The land of sheep and chocolate

Monday, November 13, 2006

Getting Away

Having been in the country for over three months, we decided that it was time to see a bit of it. It's a bit tricky to get away with two dogs and a baby, but we're determined to do our best and last week, we got ourselves a giant tent. This weekend we loaded it into the back of the Mazda along with Lily, Molly and Jake and headed for Wanganui, 70 miles up the coast.

Like Levin, Wanganui is a bit of a backwater and slightly off the beaten track. But it is a lovely old historic town in the middle of some fantastic, spectacular countryside. All jolly nice and we were glad we had made the effort to go.

We stayed at Castlecliff, where the beaches are even more wild than those of the Horowhenua. The wind was gusting from the sea and the spray hovered over the black sand like a bank of fog. Safely back from the coast, we were protected from the worst of the wind although the tent did flap noisily through the night. And in the day, the sun was shining as if it was summer, which it almost is now.

The only real drama was the escape of Jake from the tent at 2am and our inability to track him down. I wasn't really worried about him running away because he's not the kind of dog to wonder off deliberately. However, he's not the cleverest beast ever and he could easily lose himself in a campsite. He's also black and difficult to see. I spent 10 minutes in an escalating state of panic, searching the grounds and the beach before he popped out at me from behind a cabin.

So, only a minor incident to blemish an otherwise successful weekend.


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