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New Zealand Trip Day 16 – Tirau to Mt. Maunganui

100323 Tirau to Mt Maunganui

We left Tirau ultimately headed for Brenda’s university friends Cathy and Ross, but before leaving the motel we walked along the city of café’s and found one open for breakfast that was very reasonably priced, 50% less than South Island prices for the same grub. Brenda had a treat, Spaghetti on toast:

Yes, folks, that is a fairly common sort of breakfast here and it has to be Wattles Spaghetti out of a can – almost exactly the same as Franco American for those of you in The States.

Into the van and off we go. First stop Hobbiton aka Matamata (Maori for “Hobbits don’t really live here, it’s just a movie you twit”):

The farm that still has some of the movie set is located here. For a dear price you can take a several hour tour of the place but neither of us were THAT into the hobbits and besides, why spoil the magic by peaking behind the curtains?

Then is was up into The Kaimais (Maori for “steep enough that cows occasionally fall off cliffs”) to visit Lyndy Cullen:

The Cullen’s are Brenda’s surrogate family – Max and Leonie call Brenda their fourth daughter – and Lyndy is the second youngest. She’s also completed the World Championship Ironman in Hawaii, a competition you have to place in the top 2 of your age group in New Zealand to even get into. The Ironman is 2.4 miles of swimming in the ocean, 112 miles of bicycling and then running a marathon. Lyndy claims to be the sane Cullen kid.

We arrived at Cathy and Ross’s. They have a very nice place in Mt. Maunganui (Maori for “we hide the Tip Top ice cream from foreigners here”) with beach access. I spent the rest of the day catching up on the blogging while Brenda took a walk with Cathy to the top of Mt. Maunganui, which affords this wonderful view:

The rest of the evening was filled with catching up with friends and swapping stories around a tasty Kiwi dinner featuring lamb, of course.

NOTE: Though we got to see great scenery and visit with great friends it was a crap (though I used stronger language at the time) day because we could not find Tip Top Hokey Pokey ice cream on a cone. We settled for the Streets brand which in my opinion is the worst Hokey Pokey ice cream made on Earth.

2 comments to New Zealand Trip Day 16 – Tirau to Mt. Maunganui

  • dallas

    sensing a theme with the ice cream.

  • Mark Fisher

    Jon, I’m curious…Did Brenda eat all of that toast? As I look at that plate of food, which in itself is a thing of scenic wonder, I think the spaghetti and eggs are side-dishes, present only to facilitate the consumption of large quanities of toast.

    Here is my theory…The entire trip is a clever disguise to keep the people at home in the dark about Brenda’s addiction to toast and your addiction to Tip Top Hokey Pokey Ice Cream. You’re both exposed. Seek help.

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