May 12, 2012...Auckland

Six or so weeks ago, when we started moving on the South Island of New Zealand, we ran into a fun group of Northern Kiwis... pretty much the first day.  I have blogged about running into this lively group of 12 earlier in my posts.  Long story short is we have kept in contact and Kent and Cynthia and they have graciously invited us to come and stay with them until we depart for Oz Tuesday morning.  The plan is to get the whole group together for a BBQ tomorrow and I'm really quite excited!  

We feel extremely, extremely lucky to have met such warm, friendly and fabulous people here in New Zealand.  The fact that a complete stranger would offer you the comfort of their home based on similar interests is huge and extremely humbling!  Just because of that Kev and I have stopped in at all the Mackers, and approached all large groups of Kiwi's we have seen just incase we run into another Kiwi Kevin, or Dirty Dozen….NO!…ha ha ha…It makes a great story though :)

Kent graciously picked us up from our small Motel at Mission Bay and drove us to his home in Albany.  We were greeted by Cynthia, his wife, Michael the oldest son, who had made a surprise trip home from Brisbane for Mothers Day, and Kelsey their wonderful and lovely daughter.  Cynthia showed us to our bedroom, that used to be Aaron's room and we quickly settled in.  Not long after we got there, Kent and Cynthia said…"OK let's go!"  We piled into the car and drove down to Milford Beach and walked along the beach until we reached Takapuna.  It was a lovely walk, and we got reacquainted along the way…it was perfect! 

After the walk to Takapuna Michael picked us up and drove us through the cute town of Devonport and then onto North Head.  North Head was fab, the views were post card perfect, and I went camera crazy!…It was such an exciting and tranquil sight, if that makes sense…ha ha ha!  There were colorful sail boats all over the harbor, tacking here, tacking there…you can tell I'm a sailor hey??? North Head, a volcano, was a spectacular viewing point of Auckland's shiny futuristic silver city, and all of the sailing activity was going on around us…well that was the icing on the cake!  We walked around checking out the old cannons and batteries from days gone, and then decided to go and get some ice-cream, and find a lotto store!…Oh yeah, feeling very lucky!!  Michael, our professional driver, he is you know!!!…Michael drives road trains in Brisbane!… He drove us down into the township, we squeezed out of the car, they make the parking spots so small these days… and chose our flavors.  A scoop of passsionfruit for me, mint chocolate chip for Cynthia, and I can't remember what the guys had??  Cynthia ran her numbers, and I purchased the max triple dip that also put me in for the Mothers Day drawing!…Yeah, feeling really, really lucky! 

That evening Kent and Cynthia had planned a potluck dinner at their house with the balance of the "dirty dozen" Craig and Lisa, Alison and H, Shirley and Hugh, Tracey and Barry, Lee and Darren, and Cynthia and Kent…so, so cool!! Kev and I had a fabulous time eating, drinking, laughing and catching up with this fabulous group.  We partied into the next day…shock!!!…it wasn't even New Years Eve!!!…ha ha ha