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From Auckland to paradise and back


View AU & NZ 2014 on Minuano's travel map.

Alarm clock woke us up at 6:00am. But let's turn back the clock a bit.

It was an unusual night, with cars hissing by all the time, sounding their horns, airplanes arriving and departing etc. As mentioned, our plan of 1 day travel to the Great Barrier Island had to include parking our "home on wheels" somewhere safe. The option is always to leave it on a regular camping site for the day + night but considering our early flight, it must have been 2 nights then. And this would be a bit like throwing money through the window. Leaving it on the street is unsafe and would be always connected with transport to and from the airport.

The need is mother of all invention. So we invented Air New Zealand security parking lot close to the airport. :-) They work nearly around the clock and we heard it but they let us park inside of one of their washing garages to hide from this parking traffic and have some privacy. Totally non-standard thinking, I guess. And we paid 15$ for staying overnight onsite, securing the van the next day and shuttle to and from the airport. Deal of deals.

Emilka is teething again and had a fever the evening before. We were checking up on her during the night..

So now, at 6:00 am we decided that she is warm but stable and off we went. Shuttle to the airport took 6 min, quick check-in at Great Barrier Airlines was a nice surprise: no security gates, bottle of water on board was ok, so was oversize luggage (Emma's carry backpack), no passports required. Relax, buddy!

Another surprise and an adventure was the aircraft: 20m long and two seats wide and 3 propellers. This looked like a joke and Miggi turned pale. Beside us here were 3 other passengers and the pilot.

The flight was smooth, Miggi survived with a smile and our camera got another new 100 photos of what we could see from the first minute of the flight. Maan, it was loud in the cabin.

No comments about Emka so far... I think because she is handling these things like it all was happening every day. No fear, no over-excitement; all is good as long mom and dad and a banana are around :-)

Great Barrier Island is a paradise at the end of the world. It re-defines colors - green forrests, blue ocean and thr sky, white sands... Everething there is more intense and more natural. People live there well (there are approx. 700) and one can see they try not to disturb the nature.

We rented an old Mazda 121 and drove back and forth, went to spend time on two beaches, talked to locals, stopped by a few lookout points and did the best we could out of the 7h we spent there. It was simply another highlight.

Driving this Mazda was funny: it was another, perhaps the ultimate level of weirdness for me. It was an old, over 200.000 km car with manual gear, right side wheel and the blinker on the right side. All upside down. But we all did well.

Return flight was again funny - this time there were 7 other passengers incl. 1 baby. Shuttle picked us up and drove straight back to our campervan.

Later we checked on a local campsite to spend the last night in our motorhome. Tomorrow we are returning it back. Our home on wheels... We liked it very much.

Emilka slept a lot today (in the plane, in the car, on the beach), needed us more than usually. We hope for her that the new teeth come out soon. Cross your fingers too :-)

Posted by Minuano 02:03

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