Local Heart, Global Soul

December 22, 2018

A Swim Builds Up an Appetite…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Of course on of the first things we did after checking in and unpacking in our 2017 Easter holiday in the “Roompot” holiday park, was to check out the indoor pool.

Himself and the kids enjoyed a swim, but said it was rather too crowded and noisy for their liking.

Easter holidays in a holiday park that we choose especially because it had an indoor pool, was bound to be full of other families where other parents had exactly the same idea so it was a case of share the toys and be grateful that you have it please.

The seemed to have enjoyed the swim despite some other kids being pests in the pool, splashing and kicking other swimmers during their wild antics.

Either their parents were not bothered by this behaviour or had dropped their kids off and were not present, who knows?

I told Little Mr and Kiwi Daughter that in order to avoid the crowds they should maybe get up early in the mornings and be here as soon as the pool opens: a suggestion that was met with stares of distain and disbelief, Oh I forgot, teenagers and their beds are best friends, not to be separated at any cost.

After their swim, they were ravenous so we adjourned to one of the café / restaurants on site close to the pool. It was busy there too, even too busy and rather dimly lit, to get photographs inside. We were  perched at the back on a table that was probably meant for two people so it was a little cramped to say the least.

It was cold outside and a brisk wind sent everyone scurrying inside for a warm place to eat. There is a sort of quadrangle where café / restaurants and a few shops line a central play area. 

We saw a few determined small children on the play equipment but it was too cold even for them to last long. Lunch was ok, staff were friendly but we probably would have enjoyed it more had we not been so squashed and felt like we wanted to leave the crowds behind us as soon as possible.  For a family that doesn’t really like crowds, we have to accept that a busy Easter weekend away has it’s pros and cons.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 13, 2018

A Glimpse Into The Workings On An Unusual Rooftop…

Following our tour of “The New Farm” fish farm, my friends and the rest of the tour party take the stairs upstairs. I have my crutches instead of the wheelchair, but these steps will be beyond me. The staff here have an alternative route for me that is not usually open to the public. This route takes a small lift to the roof  level and is the “back way” through the glass houses and growing areas. This gives me a unique view on how the vegies and herbs are grown here. There is another large glass house behind me, I’m not allowed to enter it but see through the closed wall that it’s full of sweet pepper plants and thousands of peppers. I didn’t get photographs of those because we had to moving foreword with the staff member. I asked about taking photographs, explained about my blog and was told that taking photographs would be fine. The space on the roof is larger than I first thought it was looking up from street level, and it shows just how much can be grown on top of one building, and how much more we could do if more commercial and residential buildings were built with rooftop gardens.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 11, 2018

Rising Markets…

Visiting the “New Farm”, an urban garden in the Hague, is an eye opening experience. Urban gardening is an excellent idea, bringing use to former office spaces, growing food literally around the corner or a few kilometres away from the people who eat it. We go three quarters of the way up the building where there is a large balcony that looks over the city. It’s wide enough for a small market, where local artisan food producers can set up a stall and sell their produce. Of course as avid foodies, our friends and I take a look…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Views from the balcony…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 10, 2018

New Farm, When Urban Gardening Reaches New Heights…

There is a new revolution going on around the world, where people are trying to cut down on the “food miles”  generated by the food we eat. By this it is meant the number of miles/kilometres that are between where there food is produced and where it is consumed. This means things cutting down on food transport wherever possible. This has meant the development of Urban gardens, and The Hague is no different. An old office building has been partly converted to become a place where fresh vegetables are grown and the name of this enterprise is “The New Farm.” Amazingly the farm produces not just tomatoes and peppers but also herbs and fish! I went with friends to take a look two summers ago, and also, of course to buy some local vegetables.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

October 30, 2018

The “Town” of Hari Hari…

Family Kiwidutch are known for needing frequent stops on road trips. Maps or graphs that give “estimated time” from one place to another are useless when you have passengers who get car-sick. One the up-side our gasps for fresh air and need to stand still mean stopping in some rather stunning locations for a breather, as many photographs attest. This time we got to stretch our legs in the tiny “town” of Hari Hari. In New Zealand, outside of cities, almost everything is a “town”, even if it only has 300 or so inhabitants like Hari Hari . Curiously our favourite holiday destination of Hanmer Springs is a village, and also known as Hanmer Village but it’s one of the very, very few exceptions. Hari Hari survives due to it being on State Highway 6, the only road running most of the length of the West Coast. It’s also in the Queenstown “loop” (see the map below) so catches passing traffic as a rest stop. We top up on drinks and are soon back on the road…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’ve borrowed a map from Tourism West Coast and edited it to show where Hari Hari is…

Tourism West Coast Map

October 21, 2018

Kiwi Daughter Starts Off In The Kitchen…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Whilst on the West Coast of New Zealand and staying in the “South of the Barber hostel”  in Greymouth we start cooking up an evening meal in the communal kitchen.

I was feeling tired so Himself told me to get in a nap because Kiwi Daughter really wanted to make a Caesar salad and wanted to help Himself cook.

We only have some very basic ingredients with us, pasta and a can of frankfurters and some cherry tomatoes that we would put separately on the side because Kiwi Daughter is allergic to raw tomatoes.

