Thursday, August 10, 2017


Bob and Linda of Bright Angel were next to us in Vuda Point, Fiji for a few days and they told us that if we were going to Whangarei, we should consider staying at Riverside Drive Marina rather than Town Basin.   Costs were probably around the same but RDM was decidedly funkier.   Great!   We do funky just fine.     RDM also had a parking lot which was a bonus should we get a car.    At the top of the ramp is the social powerhouse of the covered BBQ area and every Sunday we would get together for a potluck, even on into the winter months.  

                                   Dave of Kismet, me and Wendy of Midnight Sun

                                                 Beth and Ken of Eagle's Wings

                                         Wendy of Midnight Sun and Keith of Sadiqi

                                     Herbert, John of Midnight Sun and Mary of Kismet

                                                   Glenn and Pat of Northern Rose

Wine Tasting Party I hosted.    I bought several bottles of wine while on our South Island driving tour and decided to share them.   Naturally, everyone else brought wine, too.   Needless to say, there was a LOT of wine that night.   Good fun.

                             Jim and Nancy of Second Wind played some bluegrass one night.

                 Jenny of Lady and myself dressed up for the Burlesque night at The Butter Factory.
Richard and Adrienne of Moose who we met in Turkey way back in 2005.    They were doing a big trip to Australia, New Zealand and Antarctica and took a day to come and visit us.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Waitangi Day, Feb 2016   Pahia, New Zealand

Canoes, tattoos and hakas galore.    Waitangi day in New Zealand celebrates a treaty made between the indigenous people of New Zealand and the colonizing forces.    Sometimes the festivities incite tribal violence but we saw none of that at the celebrations in Pahia at the treaty grounds.    We lucked out with a beautiful day, wonderful music, Naval bands, and good food and a cultural feast for the eyes.    Jim, as usual, wandered away and chatted with some of the tribe members getting ready for their haka and made new friends and came with with a tribal name.

The canoes arrive!

And a Haka ensued.

Work Work Work - Jan-Feb 2016 in Whangerei

We did a lot of maintenance chores on Kelaerin while in Whangerei.   We pulled the mast at Sea Spar  with  Matt Smith .    Jim spent 6 weeks inspecting, removing pieces, replacing pieces, including all the wiring inside the mast, painting it himself and then putting it back on the boat.

There she goes and successfully at that.

Mast looking all new and back in place.  

Please don't hit the wine locker!!!

While he was doing that, I painted most of the interior of the boat again (by again, I mean this was probably the 5th or 6th time I've repainted the interior over the last 26 years).     We also replaced the cushions (badly needed); restitched the bimini and dodger (still will have to be replaced),  installed new radar and chart plotter, beefed up the wiring for our SSB radio, and many other projects.

Friday, January 8, 2016

New Zealand with Erin and Tim, December 2015

Our daughter, Erin, came for 3 weeks and invited her friend, Tim, to join us.   Before Tim arrived we took Erin up North to Kerikeri and Kawakawa and the Marsden Winery.

Here's the stone store again from across the river.

We made a quick stop in Kawakawa to show Erin the Hundertwasser Toilets, an artist's fanciful imagination gone wild with a normal, everyday, facility.  

Tim barely got on the boat and we told him we were pulling out for a short cruise.    I think both of them were pretty happy to get out on the boat for a while.    We exited the river not exactly sure of which way we would go first:  up to Bay of Islands or down to Great Barrier Island.   The wind would make the decision and since it was out of the North we sailed the 60 miles to Great Barrier Island at a pretty good clip and anchored off of Port Fitzroy.  Great Barrier Island is great for hiking, although many of the trails are still closed from a surplus of rain and subsequent damage it did to the trails a couple of years ago.  

We decided to make an overnight sail up to Bay of Islands to save time and take advantage of the SE winds.   Our first stop was Opua again, then off to Russell, a quaint village settled by whalers.   The houses here are a treat to look at.

Another quick motor around to Roberton Bay.   This bird was guarding her nest and was pretty annoyed with me for taking her picture.

The next bay was Urupukapuka.    The "trails" were for the most part mown into the grassy hillsides. It was seriously pastoral with grazing sheep, farm buildings, fences to crawl over, a favorite for all of us.

Tim got into the sailing thing and became a great crewmember.   He helped with everything, asking questions, eager to learn, so he is invited to come back anytime.

This is rounding Cape Brett

We stopped in Whangamumu Harbor for a night to visit the ruins of a whaling station.

Coming back into Whangerei around Cape Bream

We tried, not too hard and, therefore, not to successfully, to catch fish.

Tim and Erin took for a couple of days with our car to go to the Waitomo Caves then came back in time for CHristmas on the boat.

The next day Erin flew back home and Tim began the next stage of his New Zealand trip when we dropped him off at the rental car agency and he headed to points south.    Before they left we had a nice lunch at Ascension Winery near Warkworth and toasted the end of a perfect few weeks.