pets. We had some truly amazing animals to take care of at our last housesit… but mostly I’m talking about one in particular. A ginger kitty named Rogan. He definitely stole a piece of my heart, and I am desperately missing his snuggles as I write this. The others were good too.
New pair of specs. Months and months ago I lost my glasses. All in all not a big deal, since I wear contacts pretty much everyday. I usually wear glasses when flying and at night after I’ve taken out my contacts. While on a little outing from our housesit we passed by a rather cool optical shop and popped in. We ended up chatting with a local woman a bit and she gave us a handful of awesome restaurant recommendations in the area. I also picked out a frame to send off and get filled with my prescription (after having an eye test to get my scrip). So new glasses and restaurant recs… win!
A fancy day out. Near the end of our housesit, we spent a special day out in the nearby town of Napier, an Art Deco heaven. We grabbed lunch at a rural American BBQ restaurant, that was a surprisingly good Kiwi attempt. Then we meandered the art deco streets before hopping into a vintage, 1930s soft top Buick convertible to be driven around to nearby wineries for tastings. We ended the day at one of the best restaurants in New Zealand, Pacifica. It was a really wonderful day.
Another brief stop in our favorite NZ City. Again, knowing our time was coming to an end, we zipped down to the capital for a week. We found a new favorite cafe, Maranui Cafe; we toured Weta Cave, where all manners of movie magic are created, including most of what is featured in Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. We spent sunny days aimlessly wandering the coastline and Cuba Street. Most of our longterm travel life consists of us simply enjoying where we are, and we definitely enjoy being in Wellington.
Unexpected household troubles. I really hope that the people we housesat for don’t ever come across this blog, because their house was kind of disgusting. In the listing there were only pics of it from the outside and it looked like a charming little farmhouse. Well, there were rotting wooden steps, dust, cobwebs and spiders everywhere, the tank of the toilet leaked. Yet somehow the thing that most annoyed us was the internet. It was worse than dial-up. I am aware that is a first world problem, and I feel like a tool for mentioning it, but that’s the truth. We were told we would have access to high speed wi-fi. Not the case, and J spent quite a bit of time on the phone with the provider trying to sort it out.
To make matters worse, we also barely had cell reception. We were in a data black hole.
This is a short post for a low-key two months. Once we settled into the housesit we spent our days walking the farm, running the dogs, and trying to get the internet to work.
A month in Auckland…