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she sells sea shells on the sea shore

sunny

Long time no speak, have been very busy being not busy and so somehow I have fallen behind again.

I arrived in Raglan on Wednesday last week safe and sound. I met Nashy at the bus stop in Hamilton which was cool. I got off the bus at hers before Colin came round and picked us both up and took us to Tongue and Groove where we met Mike and Reba. Was a really nice sunny day and Tongue and Groove is so nice, the curly fries are amazing. So that was all fab. Then once we dropped Nashy off back home I went back to 10 Tahuna Road where I'm now staying avec Colin. The house is really cool, just because of the people who are in it. Theres Alex - its his cousin who owns the house - who spends half his time studying up in Auckland and comes back down for surf, I'm told hes a very good surfer. Cam is the same, hes studying in Auckland, some environmental course and so he splits his time, hes really cool and chatty. Phil is German although hes lived in N.Z for 2 years now so has a very strange kiwi/German accent. Hes working on a big thesis and has bits of paper all over the place. Wes I haven't seen much of but he's British and a surfer. Not sure what hes doing over here other than surfing, but hes been away at a music festival the last few days and isn't always at the house. Debs has been staying for the last few nights but recently moved to another friends house while she finds her own. Shes really lovely and made pumpkin soup from scratch one night she stayed which was soo yummy. She is one of the surf instructors full time at the beach too. Mike lives in the garage (hes just made it into his own house) and hes best friends with Colin, they're both from Long Beach, California. Reba occasionally comes to stay, I've mentioned her before, shes staying at the lodge otherwise. And at the moment theres Rommy, whos German and is staying with Alex. So there we go, I have now explained all of the charecters in my story so I don't have to keep explaning as I go!

On Thursday Mikes mum arrived so Colin went for breakfast with her and Mike while I took his car to go visit Nashy at her house and chilled out for a bit. Then Colin and me went over to Bridal Veil falls just outside Raglan. It was reallly scary standing on the platform over looking the 55m drop, the view from the bottom of the waterfall was significantly better as far as I was concerned. It was really pretty with the rock gorged away in stripes. We were debating how the rock got shaped like that because it was really stripey but we just guessed it was some form of glacier... Once we headed back to Tahuna we went out for ice cream with Mike and Reba to the takeaway on the corner of our road and then went back to the house, or the garage, and chilled out in the hammock which was cool. Then went out for amazing fish and chips (my first fish and chips since being away!) and although it didn't have chippy brown sauce on it and wasn't as greasy in that lovely Scottish way, it was pretty damn good. We then headed up to the lodge as Colin was on night duty up there (basically just watching over things and giving people change and helping out). I went back over to see Nashy and watched ER with her before Amy got home and then went back over to catch the end of a poker game and had a quick lesson, although most of it went over my head.

On Friday Colin and me went on this crazy little dirt road to get to a beach round the otherside of the Karioi. We stopped off at Blood Gorge or something or other and again I had to stand on a platform over looking a big drop, but the view was really nice as it was green and lovely and then looked out onto the ocean and was a gorgeous hot day. We drove a bit further round and got to the beach where it was pretty quiet, not surprising considering the road you have to use to get to it! Colin brought his board (one of his 3, I'm still learning why he needs 3, infact he wants to buy a fourth which is just crazy) but when we got there most people were getting out and he used a whole load of surfy terms to explain why this was but that went over my head too, haha. Nah I'm slowly learning what all these words mean so its not like talking in another language every time we go to the beach! So anyway, we just lay in the lovely sun which is still so hot. After we drove home we headed up to the lodge again as Colin was 'working' and chilled out with Reba, Peter (Swedish), Ollie (British, friends with Nash) and Liam (British, friends with Ollie) which was cool. Once Mike turned up and it hit 11 so Colin could leave, we headed to a barn party just down the road. It was a bit like Cammys old parties except with a proper DJ and lots of hippies everywhere. I got introduced to just about the whole of Raglan and have given up remembering most peoples names now, bar the essentials! Met a very drunk and pretty Nashy who had her hair down and looked very nice. We were there til late and then Colin drove Amy and Nash home before we headed back to Tahuna.

Saturday was the day Lynsey arrived in Raggers. Colin went out for a surf at Manu Bay with some of the guys and I nabbed the car again to go over to Nashs to visit her and Lynsey. We all hung out for a while and then I can't remember what else I did because I didn't write it down in my diary, haha. I would guess though that me and Colin went to the bakery for some food because I do seem to spend half of my life in the bakery with him because he loves it and it is actually really good. That evening we went to the Yot Club, which is the only place to be in Raglan at night. A band called Sola Rosa were playing and because we were with the whole Tahuna household plus Zennor and his girlfriend Sophie (Zennor is one of N.Zs top surfers, hes been pointed out to me in the many surf magazines kicking about in the living room, so I feel cool cos I know him) Alex managed to get us discounted tickets, haha. It was a really really cool night and I haven't had so much fun and been so happy for ages. Lots and lots of dancing to the very good music until it was late and we all headed home for an after party. We had candles lit in the living room and had lots more dancing until we were all tired and it was very late/early.

