To Palmy for three days.

The familiar drive to Palmerston North was not to be. At the north end of Shannon there were Police cars and a diversion was in place!

p

Shannon, population 1506.

I later read there had been a serious accident and I am grateful for multiple routes to Palmerston North, in many places in New Zealand there isn’t always a choice. I asked the guy who was directing the traffic where I was going: “Turn right past the dams” was his response. I’m familiar with this road and was not familiar with any dams. I followed the road for some distance with a huge line of traffic behind me, past the sewage ponds, over the Manawatu River and over the flood gates, maybe this was what he meant by dams.

p2

p3

Over the Manawatu River and the dam????????

Sometime later there was another road to the right so I turned, followed by an ever increasing line of traffic. They all turned too and it’s quite a responsibility being the lead vehicle. This was going to be a success or a dismal failure! It was a minor farming road (complete with tractors and harvesters) that eventually joined another road I knew, so I had made the correct choice to turn 🙂

p1

p4

The convoy coming in the opposite direction 🙂

I had some gift vouchers to spend, went to the supermarket and bought lots of expensive tasty treats I wouldn’t usually buy then to The Warehouse to buy a new radio and a couple of DVDs with the other voucher. I rarely watch TV but find talkback radio at night, especially, amusing!

p6

The welcoming committee ❤

I received an enthusiastic welcome Raewyn, one of the managers at the Palmerston North Holiday Park, she is a lovely lady, and settled in for a lazy day reading and people watching. It was quite warm, 26C, no wind or clouds, and I was reminded I needed a stronger fan but it was bearable. I pulled out the awning, opened the back door and had a nice through breeze.

p20

p21

She was a most attentive mummy duck, sheltering her babies from the sun.

I also had a duck welcoming committee. There are still some ducklings, I was content.

 Later on in the day I had the need to oversee some ducklings who were being chased and taunted by a horrible child, the look on his face was malicious. I understand the draw of chasing ducks for small children but this one was about 10. Later on I saw him with some other children at the play area and, yep, he was a bully. I didn’t feel too sad when he was running up the slide, blocking the smaller kids and fell over and hurt himself. He was also a sooky!

p13p17p18

p10

The flowers looked pretty after the rain . . . . . . .

p14p12

p19

. . . . . .  so did the insects!I

I did absolutely nothing, read, ate, listened to the radio and relaxed, although it was necessary to visit the cafe in the Botanical Gardens, next door for a treat. I also went for a river walk on the only night there was no sunset. Typical!
Not the usual me but it felt good.I’m no spring chicken and sometimes feel my age!! And that’s OK.

p16

p22

A Black-fronted Dotterel, my first ever sighting, though it isn’t a rare bird. They colonised here in the 1950s from Australia.

p11

p7

The toilet block had been painted. Although attractive, I think I preferred the original.

p8

My coffee cup fell off and landed in the green bin, where I usually store my laptop and iPad.I am so lucky they weren’t in there.

One thing that has intrigued since I was a child was the “rocket” just outside Palmerston North which I had gone past hundreds of times and was a landmark for me and my children. I believed that it was something to do with boy scouts, that was my childhood memory. My memory was entirely false, not even close 🙂
p5
The Tiakitahuna Rocket was placed on the corner of SH56 by locals wanting to mark the locality after the the Foxton Branch railway was closed.The original rocket was made of 44 gallon oil drums welded end to end. The rocket was rebuilt about the 1980’s with the assistance of a local brewery and painted bright red. In 2014 it had a makeover to commemorate the 150-year anniversary. It was also”earthquake strengthened”. 🙂

28, 29, 30, 31 January 2017

c4

My next Being Mobile blog will be from Australia!!

A long, long weekend in Palmerston North

It seemed a long time since I had made the 45 minute trip north to my special place, my happy place. Initially I was going for two nights, that’s happened before lol  😉  I had been waiting for the first opportunity since Dasha and I did our four week South Island tour but the weather had not been great or the forecast had been awful and at the last minute it had cleared. Too late . . . . . If Phee wasn’t so timid, he could some too. I would love that.

