After a nice bacon and egg breakfast, and pulling half of the Christmas crackers and reading their jokes, we set off in the kayaks (one of us having to go back and pick up the third person because we only had two) and started hiking a trail. We hiked over forest hills and through Shire-like pastures, stopping at viewpoints were we could see the calm ocean. Sitting in the shade of a tree we looked out at the small swell hitting the cliff side. We could see the ripples on the water as a gust of wind swept through. The feeling of peace was profound as I saw the intricate patterns of wind, water and cloud shadow playing on the salty sea. Unfortunately, the rest was soon up and we continued on our way. Other view spots were dotted along the path, and one I especially enjoyed was a small inlet with clear enough water that we could see the sea floor, even though we were a couple hundred feet up. We arrived back at the boat for a late lunch and nap. Christmas day was finished with a delicious dinner comprised of an expertly cooked prime rib roast, potatoes, broccoli, popovers, and pumpkin pie. Boxing Day
On the 26th of December we changed anchorage to a protected channel between Moturua and Motuiekie islands. Fluenta (a boat with 2 children near my age and a 4-year-old) and Verakai (a boat with one twelve-year-old girl) were also there with us. Victoria, the eldest child on Fluenta, and I had planned to make a birthday cake for Ella, the child on Verakai. Around 1: 30, after a lunch of chicken sandwiches, I kayaked over to them. The birthday cake we made was a simple white cake. We made an easy frosting that we dyed blue and yellow. Using the blue icing, Victoria taught me how to basket weave the sides before we smoothed white icing over the top. We made a simple shell pattern around the upper boarder in yellow and white marbled icing. This took around three hours, after which I came back to Anthea for an early dinner. At around 7:00 we all piled into Fluenta’s dinghy and went to Verakai for the birthday celebration. The four of us kids went down below and started a game of spoons, and then monopoly. Half way through the game we were called for cake and singing. The cake was beautiful, but the taste was a bit bland. In the end Jonathan, the middle child on Fluenta, won monoply and the party started to close up. Shivering as we got back to Anthea, we immediately jumped in bed. New Year’s
On New Year’s Eve day, we anchored just off Russel, across from Pahia. Getting to shore was easier now that we had inflated the dinghy. There was a wonderful little museum that told us about the history of Russel. It even included a one fifth scale of the Endeavor, Captain Cook’s ship, which had traveled 15, 000 miles (by trailer)! Lunch was a bacon and egg pie with an apple treat, before going back to Anthea. We were about to leave to a more protected anchorage when we were told this was the best viewing spot for the fireworks, and we were invited to a party on Verakai. Fluenta was also there, along with Zest, a boat with two twin 13 year olds. The party started around eight and lasted to 1:00 am. The time was filled with talking, board games and card games. At midnight the Pahia fireworks started. they lasted for ten to fifteen minutes, after which, the Russel ones started up. At 1:00 we rode back to Anthea and dropped into bed, exhausted. Devon
Bay of Islands Marina, safely docked in the teeth of a rapidly deepening low pressure system
3 thoughts on “Holiday Celebrations”
Happy New Year, Antheans!!! I hope 2018 brings you continued wonderful adventures! And please do keep on posting!!
Happy 14th Birthday Devon! You are a fine writer and a wonderful Baker. Sending love from the Northern Hemisphere. We got our first rain this winter season today. Nice to see the liquid stuff again.
Dearest Devon, I can hardly wait to hug you ( and give you your belated birthday presents). Thank you for giving us a nice rundown on your holiday doings. Sorry the birthday cake was bland but you learned a new frosting trick- to add you your rapidly expanding repoitoire. Glad you arrived back dockside before the storm hit. Much love , Nana