Page 4 of Use2bbandman Travel Blog Posts


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Rotorua April 5th 2011

April 5, 2011: UGH….the really HARD rains awakened both the 1st Lady and myself this morning about 6:30AM……and from that time on, it was quite evident to this sagging hulk of Me that I should have just gone right ahead and rolled my body from the horizontal position to some type of vertical one. I never did return to sleep, so finally…..about 7AM, I did do just that…..get this sagging hulk into an upright position. And, the rains continued. After the morning rituals…..I, as quietly as possible in a small room that was rather dark, put on some clothes and tried to sneak out the door, again as quietly as possible. Going down the quiet hallway, I went into the kitchen and put some water into the electric pot, measure out more than the stated amount ... read more
Boiling water coming out of the ground
1st Lady beside some of the steamy hot springs
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Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Rotorua April 5th 2011

Playing catch-up on our travels on the map: From Plimmerton up to Mt Egmont National Park to a night in New Plymouth. Then to Waitomo Caves to view the glow worms on the cave ceiling and one night there.....and, then we are now located at Rotorua for two nights. ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves April 4th 2011

April 4, 2011: Well…..when we woke up…..it had rained….and it had rained HARD quite a bit of the night. However, even though everything was wet outside, it appeared that it might clear off…..if only for a short period of time. We both took care of the morning rituals…..and then we went into the kitchen/lounge/social room…..and had a bite or two of breakfast, along with coffee and tea. I had already begun talking with a young man from Germany…..and so, during our breakfast we continued our discussions and comparison of our two countries. Saying our farewells, we loaded the car and soon were driving out of New Plymouth along another gorgeous coastal highway…..and it continued for about 30 minutes….perhaps a bit more. We made other stops for some photos, one being where the beach was absolutely black……extra ... read more
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A small inlet from the Tasman Sea into this little bay
Sting Ray

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » New Plymouth April 4th 2011

April 3, 2011: SURPRISE!!!!! After pulling back the panel drapes in multi-windowed corner room, there was the blue sky, the sun peeking up over the hills in the east…..and a beautiful day, once again, seemed to be with us for our travel day. YEAH!!!! After the morning rituals were completed, the 1st Lady and I had breakfast in the dining room with many others who had spent the night here at the BEST hostel we have stayed in yet……the Moana Lodge in Plimmerton, just north of Wellington about 13 miles. Everyone seemed to be anxious to be on their way(s)…….as there seemed to be lots of hustle and bustle in the large kitchen. We had out bags packed and spent a few minutes of just relaxing over our tea and coffee, and conversing with the couple ... read more
The water tower in a town outside Taranaki NP
With key in hand, the 1st Lady attempts to unlock the door to the tower
The winds were sooooo strong she could not stand up on top!


April 2, 2011: Ahhhhh.......we got up to another perfect morning/day......not a cloud in the sky and with the blue of the sky reflected in the very calm and placid bay.....we just knew that we should remain here for another day. Such a lovely, lovely hostel with so many beautiful people from so many various countries here to visit with, to learn from, and to have a few glasses of wine with.......we just couldn't leave. So, we asked to stay, but had to change rooms....and were assigned the best room in the hostel....definitely!!! This one is on the corner of the hostel and has total windows on the two sides.....looking over the beautiful blue bay.....WOW! This place, like soooo many others, is just amazing in it's beauty, it warmth, and those staying here, as I said above. ... read more
Our room
Inside the beautiful room
1st Lady on our morning walk


April 1, 2011 April Fools Day: After a super evening at Tombstone Backpackers Hostel……just a really friendly, very clean, and full of warmth and friendliness from everyone that is there……we had a great breakfast of FRESHLY bake and quite hot “scones”. More like our country made biscuits at home, but nevertheless, they were just super!!!! All kinds of bread for toast making, cereals, butter, and tons of honey and jams available……free of charge!!! We packed things up, loaded the car, and then by 9AM we were down at the local Library where we could access the FREE wifi, rather than pay the $5 for one hour at the hostel. We both used the wifi, and then we walked around on the lovely main street of Picton…….full of great NZ type items….some very artistic and some very ... read more
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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Picton March 31st 2011

March 31, 2011: Another slow beginning to this day……a day which commemorates exactly 68 years since I became a part of this exciting and incredible world!!! Since we did not have but about 1.5 hours of traveling to get to our next destination……Picton…….we didn’t leave until a bit after 10AM. I received a wonderful BD card from the 1st Lady…..as well as some dark chocolate kisses made by Hershey. I suppose she brought them with her without me knowing it…..hmmmm…..perhaps I need to open my eyes a bit wider??? We drove back across a mountain range…..for the 3rd time: 1) when we first arrived on the South Island and drove from Picton to Nelson; 2) when we arrived in Nelson from Kaikoura and had driven through Blenheim and the winery regions; 3) this time going from ... read more
Picton Marina:  Largest marina in South Island
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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Nelson Region » Nelson March 30th 2011

March 30, 2011: WOW…….WHAT A DAY!!!!!! The morning went by rather slowly after I confirmed that I would be flying/gliding today. The weather was super…..and so the 1st Lady and I lounged around the grounds of this lovely hostel. 12 noon came and so did our van shuttle which picked us up to take us to the top of the mountain for the paragliding experience. The 1st Lady went to take pictures with my camera, as the “pilot” had his own camera and video which he took from the air. After about a 15 minute harrowing ride up this mt. with the 1st Lady covering her eyes and leaning downward between the rows of seats, as the height and the gravel road just about did her in!! When we arrived at the top, the pilot and ... read more
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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Nelson Region March 29th 2011

March 29, 2011: Absolutely the most gorgeous travel day we have experienced, I believe. Not one tiny wisp of a cloud in the sky…..and the first hour plus, was a drive that hugged the coastline about as close as the road could get without crashing into the rugged, jagged cliffs hanging over the shoulder of the road. We left right at 9AM, after a great night’s sleep in Lyelle’s Creek Lodge……that marvelous place we have stayed for the past two nights. Such a refreshing drive…..and we arrived in the Blenheim area about 11am……driving through acres and acres and acres and more and more acres of vineyards!!!! WOW……just about beats any wine area I have ever visited…..perhaps it does “beat” any that I have seen!! We decided to visit a few this morning since we were making ... read more
Salt plant
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Close-up




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