#9 - last day in kerikeri! mountain biking, parrots & a last delicious meal with the Scahills!

Kerikeri Travel Blog

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I really went for a mountain "hike" - instead of "bike" since i had to walk up so many hills!!!!

*****DAY NINE (Thursday, December 11th):  LAST DAY IN KERIKERI*****

Today I got a little taste of the town of Kerikeri.  Pam drove me into town in the morning & since she was attending Sam's prize-giving (Sam is Chris & Wendy's daughter/Pam's granddaughter), I thought it would be fun to walk around town for a few hours.  Oh, and "prize-giving"is basically the end of the year assembly where they give awards to people in the class. 

So, I had time to walk through the entire town of Kerikeri....basically because the downtown is about 5 or 6 blocks long!  :)  It is so cute & there are a lot of little cafes, stores, etc .  I settled into a little coffee shop for awhile.

Wendy - who kicked my butt on our mountain bike ride!
..got my flat white (I am LOVING these - we don't do anything like a flat white in the US....it's kind of a less foamy version of a cappuchino....a less milkly latte...and a yummier americano.  there you have it. )...and did some planning for the next part of my trip.  Lonely Planet has been my bible & it hasn't steered me wrong yet!  I checked out the diving options in Whangarei and got really excited about going to Tutukaka to dive (I know, very funny name!)

Then when I left the coffee shop, I wandered into a little silver jewelry place.  There was the nicest girl working at the counter.  We actually ended up chatting for a half hour or so.  She was telling me all about Kerikeri and why she's so happy she moved here from Auckland.

CROAK ROAD!!! That's what our ride was called!
  It's a real community, people know each other, they look after each other, etc.   Unfortunately, there was a pretty tragic crime that happened in November that has the community a bit rocked.  Apparently, a 14 yr old boy killed a girl from his high school in a pretty brutal way.  It has the whole community reeling since NOTHING like that has ever happened in that town.   It has defintiely had a big effect on the town & the kids & everything.   This was a case that Chris Scahill was working on since he is the Chief Inspector & Peter and Pam had recently told me about it.   It really is so sad.  :(

Anyway, after our little chat - that ended on a much more positive note, by the way - I ended up making my first purchase of my trip!  I bought this awesome silver ring in the shape of a Koru.

THE PARROT PLACE!!!!
  It symbolizes the unfolding fern....about new growth, new beginnings, etc.  Seemed appropriate for the beginning of my trip!  :)  And I really love the shape....it's like a little spiral.  And as an extra bonus, they were having an Xmas sale, so I got the ring for $15 NZD (I think that's about $8 US). 

I think met up with Pam, Wendy, Chris, and Sam for lunch at the Fishbone.  Sam had just won the "best girl" in her class (I'm actually not sure of the exact title - but that's what it meant) at her prize-giving!  Very exciting.  :)

After lunch, I had my first mountain biking experience!  Wendy took me to a beautiful trail and I was all excited to try out mountain biking.  I've done lots of road biking, but I've actually never been on a mountain bike on a real mountain bike trail so honestly, I was a bit nervous.

Inca, a blue & gold Macaw. Hellooooo! (that's what he said to me)
  I thought for sure I'd be getting some nice bumps, scrapes and bruises to add to my Kerikeri memories that day!   So it turns out I didn't end up falling off the bike or anything....but I guess that's really difficult to do when you are WALKING it up the hills.  OMG!  It was SO hard.  I would literally get half-way up the hill and then have to jump off & walk my bike up.  I technically went mountain HIKING, instead of biking!  Wendy definitelly kicked my butt!!!  She was so awesome!!  Even though I had a tough time with some of the trail, I had a ton of fun trying it out & it was such beautiful scenery as well.  

After my mountain biking adventure - we finally had time to go visit the Parrot Place.  I had heard so much about it - I was very excited to see it!!!  What a wonderful place they had created.

It's wine time!
  It was fun to see all the birds and the beautiful landscaping.  It must have been so hard for them to give up!  Anyway, a trip to Kerikeri would not have been complete without a trip to the Parrot Place!!!  I think I'll need to e-mail the Lonely Planet and get them to add it.

Then, it was so funny - Pam and I got back into the car and she said exactly what I was thinking, "Wine time!"  :)  So, we went back to their house and had some savvie and cheese & crackers in their backyard.  It was a gorgeous evening and it was so nice to be able to sit outside!    They both have such a great sense of humor and a great attitude about life - it's been wonderful spending time with them. 

That night for dinner, they made lamb & roast veggies - and the carrots were fresh out of their garden.

The Scahill's backyard.
  YUMMMMMM!!!!  It was such a lovely evening, I was so sad when I had to start packing up my stuff because I was going to be leaving in the morning.  I can't believe I was there for five nights and four days!!!

This was really such a special way to start my trip through New Zealand.  SO wonderful to stay with such a warm, welcoming, fun family.  I am so grateful to Pam, Peter, Wendy, Chris, Sam and Tim for making Kerikeri such an amazing experience for me!   I feel so lucky that I met Julia in San Francisco and that she was so kind to introduce me to her family!  Aroahanui to the Kerikeri & San Francisco Scahills and a big fat MWAH!

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I really went for a mountain hike…
I really went for a mountain "hik…
Wendy - who kicked my butt on our …
Wendy - who kicked my butt on our…
CROAK ROAD!!!  Thats what our rid…
CROAK ROAD!!! That's what our ri…
THE PARROT PLACE!!!!
THE PARROT PLACE!!!!
Inca, a blue & gold Macaw. Hellooo…
Inca, a blue & gold Macaw. Helloo…
Its wine time!
It's wine time!
The Scahills backyard.
The Scahill's backyard.
A little Latino lovebird.
A little Latino lovebird.
The mountain biking trail...the ro…
The mountain biking trail...the r…
Mountain biking in kerikeri!
Mountain biking in kerikeri!
WHEW!!! I made it to the top.  OMG…
WHEW!!! I made it to the top. OM…
Pam and with a female king parrot.
Pam and with a female king parrot.
Parrots at the parrot place!  Ecle…
Parrots at the parrot place! Ecl…
Another cute little bird at the pa…
Another cute little bird at the p…
Just to give a sense of the Parrot…
Just to give a sense of the Parro…
Pam & i were sitting outside drink…
Pam & i were sitting outside drin…
Kerikeri
photo by: pinkpeardrops