Around the World 21 New Zealand

February 11th
A breath-taking drive this morning through more tropical forests in more mountains. Part of the drive was through a gorge with water falls and rushing streams. There are many one way bridges. Yesterday there were two that were even shared with a train track which was very narrow and rough. All of the highways here are mostly two lane, even the main ones. We passed many herds of sheep, cattle and even herds of deer surrounded by very high fences. It was a long drive and we finally reached Lake Tekapo. I remember now, when seeing the spectacular light powdery blue color of the lake with the little church over looking it thatI had seen it on a trip over ten years ago never dreaming I would one day return with my French husband.
February 12-14th
I have to say that Lake Tekapo is not a place to spend the night. Our hotel was over-priced and the TV only got one, sometimes, two, channels. It was very windy outside and after seeing the lake and chapel, there was nothing else to do. We had a good view of the lake but once the sun set, not much to see or do. The next morning we made it to Timaru, a very nice, clean city on the coast. There is a huge industrial harbor here, not a cute picutresque one. Maurice went into the water as usual for a short time at the small beach. the whole area behind the beach has things for children to play on. We went to a movie, then to another beach and watched some surfers, had a sandwich in the room and then to bed.
Next was Christchurch which we loved and our B&B is especially nice with huge rooms very well decorated. The bathroom is across the hall and-once again-we find ourselves with a bathroom for those in a wheelchair with no shower stall and, in this case, no shower curtain. That and the crummy TV are the only downsides to this place. The ambience of Christchurch is wonderful, very English with nice archetecture and not too many tall business buildings. We took the tourist tram around the city, walked in the Botanic garden and just enjoyed the area.
Finally, the flight back to Sydney, then on to Hawaii. We left on February 14th and by crossing the international date line, after an over-night flight, arrived on February 14th. There was a mix up in our hotel so we spent the night at another and came back again the next morning. I love Honolulu and seeing the fabulous hotel, the Hawaiin Princess. The water is smooth, almost without waves. There are many more shops here than the twenty or so years ago that I was here but I still love being here, tourists and all. There is a wonderful ambience and the weather is always so great. They did have major rain this year on the islands and we did get caught in a couple of rain storms but, still, I always love it here.

The little chapel by Lake Tekapo

Here is the chapel from a distance. That is the actual color of the water caused by rocks being ground down to powder by glaciers.

An interesting little Spanish style street in Christchurch. I don’t know who thought of painting the buildings that color, but I sure did like them.

It is hard to find anything more special than tall palm trees along the ocean.