Just a short notice: we spent last night in Hokianga, met up with Alex (the wonderful guy whom we met in Whangaroa hiking the hill), had him over for dinner last night and he took us for a drive to the Kauri trees today. What a lovely time we had. The coolest thing: Alex is musician, plays Violin, Bratsche, Guitar AND trumpet. He has a little trumpet in a small suitcase that he carries with him most of the time. This was our welcoming and farewell signal. When he was at the pier yesterday ready to be picked up by Dinghy he played the trumpet, on our boat last night he played a song AND, best of all, today as we left Hokianga harbor he stood at the edge at the cliff and played a farewell for us. I will write more soon. Now we're on our way south. Unfortunately there will be two bad weather days next week which causes us not being able to stop in New Plymouth. SO, against our original plan, we're now on our direct way south, to Picton in the Marlborough Sounds on the Northern Island.
So long, we're on our way for the next 2,5-3 days. My memory of this experience here with a wonderful person we met just being out and who had so many stories and knowledge about New Zealand to share will be with me.
While I should be in the mood for christmas I am in the happy mood of nature exploring and just loving life -and New Zealand. No matter where we go and anchor in remote places, there is always a hiking trail. On islands, in bays everywhere. Two days ago we started to go north from the Bay of Islands, stayed over night at a wonderful island (Cavalli islands, where the „Rainbow warrior", a ship from Greenpeace has been sunk to make a diving attraction in very cold water) and ended up in one of the bays in the water arm which leads to Whangaroa. Such a beautiful area - and great hiking. Today our goal was the top of the mountain here, which looks like a head. The last 50m of hight have to be climbed up along a chain - at an inclination of 80° and only some small rocks to step on. We all made it and the view was absolutely stunning. What was most enjoyable was that during our way up a guy, Alex, played his trumpet on the very top (he had already played it in the morning and it sounded great with all the echo here). We met him on top and then later down at the cabin that can be rented - we ende up being given 2 fresh Red Snappers, which we had for dinner. We just keep meeting the most lovely people! All four of us just enjoy our time, with daily sailing (except for today) and hiking and swimming (Patrick and I). Patrick and I even went snorkeling yesterday, despite the water being really cold there (16-17 degrees centigrade)…
Merry christmas to you all. We already had a wonderful christmas evening here with „Plätzchen" (cookies) and duck.