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NZ Story - Arrival

I arrived at Christchurch airport (minus my baggage!) on the 16th December and was met by cousin Kath (See Family Tree).



I spent a couple of days in Christchurch with Kath

and kids -  Matt,

Sorry Matt, I dont have a picture of you.

You shouldn't work so much!!!

Ange and Kelly.



Matt and Kelly were working in other parts of NZ for most of the time I was there.


While in Christchurch I visited another cousin Pat and husband Jock,

plus kids - Nathan, Ryan and Trudi (Trudz).


Nathan and Ryan were off in OZ working.


I was to return to Christchurch several times during my trip, so more on Christchurch later.

I then took a bus down to Oamaru to visit the several cousins that live there.



First port of call was to Anna and Michelle's house.


Having visitors call round always seems to prompt Kiwis into mowing the lawn.  Here's Anna (nearest) and Michelle hard at it.


And visitors are not exempt from joining in this rather strenuous pastime - it was hard work on such a warm day!


And Anna wouldn't forgive me if I didn't mention Nellie and Jesse - Two mad terriers that fitted in perfectly with Anna and Michelle!


Kiwis are barbie fanatics and during the Summer months no get together is complete without a few steaks, snags and burgers.  So a trip across Oamaru to see cousin Sheila and husband Hughie meant that it was barbie time.



Plus kids - Sorry kids, no pictures.


Kiwis are also sports fanatics so you have to earn your barbie food by taking part in various sporting activities, such as badminton...


...And cricket (a favourite at barbies).


Just a half hour drive south from Oamaru is a place called Moeraki where there is a 500m stretch of beach that quite literally spits out large round boulders (over a long period of time).


A newcomer "hatching" out from the cliff.


Anna and Michelle by a Moeraki boulder that is almost out.


And boulders that are eventually eroded and claimed by the sea.


A couple of days later there was a visit to cousin Moni and husband Tony.



 plus kids - Adam,


Luke and Josh...

...and here's Tony and friend Paul with Josh in charge of...

...Yep, tha's right - A barbie.

And of course there were various activities you could take part in.



...And Josh


And what do you when you've pigged out on serious amounts of barbie food washed down with copious amounts of beer?

Have a little lie down?


No. - Have a game of cricket - Australia vs. England match scoreboard...



Or you could go for a serious walk to burn off those burgers.


Tony took us on a cliff walk around Cape Wanbrou on the edge of Oamaru.  The sign said "Dangerous cliff path - Keep Out" - which Tony read as, "Good place to walk".


It was a lovely walk, if a little scary at times.

Here's Adam, Tony, Steph, Michelle and Anna.


The beaches round the cape are a favourite hang out for gannets - It's a shame the smell cannot be digitised.


Michelle and Anna on the last leg (on their last legs?) back to Oamaru.


The cape at Oamaru is also famous for its penguin colony.  The penguins are very shy during the day so we were lucky to get this picture...


I spent Christmas in Oamaru with the cuzzies before heading off inland to Twizel to visit another cousin - Richard (Mac) and wife Anne.  Anna, Michelle and Luke also wanted to go, so together we headed off for the mountains.

Twizel with Mac and Anne