Monday, 26 November 2018

Fishing at Last

About three weeks ago, a lovely lady we've met here at Fairway Bay Marina invited us out on her yacht for a day's fishing. How could we say anything but, "Yes, please!"

The next fine day, we were off ...

Our friend Sue lives on her yacht with Oscar, her best buddythat's him sitting right beside her. 

We had a fabulous day. There was hardly any wind, so we didn't do any 'sailing' as such. I think Sue chose a really calm day in case we were poor sailors.

Fish! A lot of the ones we caught were too small and had to be thrown back, but we managed to get some edible sizes as well.

And then there was this shag. It tried to catch the fish as we were pulling them up, and if we threw one back, we had to make sure it was on the other side of the yacht, or Mr Shag here would eat it for lunch! Yes, he got the first one before we caught on to his cunning plan. 

When we tried to move on, he followed. A persistent pest.

Here's Oscar teaching Dave how to steer the yacht.

Looking back towards Gulf Harbour.

Oscar would go nuts whenever someone caught a fish ... so excited, barking and snapping at the fish. He was really quite funny ... but Sue banished him to below deck for a while.

Our sea dog ... Lucy's first time out on the water. She was fine, as long as we didn't get out of sight.

The final tally: one tarahiki and about four snapper. Enough for a few meals.

Back in the marina ... this is the lovely Stella Maris that we went on.

Thanks, Sue, for a memorable day!

The following day I was very unwell and went from bad to worse over the following days. I must have picked up a bug. As I'm typing this, I've just yesterday finished my antibiotics and still not 100%. It's been a long struggle with some sort of chest infection, but now I'm improving slowly each day. Hence such a long time between this fishing day and getting the photos on here to show you. We're planning another trip ... hopefully next week, or before we know it, Christmas will be here! 

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Friday, 19 October 2018

Dolphins in the Marina!

On a sunny afternoon recently at Fairway Bay Marina, I was chatting to one of our neighbours when I noticed some fins in the water ... dolphins! They swam up and down for several hours, no doubt feasting on the fish that are prevalent in the water here. I guess the "No Fishing" signs do not apply to them! There was about six of them altogether ... some saw a couple of younger ones in the group.

Notice the empty green grassy patch over the other side, currently devoid of people ....

 This is right opposite Stella, the boat closest to where we're parked in the marina.

 Alan and Karen live on the Joan Maree ... enjoying their visitors.

It wasn't long before the word was out and people arrived from everywhere. This is the previously empty green spot in the earlier photo.

 People just wanted to be out amongst them, and it was lovely to see no one bothering the dolphins or trying to touch them.

A couple of girls with their dog on our side of the water ...

The dolphins hung around and were still there the next morning. Although not common, apparently dolphinsand even an orcahave been seen in the marina before.

Lucy enjoyed a quick play with this visitor before he left with his people.

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Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Orewa Beach

We've found a lovely c3 church in Orewa and one Sunday, after the service, we stopped at the Orewa Beach on our way home. It was a miserable dayovercast and greybut still a beautiful beach.

In spite of the weather, there were surfers out not too far off shore. 

There didn't seem to be many waves ....

 A new surfer getting some tips.

And others just out for a walk, rugged up against the cold and wind. 

Back "home" at Fairway Bay Marina, the palm trees up on the hill give a clear picture of the weather we were experiencing that day.

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Sunday, 30 September 2018

A Sunday Walk

Although we went to Taranaki for our gransdson's fifth birthday, we've returned to Fairway Bay Marina. We came for one night back in July and ended staying .... Apologies for infrequent blog posts since then. With not travelling and 'sightseeing' so much, there didn't seem to be so much to tell you. But now we're settling in here for I don't know how long, and we're hoping to do a few short trips here and there around this area.

Sitting up on our bed gives Lucy a great view of what's going on outside the rig. The boat you can see is Stella. She belongs to Grant, the guy who owns Yogi's Bar and Eatery nearby.

One Sunday, we decided to go for a walk around to the Gulf Harbour Marina. We're actually in the Fairway Bay Marina, which is towards the east of Gulf Harbour. You might be able to see a path to the left of the photo near Lucy's eyebrow ... that's where we'll be walking ... along that top white stripe and to the leftwest. (The lower white strip is part of Stella's railing.)

To get to the other side, we have to walk over towards Yogi's (east/right), along the road (Pinecrest Drive) for a short way, then into the bush onto the other side of the marina.

Here we're in the bush, walking along the track, looking across at Yogi's Bar. That's the black-roofed building and the area directly this side of it. The red roof is just a roof ... there were plans at one stage for there to be a regular market with stalls in this area, but although it's advertises as such, apparently it didn't work out. So, no market. Shameit would have been fun!

  The track gets quite muddy after it's been raining, but we still managed to navigate our way along.

Looking back at Yogis.

  Further along, looking back at Stella. You can see our rig just beyond the electric gate (at the end of the ramp). The gates are all locked for security reasons and give access to the boats. By now, we've come out of the bush and are walking along the path mentioned earlier, shown in the first two photos.

 A little further on, looking back at Stella. 

 And then directly out at the marina. At this stage we've left Fairway Bay Marina, and we're now looking at boats in the Gulf Harbour Marina. The cut-off point is just this side of Stella.

Looking back at the path we've just walked along.

  And forward ... walking around the side of some apartments in the Gulf Harbour Marina area.

Gulf Harbour apartments.

Past the apartments, we crossed over the road to arrive at a small block of shops. It's really just a small grocery store and a cafesome real estate offices as well. I can't remember much else. You can walk around right beside the waterit's restful and pretty. 

We stopped at Cherry Cafe for a coffeethose 'twin towers' are a bit of a landmark in Gulf Harbour.

We returned the same way we'd come. After walking back along the road and entering the Fairway Bay Marina land, there were a couple of pukekos off to the left of the path. They weren't bothered in the least by my presence; they were more interested in each other. 

Love them or hate them, they really do have beautiful colouring.

As we head back 'home' towards Yogi's, there's a small beach area off to the right and also a picnic table and chairs under that beautiful old tree.

Directly ahead is The Kitchen Door. Sean bakes a variety of goods (the smell is delicious when you walk past!) including British-style pasties and pork pies—and yes, we've sampled them; the pasties are delicious, and the cold pork pies are different to any pies I've eaten before. I'm sure they're something ex-pat Brits would be keen to get their hands on. Sean sends out UK Food Parcelsmaybe that's the bulk of his business as there's not a lot of foot traffic past here. Well, not at this time of year, anyway! You can check out The Kitchen Door and their goodies online here.

This beach is crushed shells and man-made. However, it's nice to actually have any kind of beach so close, although there's no swimming allowed here in the marina. Maybe we'll be able to paddle in the summer! 

Lucy found a friend.

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