Oh dear – just look at that nose! Poor old Selwyn took a tumble as he was on his way to the ablution block in the dark and fell off a ledge. Crack – right down onto his nose, and his knee didn’t fare too well either. But with a whole lot of TLC, a few painkillers, and tucked up in his cosy bed overnight, he had recovered enough to laugh about it the next morning. It could have been much worse, with a broken ankle perhaps, but we won’t even think about that.
The good weather continued all weekend and it is always so nice to be able to sit together outside in the sunshine. Our Rally family, Geoff and Eileen, had set us the task of a “do it yourself quiz” over the weekend. Each couple had to compile a short list of 5 general knowledge questions, and we had to go from van to van to get the questions, and hopefully write down the answers. Some questions were decidedly more difficult than others. But you know how it goes - if you know the answer, the question is easy, if you don’t know the answer, it is too hard. Barry and Diane were the clear winners.
It was announced at Sunday Morning Tea that we were having our own version of the “Chocolate Éclair Rally”, and a plate of mini éclairs were handed round. Several of us had planned to attend the original Chocolate Éclair Rally in Ohakune last month, but due to bad weather and road closures this rally was deferred a month, but the new date clashed with other commitments. Thank you, Geoff and Eileen – since we couldn’t get to that rally, the chocolate éclairs came to us!
Paekakariki Holiday Park where we were staying is set in 11 acres of rolling grounds with beautiful mature trees, and is a bird lover’s paradise. Many bird varieties kept us enthralled and entertained over the weekend. Large groups of Californian Quails appeared in the late afternoon feeding on the grass in front of our caravans – their head plumes bobbing away as they busily pecked away, feeding on the grass and any insects they might find. I crept up towards them with my camera, only to frighten them away. They took to the wing and flew away to hide from sight in a large tree.
Some pretty little Goldfinches came calling too. These are rather attractive birds with their black and tan faces, and bright yellow wing stripes. They joined in with the quail on their late afternoon feeding expeditions. Sorry for the poor quality photo, but I had to hurriedly snap them before they flew away. We do not see these birds in our garden at home, so it was lovely to spot them at Paekakariki.
We sat and watched a large Kereru (New Zealand Pigeon) high up in the trees. These heavy birds are rather clumsy on the wing, and crash about from branch to branch. Believe it or not - they have been known to gorge themselves on fermented berries and get drunk! Then we saw a Starling perched up high on a bare branch, with the sun shining off the iridescent feathers. Starlings were introduced to New Zealand in the late 1800s and have successfully made themselves at home here in this country.
We practically had the whole camp to ourselves, but once the summer holidays roll around, families arrive with their tents and caravans and to enjoy fun times at the nearby beach.