Monday, 27 July 2015

Whangarei (Fhan-ga-ray): family, friends, fun fun fun!

We were eager to get going the next morning: we were due to meet Cat, friend Gael and friend-and=soon-to-be-sister-in-law Bex. They'd come up from Auckland (a mere two and a half hour drive) for the pleasure of a 16 kilometre run through the forest.

Those girls. We'd seen several runners finish, but weren't perturbed as we knew that Cat had a knee 'injury' ("Just runner's knee, Mum) so didn't expect her to come in early.  However, we weren't prepared for the shrieking, laughing and chatter we heard from them before they came into view, sprinting along the track towards the finish line - probably the most dramatic finish the race saw.

The knee was FINE - just strapped comprehensively with blue tape.
Saturday morning - just the day for a 16km run. Cat, with running buddies friend Gail and friend-and-soon-to-be-sister-in-law Bex, got up at the crack of dawn to drive to Glenbervie Forest near Whangarei .

Much laughter, much chattering and many hugs.  Lorne and Sue, dear friends from Whangarei, had come to meet us, so it was a lovely reunion all round. Brilliant to meet Bex for the first time, too.

Eventually we dragged ourselves away and took ourselves off to Onerahi for a picnic in the brilliant sunshine, perched high up next to the airport, overlooking the harbour. Small planes whistling overhead made it just perfect. After, Lorne and Sue took us along the coastal road to Ocineans Beach, though, to be quite honest, we all chatted far more than we saw the views - vista after vista of beautiful beaches, oyster catchers and gentle hills nestling down to the sea.

Picnic lunch at Onerahi, next to the airport and within spitting distance of little planes flying directly overhead.

The next day, after Lorne led St Andrews church in their weekly service and we, as visitors, had a wonderful welcome from the warm-hearted congregation, we drove off back to Auckland in the rain.

Cat and I sat in the back of the van, Captain Pollard at the helm, wedding planning...

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