Cooked tomatoes are no problem, it’s apparently something to so with the tomato skins.

I get to do the dishes (I knew there had to be a catch somewhere!).

Kiwi Daughter remarked that she quite liked the cooking experience so Himself and I quickly responded with praise and told her she was most welcome to do it more often. Sadly that was met with “no thanks, this was enough“. Oh well, we tried. One day she will show a flicker of interest in learning to cook, probably when she leaves home and realizes that it’s something she wished she had taken an interest in at home! That said, her Caesar salad was excellent and she has to start somewhere so we encouraged her as much as possible. The meal filled a gap and after the dishes were done we could finally relax.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

October 9, 2018

Our Saints Meal Was Heavenly…

Arriving in Hanmer Springs again brings back many happy memories. the New Zealand summer has turned up the heat, delivering temperatures above 30C and we are enjoying every moment of it. We are having lunch at “Saints”, a restaurant, café, pub, in the village, burgers and salads on our menu. The outer seats were full when we arrived so we sat in the cool shade inside. The staff were very friendly, the food was great and we were very happy customers indeed. There is nothing like a good meal to get a stay off to a great start… You might even say that our Saints meal was… heavenly!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 19, 2018

Showing Local Businesses Some Love…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I neglected to mention that before Family Kiwidutch visited the main shopping area in Kaikoura, New Zealand, we had already had lunch on the main road a bit further out.

Kiwi Daughter had given us one wish (read ultimatum): to go back to “Beach House Café”… “Kiwi Daughter Finds Food Heavenhttps://kiwidutch.wordpress.com/2018/04/14/new-2830/… so that she could get another one of their amazing Caesar salads that she had discovered and loved so much.

We made a short stop before that though so that I could get a pie from the Kaikoura Bakery.

I know that the town has had a rough time, the road to the north has been closed for more than a year, the one south was only recently cleared, so access to the town has been via two smaller inland roads, the second of which was a gravel road until about a decade ago.

I also know that it wasn’t only our family who expressed a wish to specifically stop in Kaikoura in order to spend some money whilst having a rest stop from our journey, and at the same time do our bit to help a struggling community and many businesses on the financial brink.

I don’t know if it was this kind of wish that brought so many people to the bakery, or if it was just extra busy with the New Year’s public holiday imminent, but the bakery was almost beyond packed.

The shop is decently large and people patiently waiting were packed in right to the doors. Inside was what might be called “organized chaos”: staff rattling off orders, filling bags and ringing up final figures for purchases at the cash register, then calling “Next please!” for the next customer.

With at least half a dozen people working behind the counter, it was noisy and the closer I got to the counter the more people came in behind me. This was the New Year rush; it was people showing some love for a local business too. I had no hope at all to take photographs inside, but can attest that my meat pie was delicious and I think that the lolly cake and sandwich I got for Little Mr. passed his fussy inspection.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

New Zealand’s native “Pohutakawa” tree flowers with distinctive blossoms in December, earning it the nickname: “New Zealand’s Christmas Tree”, it’s included in the painted festive decorations for the bakery window…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

June 29, 2018

Sweet Or Sour?

New Zealand has it’s fair share of delicious bakery treasures. Some have their origins in our British heritage like Lemon pie (think Lemon meringue sans the meringue), others have been adapted and updated to become  more recent favourites, like caramel slice (bar). Travelling on the Interisland ferry between Wellington and Picton at the very end of 2017 we had the chance to try for ourselves. Himself’s caramel slice came this time a little modified in pie form, the filling still the sweet favourite that he loves. Given the choice between these two I will always choose the lemon, and was not disappointed: just the right amount of tartness, …Perfect!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

May 6, 2018

Cherry Lovers Find A New Delight…

Filed under: FOOD,NEW ZEALAND,PHOTOGRAPHY,Region: Wainuiomata — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Spending our 2017 Christmas Day in Wainuiomata, just outside of Wellington, we came of course bearing gifts.

But in addition to the ones destined to go under the Christmas tree there were also some gifts for the dinner table.

Our journey from Christchurch to Picton means passing through Blenheim, a region world famous for it’s award winning wines.

Less known is that both Blenheim and Central Otago in the south of the South Island both enjoy being the primary growing regions of cherries.

They both also grow apricots and Otago, many more stone fruit. We have been fortunate on our last two travels to find roadside stalls in Blenheim where we can get boxes of freshly  (that morning!)picked cherries.

I bought two boxes, one the “typical” dark red variety but the other, one new to me. It’s lighter in colour, a bright reddy-orange-yellow in parts with a white inside.

At first, I was more than a little suspicious that these cherries were not ripe, but no… this variety is supposed to look like this. I got to taste-test a few at the road side stall… hmmm, these are seriously good. In Wainuiomata our hosts and other friends also delighted in my find and agreed that the taste was fabulous. Both boxes started emptying at a steady rate. Our friends also were amazed at the prices, I paid NZD 20,– for each large box, far, far less than what they would have paid at supermarkets in the neighbourhood, or even in Lower Hutt or Wellington. The Cook Straight ferry crossing adds unavoidable transport costs to produce travelling in either direction. If we see these again in Blenheim, we will be snapping them up as quickly as we can.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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