back from holiday


on August 29, 2006

So we made it back from holiday in one piece!  I must admit though that on a few occasions we could have easily been a child down……. New Zealand’s a big place to hide the wee body of a stroppy kid I tell ya wink

So in chronological order:

A Wairarapa view

The first day was spent travelling from Wellington to Napier along State Highway 2 which is usually a 4 hour trip.  Now before my overseas friends get carried away with the term ”State Highway 2” you should remember that this is New Zealand and that our second most important road is for the most part a wiggly little road with a lane each way and nowhere near enough passing lanes. 314km (195 miles) really does take 4:00 to 4:30 under normal circumstances!  Of course travelling with a 3 year old and an 18 month old is hardly normal circumstances so a large part of the day was spent stopping in rest areas to eat/stretch legs/get Max to pee which was actually a very relaxing way to travel.  Time frames were not important so we got to see little places that we wouldn’t normally.  This trip would have been slightly shorter if we hadn’t needed to leave home three times! And after all that I went on holiday at the tail end of winter without a jacket of any sort – useless! 

The boys

When we got to Napier we checked into our accommodation at Kennedy Park (great place for kids – even if just for the Jumping Pillow!) and settled in for the evening.  Putting the kids to bed is when it all got interesting though…….. For Elliot there were three things that were new – 1) He was in his travel cot 2) He was in a new room and 3) he was sharing with Max for the first time.  After 30 minutes of him going mental we walked back in to have Max, who had been silent up to this point even with Elliot screaming (and boy can he scream), sit up and say “Mummy, I’ve been a good boy but Elliot won’t stop crying and I think I might cry too” – bless him.  We moved Max into our bed and he dropped straight off and once Elliot had gone to sleep (about 10 minutes later) we transferred Max back into the room with Elliot.

The next day was to be spent in Napier and in the morning we went to Marineland to see the dolphin (singular as the other one died a while back), the sea lions and the penguins.  The show itself was pretty mediocre as there was only one dolphin and she’s 36 but the big male sea lion was quite funny with his barking and clapping and we were there for feeding time which was all a bit of a laugh.  Max also had his picture taken with a little blue penguin which scared the hell out of him for some reason so I had it on my lap and Max sat next to me and stroked it.  After lunch it was off to the National Aquarium of New Zealand for more sea life and again we planned it for feeding time.  This time though it was divers hand feeding massive rays and 6’ long sharks which was much more exciting smile That was pretty much the day done and the boys went to bed better than the previous night but it still took a while.

The family at Huka Falls

The next morning we packed up and went for a bit of a wander around Napier then it was in the car for the 2 hour drive to Taupo.  The boys both slept for most of this leg which was nice smile Once there we had lunch, visited Huka Falls and wandered around town until we could check into our motel.  Once that was done it was off to the geothermally heated AC Baths for a dip in their very warm waters with the kids.  Neither of them are hugely comfortable in the water (which we need to sort out) but seemed to enjoy themselves none the less.  That night the boys were both so knackered that we put them to bed about a foot from each other and they basically crashed – yay!


The Saturday was the highlight for Max I think with the 6-7 hour trip home broken by a trip up to the snow (first time) at the Whakapapa skifield.  The weather was atrocious driving up the mountain but it stopped raining just after we pulled into the carpark and after meeting up with Vic’s sister Ali, her boyfriend and some other people we spent 45 minutes playing silly buggers in the snow smile Max absolutely loved the snow but Elliot, unstable as he is on his feet, was a little unsure and basically stood there giggling at everything that was going on around him.  Before too long it was back in the car and a two hour leg to Fielding where we stopped in to see some friends for an hour or so then into the final two hour leg home.  Unfortunately due to severe rain the usual last 30 minutes of our trip took two hours!  There had been a major slip over State highway One (only slightly better than SH2 BTW) and the diversions were causing havoc.

Home at about 6pm, boys into bed and then Vic and I could sit down and catch our breath…… The trip was a mixture of extreme frustration, tiredness and absolute joy at watching the boys experience loads of new things.  The thing about the holiday though is that the great parts will remain in my memory a lot longer than the bad smile

There are some additional photos in this flickr album

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One Response to “back from holiday”

  1. Gina says:

    Welcome back!!  Sounds like a very interesting trip loaded with lots of memories smile

    Great pictures too! smile