We write this from a very hot but very wet Fiji mainland.
In the interests of good blog-keeping Christmas was spent in Raglan, a small surf town on the west coast of New Zealand’s North Island. Far too much food and drink was consumed and even two walks along the beach failed to stem the ill-effects. Still, it was a memorable day and a Christmas barbecue has much to recommend it.
On Boxing Day (Day 90) we travelled back up north to the outskirts of Auckland, just near the airport, where we were to spend our final night.
Geographically-minded readers might at this point realise that we haven’t ventured to New Zealand’s South Island. Some may throw their hands up in disgust, some may scream ‘tragedy’, ‘criminal’ or sit mute with shock. But hear us out.
We had a difficult decision to make. Do we spend most of our time behind the wheel and in petrol stations? Do we merely scratch the surface of the two islands? Or do we instead explore the North Island with at least a medium-sized toothcomb? In the end we decided we had too much respect for New Zealand to subject it to a wham-bam-thank-you-mam two-island tour. Besides, it gives us an excuse to come back!
And New Zealand being New Zealand, even our final night, in a campsite only a couple of miles from the airport, provided us with one last taste of the country’s natural beauty – a beautiful honey and blood-orange sunset.
Today’s flight to Fiji was supposed to be with Air Pacific but New Zealand Airways had to step-in – seamlessly, one must add – at the last minute. It was our gain. Check out the safety information video that was provided. And play it loud. It received a deserved round of applause at the end. A classic!
From tomorrow morning and for the next two weeks we will be island-hopping across the Yasawa Islands. They are north-west of Fiji’s two major land masses and should hopefully be drier and sunnier than elsewhere in the region at this time of year. Here’s hoping anyway.
We’ve been told not to expect any banks, shops or Internet access, so the blog may well lie dormant for a while (I’m sure bloggers and blogees alike could do with a little rest).
So if you don’t hear from us we hope you all have a great Hogmanay. We’ll leave it to Barney and his friend to wish you a Happy New Year. Here’s to a fun-filled, healthy and prosperous 2012.