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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.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Meeting friends and finding a relative

The nearer we got to Wellington the windier it got. Not called the windy city for nothing! On route to see Marilyn and David we passed a place called Foxton. With it being Saturday signs were up telling of a Dutch market. Well with me having dutch connections (Mum and Dad both dutch) and loving the dutch food we made a slight detour. A windmill at the centre was a big attraction and for a dollar each we could climb up to the third level to see the how it worked.  

The market was situated at the bottom of the windmill, not really a market as we know it with loads of stalls, but shelves filled with dutch delicacies. Dutch Leyden cheese (has cumin and caraway seeds), honey and ginger cake (delicious with butter spread on it), liquorice, Haagse hopjes (coffee sweet) Speculaas biscuits (ginger) and best of all the dutch Friet Mayonaise were all purchased. There is nothing like it and the taste is divine especially on chips. Not being able to bring this back to Australia, I have three weeks in which to finish it. So lots of chips on the menu then!

Then it was back on route to Waikanae. Such a lovely welcome from David and Marilyn when we arrived. We were shown to a specially prepared area where the van was to be parked and also told a bed was all ready for us inside and we were NOT to sleep in the van that night. After a long chat and of course lots of tea, Marilyn took us for a walk to Waikanae beach. The weather went down hill rapidly and when the rain started all thought of going for a walk went out of the window.

Just before the rain started
  A stop on the way back for a drink with Marilyn's friends Gary and Bruce (several glasses of red wine and nibbles produced) before it was time to head back to David who had been left in charge of bed making and oven lighting.

View from Gary and Bruce's lounge window.

Marilyn had prepared a wonderful Thai green curry, from scratch I might add none of the packet or tinned stuff from the supermarket shelves, and after yet another drink or two... sat down to devour the delicious meal.

More drinks and then coffee before retiring to bed.

All to soon our visit was over. Having another scrumptious meal prepared, cereals, fruit and a cooked breakfast with Gary, Bruce and Kavin joining us (Marilyn is such a great host) and then after Marilyn had cut mine and Ian's hair, ( a brilliant job she did too) we set off for Tawa. Here I was to meet one of my dutch cousins. With mum being the eldest of twelve children my cousins are many but only one have I met before, John, and with him living in Queensland this is another visit I am looking forward to next month. But for the first time I was to meet cousin Johns brother, Tony.

Such a professional haircut, thank you, Marilyn,
 By now the weather had deteriorated even further with torrential rain and wind gusts of 110km/h (checked up on Wellington met office). Along the sea road the wind had whipped up the waves and in a few places had even come over the top.

The sat nav took us right to Tony and Christine's door. The greeting was everything I hoped it would be and we talked about the family and how I actually have more cousins living in New Zealand than I imagined. Looks like we will have to come back some day if only to visit them all.

Some similarity I think. Could be the hair

Several hours later we said our goodbyes. Finding a campsite not far from Tawa we pulled in and battened down the hatches. Still raining heavily, in fact there didn't seem any let up at all. And to make matters worse I went to light the gas to cook dinner and found the gas had run out!!! Good old standby of tinned tuna came to the rescue with a hastily prepared salad, at least we were fed for the night. Good job we are on a powered site 'cos we can use the electric toaster and kettle in the morning!

Tomorrow we spend a day in Wellington with Roger and Pat The Cat's Whiskers. Having finally managed to get a message sent with a phone number, we have arranged to take the van to their place, leave it on the driveway and then all drive to the city in their car. Hope the rain will have stopped by then!


1 comment:

Marilyn McDonald said...

Irene and Ian, It was lovely having you here with us and we are so glad you enjoyed yourselves.

I just want to make your readers aware that the small glasses the three of us are holding are filled with dessert wine and that we had previously all (apart from Ian who was on beer) been consuming large glasses of wine ...

Thank you for the compliment re the dinner - if anyone wants the recipe, look it up online - Donna Hay's Roasted Thai Green Chicken Curry. It is yummy and very easy.

Looking forward to catching up with you on the cut in the UK in May - that's not too long away!

Big hugs to you both, Marilyn and David xxoo

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