From the large to the small.

From the large to the small.

Since my first epic adventure last July a lot has changed. The Ducato is set up for a quick escape with everything needed from toiletries, to make up, food and clothing for three days and food staples and easy meals. There is even an electric toothbrush (maybe I’ll add a flosser when I can manage my home one better). Everything but perishables.

14222105_10155318894159863_415987592222843338_n

The loo and shower (which I don’t use).

I have gas for cooking and heating and I need to buy a meter of some sort to know how much gas I have. I wouldn’t like to run out and if I did I could use the camp facilities to cook no problem but heating? I don’t remember it being this cold over night last year; maybe I am getting soft.

These bins are useful, I keep clothing in here permanently.

These bins are useful, I keep clothing in here permanently.

On Thursday night I was one of three camper vans, on Friday night, I was the only one. It seems that more Kiwis are buying caravans, from really big ones with pop out sides down to a little pop top A frame. Camping people are usually very friendly and we often chat, especially the ones who have NZ Motor Caravan Association ‘wings’ on their vehicles. I am member 60600, so there are many of us.

Puss comes and visits, she lives here.

Puss comes and visits, she lives here.

On Friday I did some work and had lots of work phone calls. I’m taking  Min’s acupuncture business phone calls and doing her appointments while she is overseas.

I sleep the other end now so I can see TV

I sleep the other end now so I can see TV

Over the last 1o months I have modified my bed style. Initially I used the full two person bed but this was awkward in getting to the loo, so I downsized to a smaller version (new sheets required). I also had the cushions refilled to make them more comfortable and refigured them to be various widths. Then I bought a single (expensive) memory foam topper and now have a very comfortable (slightly bigger than) single bed. I used to be quite fussy about making the bed too, fitted bottom sheets and neatly made. Now in winter I used my sleeping bag for the bottom sheet, it’s warmer and takes me 5 minutes to make and unmake the bed. When I win Lotto I will have a camper van with a bed that comes down from up in the ceiling and that can be kept made. I can’t see the point in having a permanent bed at the back, I would rather have space to relax in.

I was interested to see what changes there were in the Esplanade. Last time I was here, in March, it was autumn but very warm. Now it was almost winter (depending on whether you subscribe to the equinoctial seasonal theory, which I do) and cold but calm and sunny. Perfect weather for a long, long weekend.

Spring is coming!

Spring is coming!

The leaves where falling on the many deciduous trees though the best colour shows had passed. Still, it was pretty. I feel for the managers who spend a lot of time raking and removing them. I seem to manage to get them stuck on the bottom of my shoes. The weather conditions had been perfect for fungi. The roses were well past their best but some were still flowering and jonquils were showing too. I though mine were late this year until I discovered I had been mowing them. Oops!! The camellias and rhododendrons were in flower, early I am sure. There is always plenty of colour at the Esplanade.

Sunset if often spectacular.

Sunset if often spectacular.

There were changes happening along the river bank last time. The Manawatu River has had some big flood episodes in the past and despite the big stop banks protecting the housing, the damage to the river banks with erosion was considerable. I remember coming over the Fitzherbert Bridge the day after the 2o02 floods and the water was close to the under side of the bridge. That was the flood that covered miles and miles of the coast and brought down, amongst other things, thousand of onions to my local beach.

The duck pond, busy during duck shooting season.

The duck pond, busy during duck shooting season.

They had roped off a large section of the river walk in March and were building rock walls to contain the river. Many of the lovely trees that the birds liked to feed on had been chopped back and I was pleased to see some had re-sprouted. Willows are hardy. I have a favourite tree and am happy it had been pruned but not removed.

14316843_10155318868904863_7722264295393334613_n

The river walk.

I had some lovely walks, there is always plenty of people, dogs, cyclists and occasionally horses. It is well used and valued by the locals and by visitors.

And like anywhere I stay, there is always housework to do!

14292250_10155318900664863_1305466284643728540_n

Emptying the toilet 🙂

22 August 2016

c4