Monday, June 03, 2002

It is now Monday eve at the end of our 3 day weekend. Quincy is asleep and Pete is either asleep or faking it in Aidan’s bed to get Aidan down. We have some sleep issues to work through with that boy… Yesterday and today were much better days with a lot of sun, some wind and some rain (and of course some rainbows!). We decided to walk a stretch of the beachfront we (Pete) commute along everyday and ended up walking from Kohimara (??) (the next tiny village) to Mission Beach where we had our brunch, picked up shells on the beach and raked (Aidan) the shells, and played at the playground. And then back again. Pete & Aidan did a thorough exploration of Dingle Dell afterwards while I entertained Quincy at home. We got our first international calls in to our parents. I almost flubbed it with mine thinking of a 5 hour difference – but that is to west coast not east! Sara recommends a website for cool conversion for talking on phones – check it out (use meeting planner feature).

This place truly is very scenic – I think even Pete agrees ;-) Today we headed off to Duder Regional Park that we had read about. It is 50km from downtown – about 50 min they reported. Pete drove at only about 80 instead of the 100k allowed – our car is so wind leaky and rattly that you feel you are going much faster than you are! They have 2 speeds here – 50 in the towns and 100 elsewhere unless posted. They save themselves a lot of speed signs that way I guess. I also heard that you can get a $300 ticket for doing 80 in a 50 zone – extremely easy to do along our stretch of water – there are no traffic lights nor many roads into it at all at places. I missed a ticket Saturday by being boxed in by other cars – and just ahead a guy was pulled over. Phew! Learned my lesson. Today we did see a 70 and an 80 zone. Anyway – Duder is off my maps and I was winging it but we made it. It is a little peninsula that is a bit south and east of here sticking into the Tamaki Strait. You can see something like 12 islands from it. There is a 4+km “farm trail” loop and another 1+km you can tack on at the end to go out to the point. We stopped shy of the point as we already had great views from up high and a nice spot for our picnic. Pete carried “both boys” as we like to say for at least 1km of the walk. I asked Aidan when we were done when he liked best. “the sheep” and then “the cows and sheep”. Lots of both up close and personal. The way the trail goes you end up quite high without feeling like you are doing much climbing. Nice.

Have ants here we discovered today – just like home.

Yesterday I said that we needed to change Quincy. Aidan got excited and said we should use the changing table (there is one although no pad and we have never used it) in the “hello room”. What a great description! There is a small mezzanine above the main living room set up as a study (desk and chair and changing table) and Aidan’s main experience of it has been with either us or him up on it calling down “HELLOOO” to whoever is below.

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