Sunday, 1 December 2013

Katikati kindness continued

What a blissful sleep!  Not even a toilet break disturbed my slumbers.  Was gear in hand, I looked to see if anyone was around. 'Kettle's on!' came a cheery voice.  What a welcome and what a shower.  Just the correct temperature and loads of power.  Oh, I felt so clean.  To top it all, the towels were soft and fluffy.  Heavenly.  

Sadly Marg had to go to work.  Pete offered to show us around the district.  We had such a fun time as he took us to local viewpoints, Waihi Beach, a waterfall and local park.  Not only did he show us around, he was able to explain the local flora, fauna and fish.  

We were intrigued to see an elderly lady with a strange contraption on a beach (no it was not a Zimmer frame).  Pete explained that it was a kontiki.  This fired out a line to catch fish.  When the lady hauled in the line, she had caught two snapper and a gurnard.  The latter had particularly attractive 'wings' I thought.  Pete taught us so much in such a short time.

Back to Katikati base camp.  I thought it only right that I should make lunch.  Just a few butties.  Not my usual Croque Madame followed by a roast and ending with Cranachan.  Still it filled a hole.

I was needing some pots and pans.  Pete offered his car key.  What?!  There are few people who would be so generous.  Hubby seemed rather anxious about borrowing the car.  He would have been mortified if he bumped it.  I remembered Pete needed some ingredients for his first attempt at making marmalade.  

That was the solution.  We all went into town.  The antique shop had nothing suitable.  Leaving Hubby behind, I walked as fast as my little legs would take me to the second-hand shop on the edge of town.  It was an Aladdin's cave of knock-knacks.  

I delved into the pile of pans and discovered a steamer with no lid.  I dived into a pile of lids and tried the one by one.  Just like Cinderella, the last one fitted.  Hurrah!  With a shiny corkscrew (at this point I had forgotten that most have screw tops) the grand total came to ten dollars.  My kitchen was developing.

I was sure we had agreed to meet outside the store.  No one was there so I hot-footed it back into town,  like a power-walker I marched on.  CRAMP.  Ouch!!  Ouch!!!!!'  Rubbing, jumping and stomping I tried to stop the spasms.  A young boy offered to help.  He looked very worried.  I told him I would be fine, hobbling away with my toes spread-eagled in pain.  Twenty yards further on the little tootsies were twinkling normally again.

I could tell from Hubby's expression that he thought I had overstayed my shopping expedition.  When I tried to explain that I thought they were coming to the shop, he refuted my suggestion (refuted.  Is that a real word or have I made it up??). I climbed onto the rear of the car like a whipped dog and sulked like for at least three seconds.  I refuse to be a mardy cat on this trip.

Back at the range, Pete set to with making his marmalade.  Dave and I sat on the decking, relaxing and taking stock.of the last month. We had been in some precarious situations at times but had come through them unscathed.

A cheery greeting heralded Marg's return.  After an evening 'snifter', the joint decision was made to visit the local fish and chip shop.  Taking advice from our hosts ( because we didn't have a clue about the difference between a snapper and a groper!) we made our choices.  Whilst waiting for it to be freshly cooked, I checked out the magazines in the corner.  There was a copy of my favourite knitting magazine.  The lady behind the counter gave it to me and fetched a pile of assorted magazines for Marg.  It seems to me that Katikati is a place where everyone knows each other and goes the extra mile to help.  

Eating fish and chips New Zealand style was fun and involved no washing up too. The wrapping paper was opened up, salt and ketchup applied to paper then lid removed from tartare sauce.  Fingers at the ready, away we went.  It was delicious and not a morsel was left.  

Once again the evening conversation flowed easily.  We discovered similarities in our taste for humour - Mrs Brown's Boys and Monty Python forever!  We also learned that Pete used to be a pirate.  That's right.  Your eyes did not deceive you, I did say pirate.  In my youth, just a few years ago, I used to be a devotee of the pirate Radio Luxembourg.  Every evening my ear would be glued to my tiny transistor radio, tuned into the air waves. Through the crackles I could just about make out the latest pop song.  I jiggled around our back kitchen like a groupie wearing my home-made psychodelic (?) trouser suit.  Now I was in the presence of one of New Zealand's equivalent pirates from Radio Hauraki.  Amazing!

Marg brought out some photo albums.  She has presented them in such a way to make them so interesting.  I must remember her style so that my albums will be enjoyable for others and not just ourselves.  

Just before we headed for bed, we watched a video of their son, Chris, flying his plane in Australia.  Another skilled member of this close, skilled and loving family.  Maybe we will meet him one day too.  We hope so.

Outside we looked up to the sky where Venus' bright light and unfamiliar constellations held us on awe.  How lucky were we to be here at this time.  Night all wherever you are, may the stars shine for you too. X

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