On Sunday we helped Mike and his mum get Mikes boat into the water at Lorenzen Bay. This involved meeting Mona, the cutest little kitten in THE WORLD. Colins known her since she was very very little and he loves cats and so she loves him and when he picked her up she just stretched out in his hand and kind of hung of his hand, shes such a poser. Shes so soft and tiny and cute though, I have actually fallen in love with her and am trying to convince Colin to join me in stealing her one night. Anyway, we chatted to Sarah, who owns Mona, and Colin showed me their cool garden behind the house (while Mona followed us meowing and pouncing on things and just generally being gorgeous) before Mike turned up and was ready to go. They rolled the boat down the hill and into the water and all was merry. Mike and his mum were going over to JDs to stay at his ranch over there, I'm pressuming its easier to get to by boat. We had to drive Mikes car back to the house though, and Colin asked if I would like to drive it and I said no because he has a rather nice Subaru and I really did not want to put myself in the position of denting it, haha. So I drove the blueberry back instead. Colin then grabbed his board and we went to Manu Bay and he had a surf, which was actually the first time I saw him surf, needless to say hes pretty good, haha. It was cool watching him just get this wave all the way along for ages, and he does it in this really chilled out easy peasy kind of way that just makes it look so much fun. After all that we got curly fries at T&G before going up to the lodge to see Lynsey, Nash, Bess, Amy, Betsy etc and chilled out there for the evening.

On Monday we went down to the bay around the corner (a different bay, there are rather a lot of them kicking about round here) to help Mike get the boat out of the water. I sat and chatted to his mum while Mike, Colin and Cam sorted everything out. Mike doesn't have a tow and so instead had two very tiny wheels which are meant to be used for canoes and kayaks and put these under the boat. He then got Cam to sit on the back of his car and hold the boat while he drove around the corner to the house. It was so very funny, using Cam as a human tow. Once we got back Mike cleaned down the engine with the hose and the back window on Colins car which I was very pleased about as it was so filthy from going on that dirt track that you could hardly see out the back. Its still pretty dirty because all the grime is just stuck to it and needs scrubing, haha. That evening we went to the pub for some burgers which were sooo good before going for a walk in the moonlight (the moons been uber bright these last few nights) along Lorenzen Bay, which was very muddy and sandy and finally finished off my slowly dying flip flops.

Tuesday morning we headed into town and got breakfast at Aqua Velvet (another cafe opposite T&G). I got homemade beans on toast which were soo good and a pot of tea. We then went to the surf shop and while Colin drooled over boards I got myself a new pair of jandals, as they call them here. They are uber comfy. After all that we hit the beach with Lynsey, Nash and Reba. Reba went out far with Colin and he gave her a few pointers while Nashy went out pretty far too and did some v good surfing and me and Lynsey paddled in the shallow end. Haha, no Lynsey was out of practice so we chilled just at the shore, me jumping in the very big waves and swimming about and Lynsey catching a load of them too. She offered me her board for a bit and so I gave it a shot. First we had to figure what leg to put the leash thing on, and then I lay on the board... and rolled off the otherside, it was very funny. So once I managed to actually lie on the board still I paddled and bit for the wave and then I went shooting forwards and the board stayed backwards and that didn't work either. But after a good few shots I actually paddled and caught a wave and then stood up, whoo! Was very cool, did it a couple times and then gave Lynz her board back. It was a really nice fun morning. We went back to town and Colin dropped us all off to get some fish and chips while he went over to see JD breifly. Once all that was done we met Amy and Colin came back and we headed to the pub for a drink. Then drove Reba and Lynsey back to the lodge and on the way back saw a LIVE possom! I'd been harking on about wanting to see one all week and Colin kept pointing out the dead ones on the side of the road (of which there are many) which wasn't very nice, and then finally one ran out infront of us! It was like a racoon with a big bushy tail except brown, and it kind of jumped when it ran and was really cute. Luckily it just missed Colins wheels. So I was very content after that. Once home we chilled out with Debs, Cam and Rommy in the living room, just listening to some tunes.

