We woke up pretty early, all rested up
(we HAD gone to sleep at an unreasonably early time such as eight pm or something),
and the Sky Tower was still beautifully lit up in red.
I spent some lovely time on the patio enjoying the cool breeze and eating my breakfast.By the time I was finished, the sun had risen and the tower was back to it everyday self.
Here's what I wore for the day.
|blouse: from Ross|
jeans: Style & Co from Macy's - wide elastic waistband!!!
bag: Betsey Johnson from Ross
tank top: Target
Greg got as prepared as possible to drive on the LEFT side of the road
and on the RIGHT side of the car!
This bus has itty bitty kiwi birds on the back!
These are "look out, we're working on the road" trucks.
And sometimes there will just be an exclamation point to draw one's attention to a change or something notable.
A number with a red circle around it is the speed limit.
And we saw red poppies (in memory of military members)
It was definitely fall in New Zealand, and as our trip went on, it got MORE autumnal because it was later in the season and because we drove south, which is closer to Antarctica (the south pole).
In Hamilton, our motel was right across the street from the PAKnSAVE.
It was like a small CostCo. Warehouse-y, but not as big. Some great gluten-free options.
I picked up some capsicums (also known as bell peppers!)
and some more gluten-free bread, and I happily found gluten-free bread without soy, which has been bugging me.
We saw a car like my little Cube, but everything's backwards!
Back door opens the opposite direction, steering wheel's on the opposite side, the back support column is on the other side, and more. But still super cute, of course.
One of the national symbols of New Zealand is the silver fern leaf.
Here it is as a rubbish bin (trash can).
We stopped into some second-hand stores throughout our trip to see if we could come up with souvenirs and to pick up storage containers for food we made while we were there.
At this one, I found a cute little pukeko!
He's a bird with long orange legs and a large orange beak that comes up far onto the top of his head.
We ended up seeing lots of them eating in the sheep fields throughout our trip.
We saw a desk that looks almost exactly like the one my parents brought back from Asia!
We did NOT buy it (though it would have been tempting if we wouldn't have had to transport it home!)
The Chiefs are the rugby team based in Hamilton.
We even found a store JUST for Greg!!!
The main street through town was renamed "Anzac Parade" for Anzac Day.
Here's some money!
Twenty (Queen Elizabeth of England):
A one-dollar coin (kiwi bird!):
20 cents (a Maori carving):
The 20 is bigger in size than the 10, which in turn is bigger in size than the 5!
As we were walking towards the botanical gardens, we came across an ice cream shop -
with gluten-free, vegan ice "cream"!
I got a scoop of chocolate coconut and a scoop of cherry coconut.
Greg finished it for me.
It was goooooood, and just right on a hot day.
Look at this amazing tree with her wonderful spreading roots!
And this crazy droopy tree!
After miles of walking, we came to the gardens.
Like most museums and parks in New Zealand, they were FREE - I mean, paid for by the taxpayers.
This big rock by the entrance was wearing a covering that looked as if it was made out of straw or husks.
We walked down some paths
and found a pond!
Lots of families were there with kids playing and picnics.
We found a lovely waterfall.
And then I retreated into the shady forest because I was over-warm!
Greg had fun playing around with his new camera. It has fancy features my camera doesn't have,
but of course that means it's bigger and less convenient.
The plants were interesting.
This plant (a type of milkweed, I suppose) had pods . . .
Some of the pods had burst open and were filled with fluffy seeds.
There were lilies
(don't let your cats near them!!!)
And we saw cute little blackbirds foraging.
The orange beak is very colorful!
This tree was dropping leaves like snow as we were watching the sun set behind it.
We saw these weird webby things (containing a metamorphosis-ing caterpillar, perhaps?)
on many of the plants in the garden and along the highways.
From far away, they look like tissues torn up and stuck in bushes.
Many interesting fungi, too.
And I think we saw a pomegranate tree!
The fruits were just babies.
And then it was home and to bed after eating dinner and watching the news
(we needed to learn how to pronounce all the unique Maori words we didn't know!)