New Zealand – Day 11

 

Ok, so remember the “coffee in a can” that I bought at the grocery store in Auckland at the beginning of the trip? We STILL hadn’t tried it! This morning was the time. Becky and I were preparing breakfast in the camp kitchen at our campground. I opened the can. Inside was a light brown, thick, syrup. You mix 3 Tbsp of the goop with hot water and stir until dissolved. VOILA! You now have coffee with cream and sugar. It actually wasn’t too bad! I had two and a half cups. It was a little on the sweet side, but that’s how I like my coffee anyway. You can only buy this stuff in NZ or Australia. You can also purchase it in a tube (like a toothpaste tube), which is what I should have bought instead of the can. Why? Because once the can is open, you can’t seal it again! Since we couldn’t take it with us, I gave the rest of it away to a Maori patron at the campground. It made him (and me) happy! After b-fast, we packed up and headed into town to visit the Ashford Spinning Wheel Museum and Craft Village. You may also remember that Becky and I have been on a search for good New Zealand wool yarn for almost 2 weeks.

This whole time, we haven’t been able to find anything good or even decent! Well, I’ll tell ya what. We stepped foot inside the craft store and took one look and FREAKED out! We found it! The MECCA of good yarn!!! We jumped for joy, hugged, did a small jig, and then ran off in opposite directions, ohhhing, ahhhing and “Wow! Look at this!”ing the whole way…. What cool stuff they had. We spent a lot of time looking at everything. Becky adored all the spinning wheels in the museum (she took a class at the Folk School on spinning yarn and her favorite spinning wheel was a double treadle Ashford.) We had a bunch of fun and luckily, didn’t buy the whole store! We got some cool yarn and then moved on to some of the other shops in the craft village. At one of them, one of the shop owners showed us her lace tatting, as well as one of her current projects.

Can you imagine hand-making this????
Look at all the bobbins!!!
This gal has won some awards for her artwork. I’m not surprised. 🙂 After visiting all the little shops, we were, whaddya know, HUNGRY. We had been shopping for a while! There was a cozy cafe adjacent to the craft shop, so we had a nice lunch there. We sat in the bay window and
Becky had a salmon quiche and I had a chicken, cranberry and brie panini. YUM-O! After lunch, we each bought different necklaces that we spied and couldn’t live without (funny, huh?) and then drove to the city of Christchurch. The city was a little intimidating at first, but once we got into the town center, it wasn’t so bad. We parked and found our way to the iSite. We got some info on the Top 10 then walked down to the Art Centre. On the way, we passed through a pretty park that you would never guess was in the middle of a big city!

Also, I spied an electric trolley going down the street! I took this picture mostly for my dad, because I knew he would appreciate it most of all. 🙂

When we got to the Art Centre, it ended up being housed in a neat old church. There were a ton of interesting shops and galleries inside. Our browsing/shopping got outta hand. We completely lost track of time as a result of all the neatoness! We had to get back to our RV before we got a parking ticket. We made it back before getting an infraction. I made a quick call to my travel agent whom I bought my impromptu Christchurch to Auckland plane ticket from to make sure all was ok with that first leg of my journey tomorrow. It was! Excellent. Off to the Top 10 campground we went. It wasn’t too difficult to find, thank goodness. Once situated in our camp spot, we cleaned out the van and I commenced packing 10 tons of crap in a 1 ton bag. Somehow, I managed to do so! We then made “dinner”. I call it “dinner” because I don’t know how else to describe it! We wanted to finish up stuff that we bought, so it consisted of some terrible baked beans in tomato sauce, ramen soup and champagne to celebrate my last night in NZ. We chuckled at our silly, but memorable “dinner”! Afterward, we took showers and relaxed (by knitting and journaling and chatting). We kept hearing what sounded like horns and children playing. We thought it was a rugby match, but when I went to satisfy my curiosity by peeking over the fence, I discovered it was a bunch of cows that were grazing right next to us! As it got dark, I went to bed kinda early. Tomorrow I start my long journey back to the US. I absolutely loved my time in NZ, but I was homesick and couldn’t wait to get home to my David!
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