New Zealand Travel

Yesterday I arrived in Wellington via Auckland.  Safe and sound.  This is home.arrived-018

I was collected by my sons and we all gathered for a bakery lunch.  We feasted on steak and cheese pies,  deep fried lasagne squares, filled rolls and sausage rolls, doughnuts with cream and custard squares. Not necessarily in that order. All freshly baked and just fantastic. custard-square-003

After a wee lie down we glammed up and went out to a very big Christmas Bash at St James theatre down in Courtney Place. Lots of champagne, hugs and meeting up with old friends. And now after waking up nice and early to the roar of lions and the polite remember-me cough of a big dog in the backyard,  after attending to my obligatory headache, making a cup of tea and pulling a cardi over my nightie, after climbing back into bed with my computer, we are ready to begin our morning weblog posts again.

When we were tiredly tottering up the steps to my son’s house in the dead of night last night, then standing at the door waving the babysitters goodbye, I deeply inhaled the scent of New Zealand. While listening to the snuffles and creaks of the new baby. arrived-009

Every country has a particular scent. New Zealand is a small country in mass but it has a protruding backbone of high mountains and an extensive coastline.  New Zealand has the tenth longest consecutive coastline in the world. 14,000 kilometres, (or 8,700 miles)  of mostly rugged coastline along its small islands.  It is about the size of California but with a tiny population of around four million people and completely surrounded by sea.  It borders the more rambunctious Tasman  Sea and the gentle Pacific Ocean so the scent of New Zealand is hugely influenced by the sea, open space and trees. There is a hint of salt, beaches, pine and hibiscus even when you cannot see a flower.

Our islands stand in the way of massive currents driven by the trade winds through the South Pacific and across the Tasman Sea  that result in a constant tide of  warm waters crashing up onto the coastline with a subtropical climate in tow.   Because we are so tiny and these winds that drive the sea up to our coast  divide and meet again on the other side of  New Zealand we are blessed with a wonderful continuous re-freshening of the air by the sea.

New Zealand smells good.

Good morning. Wellington is the capitol of New Zealand and is at the bottom of the North Island. I will be here for a week or so. It is endlessly buffeted by these winds.  I have always said that you know a Wellingtonian by the way their heads and shoulders are bent slightly forward all the time, their chins down, leaning into a wind, walking fast even on those few days when there is no wind. People in Wellington do not stroll about, they stride out at speed. But my youngest son lives in a little valley very close to the Wellington Zoo. We are able to duck our heads down below the winds here, and today I shall go out and sit on the steps in the deck, with my cup of tea, camera and paper and pen and just enjoy that wondrous scent of a clean New Zealand, and listen to the lions.  As our only native mammals are a bat and a tiny fat pig called a kunekune, you can imagine  how incongruous that sentence really is.

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Have a lovely day.

celi

75 Comments on “New Zealand Travel

  1. You must be so thrilled to finally be there! I don’t know that I’d like those winds. I happen to like strolling. Have a great day Celi!

  2. Yea! I missed you! So glad you’re in safe. Thank you for the scent of New Zealand. I would love to wake to the distant roar of lions, a beautiful baby, and tiny, fat pig. Looking forward to photos – take lots!

  3. Welcome home! Lions!! OMG!
    It’s funny – the first thing I notice – whenever I’ve been away and am back – is the way NZ smells – clean, fresh, newly rinsed and air dried. And our colours are fresh and bright. Have a wonderful time in my favourite city XO

  4. So glad you arrived safe and sound. We’re so excited for your descriptions and stories! I would love to visit there someday, so you are a gateway, you know.

  5. Beautiful! Thank you for the lesson in geography! And for explaining how you awoke to the roar of a lion 😉

    So glad you woke up & posted your blog! It’s already 3PM Saturday by me. But wait – it must already be tomorrow by you – ???

    Oh my – jet lag has me SO confused.

  6. New Zealanders sound like Cornishj trees bend by the wind! That is one gorgeous baby,

    Pep talk: if you continue to eat like that in NZ neither your farmy friends nor we will recognise you when you get home. (I’m smug, as I lost 2 kilos in hospital)

  7. Glad to read you’ve made it, Celi, and that Grandbaby of yours is about as cute as could be. I never made it to New Zealand. I know, my bad. I do know about the current, though. I saw “Finding Nemo.” 🙂

  8. I used to live near to the Cleveland, Ohio Zoo, and could hear the lions on occasion there. Ireland, this time of year, smells of turf fires when the misty cold hangs low over the town, making glowing orbs out of the Christmas lights strung across the Main Street.

