Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Odds n' ends

Besides all the boat work, road trips, and company, we have also spent some time sailing in the Bay of Islands. Jordan attempted to collect some of the many scallops in the New Zealand waters when diving, but alas, all he found were empty shells. Wrong spot apparently. Scallop season closed at the end of April so no second chances for us. But fishing has been great with many tasty snappers caught.

At a sailors' swap meet we were able to sell our old outboard motor and an extra stern anchor that we no longer need. Yippee - it's always good to lessen the weight on Sea Turtle! And we picked up a couple of LIGHTWEIGHT items that we needed from other sailors.

We were introduced to a delicious seasonal fruit that we have never heard of before called freijoas. They are about the size and shape of a chicken egg with an aromatic smell and sweet taste when ripe. They are not so tasty when over-ripe though, which you can only tell by cutting it open and seeing that it has started to turn brown. We ate them by the bagful!

Scrumptious freijoas pictured with an apple

One afternoon, we went into Pahia (a few minutes away by car from Opua) to hear the beat of the Tamashii Taiko Drummers. Under sunny skies, we listened to the ancient rhythms as they blended the old and the new and watched the choreography of their movements. They undergo hours and hours of training and practice to achieve such skill (www.tamashii.co.nz).

Drumming away

On another afternoon, we needed to go to Pahia again and decided to hitchhike. We didn't wait long until we were offered a ride. When it was time to return to Opua, we once again stuck out our thumbs but not many cars went past. So we decided to walk as we had been told it is a very scenic trail walk along the seashore and is about 5 km. Not much of it was at sea level and there were a lot of ups and downs but it was quite scenic.

We were disappointed that we couldn't get a quick ride back to Opua as we had been invited for a day sail in the Bay of Islands with our friends on their historic 1928 wooden schooner Niña before they departed for Australia.

Famous Niña

Enough exercise for the day, where's the wine?