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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

And the journey begins

Tuesday 3rd, 13 hours ahead of UK 

For once the Kookaburras laughing at us at 5 in the morning didn't get a few choice swear words aimed at them as they were a very welcome alarm clock. We were ready for 6.30am, time for my brother to get us to the airport. He estimated a 45-minute journey and, with us needing to be checked in 3 hours before the flight due to leave at 10 am,  he managed to do it in record time. It wasn't all plain sailing though because going through security and border control I was pulled out of the line, had a full body Xray and then fleeced! Do I look that much like a terrorist? Ian also got the same treatment so I reckon they were just pulling people out at random.

Flight took off on time and, with a tail wind, arrived in Auckland ahead of schedule. But that wind!!! At one point I wondered if the wings would ever be on the level. They were up one second and down the next and I had visions of landing on the runway sideways. At the last minute the plane straightened up and we hit the deck somewhat harder than I would have liked. Thank goodness we got down okay! Not brilliant weather either very overcast and drizzly and the 25° actual temperatures felt more like 17°.

Leaving Sydney airport.

Looked promising, weather-wise, as we approached Auckland

But the nearer we got to the airport, the cloudier it got.

 A motel had been booked for the night but not transport to it. We headed for the taxi rank and was shocked at the price of 35 NZ$. Decided to go to the info desk and ask what the going rate was for a 6 km journey. "Why not phone the motel and ask to be picked up" was the reply and that is exactly what we did. Within 30 minutes we were in the room, upgraded to a family as no small rooms were available and all for no extra cost.
So bring on NZ. We collect the campervan tomorrow and the first port of call (after stocking up with food and booze) will be Bay of Islands.


Tom and Jan said...

I hope the sea isn't rough when you do the "hole in the rock" trip!

Ian and Irene Jameison said...

Love choppy seas, the rougher the better. It's flying I hate. The hole in the rock looks amazing and will check out the price before we decide to go ahead. Got to start watching the pennies now!

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