    Happy landings 🙂

  9. So glad you’re back with us! What a beautiful baby. I love that little bit of drool. Is he/she wondering who you are? Such a quizzical look! Enjoy, enjoy. I’m looking forward to learning about and seeing New Zealand through your eyes and words.

  10. this is so exciting and i can’t wait to see more! i had a friend that lived in new zealand for several years.

  11. Ourlittleacres mentioned that she couldn’t take the wind, well I’m used to wind, but I think that flight might do some damage! The things we will suffer to get home again…

    So glad you arrived safely, Celi, and I can hardly wait for more! ~Lynda

  12. cannot reach you by e mail will not send yuk so i am trying this–wondering about success of skirt

  13. Hello grandmother, welcome to our side of the world, the Windy City, animals over whom you have no control and a gorgeous and inquisitive bub 🙂 ! Have a wonderful time! Living in the Highlands here, I know what you mean about the smell of the air!

  14. lol. I never thought of deep fried, crumb lasagna toppers to be a particularly New Zealand thing. I guess you don’t appreciate them until they’re gone.

  15. Hurrah for air transport….there you are !! I love the description of the air…..enjoy every
    moment, breathe it all in…slow down and enjoy !!

  16. I’ve never been to New Zealand though it’s just a short trip across the ditch (as they say)…and hadn’t thought about the smell. Brings me back to my days in Fiji. Funny how you have the tropical mixed in with the oh so cold and windy…one day I’ll get there 🙂
    Sounds like a lovely family time for you c x

  17. Glad you are having such a great time – wonderful! Oh New Zealand – I have only been there once and absolutely loved it.

  18. Welcome home Celi, and I love what you say about the smell of NZ. It’s so true, and I’ve forgotten to notice it because it is so familiar. Yesterday was the best and finest day we’ve had since the storms and tornado and today is a true summer day with a light breeze (here in Auckland). How refreshing for you to be here.

  19. Do you think you could fit a fat little kunekune in the silver suitcase? I would gladly drive down from Wi. to pick him up when you get home.

  20. Thankful the Tornado did not ruin your trip our friends live a few meters away they said. Love how you describe your country the smells can’t wait to go one day

  21. Never got to Wellington, looking forward to learning more. Enjoy. Laura

  22. Hello Celi, I’m glad you are safe and sound in your enchanted homeland! Would love to see a picture of one of those little fat pigs.

  23. Good to know you’re here. You must have brought the fins weather with you… I spent it on a deserted beach in the Bay of Islands… asd an immigrant I can say this country is bliss… good that you’re enpying it too

  24. You must be so at peace inhaling the scent of home. I love that feeling. I forgot to mention in the CA post – but both babies are just down right adorable! Glad you arrived safely and are already off to some fun. 🙂

  25. So glad you made it safely. Enjoy your homeland and your family. And thanks for taking us with you.

  26. How exciting – you’re really there! I can’t wait to see how your trip unfolds. It seems to have gotten off to a roaring start. The food alone sounded like it was worth the trip.

  27. Wait, back up… “deep fried lasagne squares”?????? What???? Whoa! I think I must go to NZ! Mmmm… oh share more, please!! (and safe travels)

  28. I caught my breath .. looking at the photograph of Baby Precious Adorable. The Good Husband has been nagging me – anything from Celi yet. Over breakfast I read the post out loud. Now we are happy to unpack our virtual valise, breath the New Zealand perfumed air and listen to the cough of lions. V.

  29. A wonderful introduction to your country – and your newest grandchild of course!
    Christine

  30. Welcome Home Celi. There is always something special about coming back to this place – even if you have only been gone a week, let alone an absolute age! Have the loveliest time.
    Cheers Sarah : o )

  31. I’m not sure which is sweeter, the pic of your new grandbaby or the ‘vanilla slice’, as they are called in Aus. As far as I know deep fried lasagne squares haven’t made it across the Tasman. No better smell than home… whenever we head to our house up north, there is a olfactory border, after which the air smells like home, and then another when we cross the threshold into our house. There’s nothing like it 🙂

  32. Glad you made it safe and sound. The new grandbaby is precious, and I really enjoyed hearing about New Zealand. No place smells as good as home. 🙂

  33. I am so happy for you being in NZ again! I hope you have a marvelous trip and that when you return home it is with a full heart and a joyful one for the future!

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