Click on the thumbnails to see an enlarged picture.

Tuesday 20th Jan
When we arrived at Leicester bus station we found out that the coach was reported to be running 30mins late. We hadn't left much time at Heathrow - don't panic! However we arrived at Heathrow with plenty of time to spare
Wednesday 21st Jan
We managed to get a reasonable nights sleep at Los Angeles and then had a day to kill while we waited for the evening flight to Auckland. Decided to take a Coach tour of the city and see the sights including Little Venice and Sunset Boulevard etc. Can you just about make out the Hollywood sign behind us?
Thursday 22nd Jan
Not sure what happened to Thursday. It began at Midnight somewhere over the Pacific and ended about 5am when we crossed the International Date Line just to the east of New Zealand.
Friday 23rd Jan
Landed at Auckland at 7.30am and then had to wait til noon for the flight to Whakatane. This little 20 seater (a Beechcraft 1900D) was quite an experience and gave us great views out of the window. Why are the two rows of seats labelled A and F? What happened to B to E? Has this little plane got thoughts of grandeur?
Saturday 24th Jan
Went to bed at 3.30 yesterday afternoon and slept through to 5 this morning - feeling much better as a result. Have been looking around the town of Whakatane today and the surrounding area. Went on a walk to the harbour area this morning and after lunch Eileen took us to see some of the local sights.
Sunday 25th Jan
We are gradually getting adjusted to the new times. After a morning walk along the river in Whakatane we met up with Eileen who took us to visit her daughter Lynn and family in Opotiki (40km away). After lunch we were taken to a local river to swim; Louisa, Thomas, Samuel and their two dogs, Buster and Chester, plus Lyn, Roger, Eileen's dog Lass and us.
Returning to the house later we were taken on a tour of their acre garden with one duck, three geese, rabbits and many chickens. Helped for a while picking the plums - but not all went in the basket!
Monday 26th Jan
We began our day with a two hour walk to the look out point on Kohi Point. The path climbed very steeply from the centre of town initially by a flight of steps which were decorated with a mural of tiles. These illustrated the creatures of New Zealand from the seas to the skies as we ascended the steps. At the look out point at the top there were magnificent views overlooking Whakatane and out to Whale Island and beyond. Unfortunately there was a lot of early morning mist and we could not see as far as White Island.
We picked up our hire car at midday. Eileen fed us well at lunch time and we spent a lazy afternoon with her poring over family photographs. She had a photo of Christine's Mum that we had never seen before - great!

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Page updated 27th January 2009