A couple of weeks ago my siblings and I met to remember our Mum and Dad who had both died in the month of May Mum on the 22nd May 5 Years ago and Dad on the 27th May 35 years ago.
My dear dad Guy Walker served his country in the second world war, and often talked of his fun times in Cairo and Italy. He and his friends looked on joining up as a great adventure and this photo of him in his uniform before he left shows some of that.
I don’t think any of us kids realized that he rarely spoke of the bad times and as he was in Egypt and at Cassino in Italy there must of been lots of them. He was a fun Dad liked to get down and play with us kids, had a good sense of humour and liked a social life. He always gardened vegetables and as I was a Daddy’s girl I used to love helping in the garden or with the other jobs he did.We girls had the most years with him as the my brothers were only 13 and 10 when he died very young aged 59 , and left my mum with three grown up daughters and two boys still at home.
My Mum and Dad met after the second world war, she was boarding next door to his family with an aunt. My father was dared by his brothers to go over in his pajamas and dressing gown and say he had heard she needed a man. It was a great joke and he was invited in and sat talking with her and her uncle and aunt of course. here is a picture of them on their first date and then their wedding day the 26 February 1949
It was great to be together as a family and chat about old times and look through old snaps , most of them black and white but moving into colour as the years passed. My Mum lived until she was 86 and never remarried, she often spoke of Dad and the good and not so good times they shared together.
Memories and old photos go together and I do worry that this will be lost in this digital age as so many photos are taken but rarely printed or shared except on social media. Ah well that’s the future What will be will be./ Que sera sera.
Back in February I set off with a cousin on a road trip from Taranaki up to the Waikato, across to the Bay of Plenty, over to Gisborne down to Napier and then home. We had an amazing time. Our first goal was to visit Hobbiton which is the Film set from Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. What an amazing place it was totally worth the entry price and exceeded my expectations. This set was rebuild for the Hobbit movies and this time the Farm owners requested that the Set be built of permanent materials in order for it to become a tourist destination. He worked with Sir Peter Jackson and his studio and it has been a triumph, also an economic success story for the Farm, Matamata and the surrounding area. It employs a large number of locals and draws tourists from around the world. Every detail is carefully crafted the clothes line for example came up to my knees and the clothes were all in proportion.It was a grey drizzly day but as you can see we still got good photos.
From Hobbiton we drove to Tauranga and the following morning we headed over to visit family in Gisborne on the east coast of the North Island. This small city prides itself on being the first city to see the sun. Captain James Cook sailed into the bay in 1769 and as Cook was unable to gain many of the provisions he and his crew needed at the bay he gave it the name Poverty Bay. Now Poverty Bay is one of the more fertile areas of New Zealand and famous for its Chardonnay, fruit, vegetables and avocados, and abundant sunshine although we actually brought the rain from Taranaki with us. We had one fine day travelling over and then it rained. They needed it as it had been very dry but we wanted sun 😦 so not many photos.
After a great time with Family and touring wineries we headed of in the rain to Napier to meet up with my Sisters and Brother in Law for the Napier Art Deco festival. More on that in the next post.
This lovely little lady joined my family on the 12th of January. She is a miniature poodle and I have named her Gigi. At 7 months old it is like having a mischievous toddler around the house and also involves house training oops a few puddles but it’s getting better. She has brought laughter into my house again. I am also getting out for walks every day as she is great motivation. Yesterday was a beautiful summers day so we went to the park. Gigi is full of energy for an hour and then plops down for a wee nap until its time for the next burst. The recycling bin newspaper has taken a few hits bit its relatively easy to clean up. ha Ha she also uses my circular ottoman as part of her race track she is so quick its hard to get her on video as I am busy laughing. Oscar the puddy tat is not so impressed and only comes in at night when she is asleep in her crate. So he lives in the front gardens and Gigi has the back yard. She is actually good with cats unless they run away which Oscar does.Not too worry early days yet. Catch you all later bye
Today I want to wish all my followers Seasons greetings for this festive time. I know that we all have different ways of celebrating and also different faiths but this is the time of the year for me to celebrate Christmas. Being a December baby I have always loved Christmas time, the carols, decorating the house and bringing in the Christmas tree or even putting up the fake one; the family traditions and then joy on peoples faces as they gather with their families and friends.
This year is a little different its been harder somehow to get into the spirit of the season. My decorations are more low key as I have no family visiting this year, I am going to my sister’s for Christmas Lunch then back to my Brother’s for the evening meal.
There have also been so many momentous happenings here in New Zealand with another major earthquake shaking us badly and creating chaos and recently our Prime Minister suddenly resigning,. Internationally Donald Trump in America winning the Presidential race, Brexit in Britain and so many injustices around the world in war zones and terrorism in cities like Paris and just last night Berlin. just to name a few.Each year we ask for Peace but it never happens.
I guess that the best we can do in our small corner of the world is to share love and happiness with those close to us and in our community too. As a country far away from the unrest of the world we are known to be generous and supportive of those in need all over the world as well as in our own backyard. We must all lead by example and show the way so I wish you all
Joy, Peace and Happiness this Christmas and for the coming Year.
Invercargill road trip After a quiet day recovering form our trip to Milford Sound we set of on a round trip to Invercargill capital of the South We stopped on the way to view an old suspension bridge at Clifton then went to visit the Southland Museum and the Bill Richardson Transport World Museum . Both were very good and great to do on a wet miserable day. We saw Tuatara at the Southland Museum and a Burt Munro exhibit then headed to the World transport Museum. This was a great place not only did it have lots of Fords but they also had outstanding wearable art costumes on display and we spent a lot of time there. Lunch in the city and a wee bit of retail therapy before we headed back to Te Anau.
Oops I have been a while getting back to my holiday story but that’s life. 🙂 Our Trip to Milford sound had been planned with great anticipation, and high hopes for a lovely fine day. In reality we must have struck one of the wettest days of May. I have never seen rain like it but with this rain came the most magnificent water falls. All along the valley on the way to Milford Sound The hills were literally covered by a wall of water and the rivers were raging.. Nature at its best.
When we got to Milford we were booked on a cruise of the sounds and this was amazing, as there were just so many waterfalls. Even though it was very wet and windy I was determined to get out in the weather and take photos. This was part of my Bucket list so well rugged up away I went. Hanging on to rails , taking photos with one hand at times and getting the spray on my face and the camera. Please forgive the photos as they are not the best but capture the moment.
It was an exhilarating trip on the boat for me and my son who also took some really good photos with a much better camera. Unfortunately my daughter in law was not feeling too good and she stayed below inside in the warm. It was an amazing day and we were all tired by the time we drove home to Te Anau as it is a two hour drive each way so it was a long day.
Lake Te Anau , the gateway to Fiordland national park was to be our destination for 6 days as we explored the area. We had a lovely day driving from Kaka Point To Te Anau stopping at small towns along the way for coffees and photo opportunities. This was Gore a very nice rural town with a great entrance. Salmon country.
Lake Te Anau is a the largest and deepest lake in Fiordland the town is small and caters to holiday makers and tourists. It is the stepping off point for Milford Sound and for several walking and biking tracks. In summer there would be lots of boats I suspect but the town was bunkering down for winter as some of the restaurants were closed. But we found two excellent ones on recommendations from friends.It was very wet and rained most of the time and one photo shows the lake was so high it had submerged a pier. On a finer day I went for a walk and found these gorgeous toadstools and the colours of autumn.
My family and I enjoyed our stay though as we had fun playing Rummycub, Yahtze and doing jigsaws in between our travels.Next installment with be our adventures on Milford Sound. Bye