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jwg

Northland

We left Auckland yesterday and drove up north to the Bay of Islands, staying at Paihia. There still are a couple of hundred more kilometers to get to the northern-most point but we aren't going that far. On the way up we stopped at the Hundertwasser Toilets. He lived in NZ for a while before his death and this was one of his projects. I've always been a great fan of his stuff and it was nice to see this. I took a bunch of pictures but since I left my memory card reader at the Auckland B&B I can't post them. (Conveniently we will pass by pretty close to that on the way to the airport on Wednesday and can pick it up along with the phone charger that we also left.)

Today we took a boat trip out into the islands and saw lots of dolphins (porpoises). I joked to rsc that they weren't real - they were controlled by remote control so that tourists could see them. Probably not actually an impossible task, but I suppose they were real. We saw lots of sea birds including a few more gannets.

During the afternoon we drove to some of the not-too-far away bays on the Pacific side. The scenery was just beautiful. And today the weather was absolutely perfect. In spite of putting on lots of sun block I feel a bit sunburned. We've done really well with the weather - a few days had a bit of rain, but nothing too much so we've never been prevented from doing anything. Parts of NZ have had some significant rain but always when we were somewhere else. The day before yesterday one of the towns on the South Island we were at a while ago had its roads closed. Yesterday one of the volcano craters overflowed and disrupted car and train traffic for a while near where we had been a few days before - no one was injured. They have a good warning system which is needed considering the earthquake history and vulnerability they have.

The papers are full of speculation of what will happen when the PM visits Bush this week. Last week the hot news was about the legislature that is about to pass an Antismacking bill as they call it making it illegal for parents to spank their kids. It hasn't passed yet but probably will thus creating an unenforceable law that wont solve the problem of occasional parental abuse.

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So long, and thanks for all the fish

Today we took a boat trip out into the islands and saw lots of dolphins (porpoises). I joked to rsc that they weren't real - they were controlled by remote control so that tourists could see them.

Nonononononono , you've got it backwards. The tourists are on remote controls for the amusement of the dolphins.

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