Wednesday Colin dropped me at the beach while he went in search of some good waves. I had a nice chill out on the beach listening to music until he turned up again having found none on any of the points. It was a really gorgeous blue sky day. I went in the sea and had a swim around after watching Colin surf further out for a bit. Reba turned up too and we chilled. Some guy who was friends with Zennor stole Zennors board while he was busy stretching and was hiding it behind us, once Zennor realised his board was gone he was looking about all over the place while we were all teeheeing away at him. They both then headed out to surf with Colin who was about to come out after surfing for atleast an hour already but went back to join them. Once we got back to Tahuna we fell asleep and had a nap for probably about 2 hours, haha. Woke up just in time for Colin to go to work at the lodge. We took a whole load of food up too and Team Reba, Colin and me made sausages (Colin on the BBQ), pasta and sauce (me in upstairs kitchen) and salad and brownies (Reba in the downstairs kitchen). It was a realllly good meal and a nice night.

Thursday I drove Reba and me to Hamilton for a touch of shopping, only a touch. We both got a pair of jeans and then went and did a bit of food shopping. Reba is super cook, as is Mike, and so she needed supplies for some corgette bread she was going to make. We both tried to get a bottle of red wine but both got turned down. I didn't even think about ID until she asked and I remembered it was in Colins wallet. She wouldn't accept Rebas health card either since shed lost her driving license so we were both left feeling a bit silly. Over here you always get IDd in the pubs, instead of challenge 21 its challenge 30, which is crazy. Anyway, once we got home we chilled at Tahuna before going out to Salt Rock (another cafe) to see Smokey (another person who visits the house) and Wes play at the open mic. They were called Smokey and the Weasel. They were pretty good, and there was a whole load of us there, I had a chat to Zennor who said he thought Nash was a really cool girl (I was sitting there like, wait til I tell Nashy that, she'll be chuffed) and that was fun. I got really rather drunk coutesy of 3 glasses of red (I'd eaten loads so not sure why) and just had a very nice time. This amazing woman sang after they played too, she sounded like a mermaid, soo good. Kind of like folk singing, with such a flawless voice, some poeple had been chatting during most other acts but when she started singing the whole place fell quiet, was crazy. Walking back to the car Reba and Colin were doing Irish kicks in the air which was funny. Once we got home I had the munchies realllly bad due to my drunkeness and so Team Reba, Colin and me made fried egg, cheese and tomato on toast which was just so amazing. Oh and then a bowl of cereal too, haha.

Yesterday was a very lazy day, was a bit cloudy and so Colin and me just read for hours and I finished my book. It was actually a really rubbish book and I was glad to finish it. Mike and his mum got back from their road trip (I forgot to mention that, they left on Monday or something and went South a bit) and so we joined them for some wine, bread, crackers and cheese which was nice. Went up to the lodge again for Colin working. I met Nashy up there and we went into town for some pizza and chips which we ate back at hers while watching two funny programmes on telly. Stayed there until about 10 before going back to the lodge. I hate driving along the road to the lodge because its very windy and dark and scary. Then I had to walk up the drive on my own and that was even more scary. Luckily my new phone has a torch on the front which is a life saver! I went online breifly to check mail and then chilled with Mike, Reba and Colin. Then almost the whole of Tahuna household turned up and we had some beer and banter. Got back to the house about 12ish and Cam chatted about politics and books to Colin and me until about 1am.

So today I had a lovely call from my parents and have just come on here. Colins off with Mike and his mum to JDs again to help build a jacuzzi so I'm off to the beach even though the weather isn't all that great. I want to stay on top of this blog a bit more, so hopefully will write soon, doing week loads takes ages! Colin and me are hopefully going on a road trip soon though, up North. Maybe with Mike and Reba, and maybe with Justin, Colin and Mikes friend from the states whos been in Africa for the last few months. Colin doesn't want to be away when he arrives so we just need to figure around that, I will keep you all posted.

For now much love and adios,

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Posted by lil0liz 14:47 Archived in New Zealand

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Hi Lizzie
Just caught up again with your entries from New Zealand. As we hoped, you sound as though you're having a better time with friendly company and life has become sweeter!

Once again it's good to be reminded that warm sunny weather still exists. Easter has just passed with snow, sleet, bitter cold winds and rain. Doesn't that just make you feel so glad to be where you are!

You reinforce what so many say about NZ - its dreamy relaxed lifestyle - so very laid back - but then you are in the world of surfing - make the most of it and enjoy! Will you manage to take up the challenge and realise the wonder of standing on a surfboard we wonder - even if only for a second or two?

As I read through your diary a familiar pattern to that of university life is brought to mind - friends, eating, drinking and generally cruising through the days - well, that's how it has come across from Matthew! To be fair, though a bit of work is slotted in at times! So even though the sun and sand will be missing next September some experiences will hopefully be repeated!

Hope NZ continues to be good - is Sydney next?

Keep going - and keep updating!

Stay safe and take care
love
Vicki
xxxx

by VickiF

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