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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 5 March 2023

Going back in time.

 5th March

 I haven't mentioned the sandflies just recently, and to be fair, the North Island has very few, well in this part of the island anyway. But yesterday one found Ian, got him on the ankle, he is now suffering with that incessant itch! I'm afraid I wasn't very sympathetic until I realised that with the door open several of those small black pests were heading my way. Out came the anti sandfly spray, gosh it smells awful, the van sprayed with fly spray and all windows and doors stayed shut. 

Oh, dear, a horrible realisation when I went to get dressed, I had run out of undies. Used the last pair of knicks yesterday, blast now what to do. Nothing for it but to 'go commando', (yuk) and find a launderette.

It was to Masterton we went. Another liquid launderette found with plenty of machines and dryers but by golly it was busy. The small $4 ones were all in use so we had to use the larger $5 ones instead. The same applied to the driers so ended up spending 10 dollars instead of the usually 8. But with the washing all done time to head to Mt Bruce.

The weather wasn't brilliant, very overcast with intermittent rain. By the time we arrived part of the afternoon had all but gone, what we did spy on the way was the Pioneer Heritage Museum in Kiriwhakapapa. The road leading to it looked to be someone's private drive, grass was growing in the middle and at first wasn't sure if we should take. As we rounded a corner the first thing noticed was a red phone box followed by several old petrol pumps, yep, we knew we had arrived.


A small fee of $5 each for entry and OMG, you open the only door to the front of the building and immediately you are transported to the late19th, early 20th century. We couldn't believe it, all looked to be like a jumble sale but it was themed and everything had a place. This place was like a tardis, room after room of artefacts, vehicles and farm machinery, everything was covered in a fine layer of dust and cobwebs hung from the ceiling but don't be put off, this somehow added to the unique atmosphere of the museum.

 We met the owner, Henry Christensen who told us that a lot of the antiques had been restored by himself. He had in his possession the first ever telephone exchange which opened in Auckland 1881, and he even gave a demonstration. 

We saw working the old washing machines that I expect our grannies would have used and even how cows were milked back in the day. 

bottom left are dishwashers!

It was amazing what this man had collected, so please please, if ever heading up SH2 towards Mt Bruce, go in, spend an hour and enjoy the nostalgic times. 

With no sun we decided to go into a proper site to keep the batteries charged. We chose Eketahuna Motor camp ground and as NZMCA members we were entitled to a discount. so instead of the $30 with power, we only had to pay $20. This is a lovely small site with one downfall, the road noise is a bit invasive.

Tomorrow we drive back along the highway to Pukaha Wildlife centre. Good walks are to be had here as well as plenty of wildlife. I think I will be in my element!

And these made us laugh.


1 comment:

Marilyn, nb Waka Huia said...

I was going to suggest that you called in at that museum but couldn't quite remember where it was. I'm so glad you found it. It's amazing, isn't it? It reminded me of the one that used to be at Claydon.


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