Thursday, April 24, 2014

More New Zealand Delights

Another place that Vivien and Tony took us to see was the Waitangi Treaty Grounds.  This is where in 1849 the Maori chiefs and representatives of the British Crown signed a treaty.  The treaty is considered to be New Zealand's founding document.  

The next photos are of the beautifully carved meeting house.  

To show respect, you are asked to remove your shoes when entering the building.

Look at the weaving on some of the boards.

Next are two photos showing the carving on one of the Maori ceremonial canoes.

Next is the historic Treaty House.  James Busby, who was the British government’s representative in New Zealand from 1833 to 1840, conducted much of his official business in the house.  It was also where he, his wife Agnes, and their six children lived.  Today the parlor and one bedroom are set up to look the way they did in 1840.  There are displays in the other rooms.

I loved seeing this wonderful doll.

And how about this wonderful needlework table?

After spending some time with Vivien and Tony, we were off to Napier to spend time with my friend Sherelyn and her husband Keith.  Napier is on Hawkes Bay on the east coast.  

Below are some photos of the beautiful countryside.

One of our excursions in Napier was to take the Art Deco tour.  Napier suffered a lot of destruction in 1931 due an earthquake.  When the town was rebuilt, it was decided to do so in the Art Deco style.  Here are some of the buildings.

One of the unusual places we went was Opposum World.

Opposum World claims that they create "useful products from an ecological nightmare". 

The opposums were introduced into New Zealand from Australia in 1837 to establish a fur trade.   There are now more than 30 million opposums living in New Zealand.  They heavily damage the forests by eating leaves, buds, flowers, fruit, and seeds. In both New Zealand and in Australia, we saw metal rings around trees to protect them from opposums. Opposums also eat insects, bats, birds, and bird eggs. They have no natural predators in New Zealand.  

Since the 1940s, New Zealand has been trying to rid itself of these pest by either trapping or poisoning them. Opposums have become such pests that some drivers actually swerve their cars to hit them.

Opposum World is just one of the places that makes objects from the opposum fur.  The fur is often spun together with merino wool to produce a lightweight, yet strong, yarn that was is wonderful at retaining heat.

Well....enough about the opposums...

While in Napier, I taught a class for Sherelyn's shop, Heirlooms.  (I showed you photos in a previous blog post.)  Vivien and Tony drove down to Napier so Vivien could be in the class.

While we were busy stitching, Tom, Tony, and Keith went to a local gannet colony.  Here are some photos of the views they saw while on the way there.

And once there, this is what they saw.

The morning after my class, Vivien and Tony took us back to Auckland so we could fly to Melbourne the next day to begin our tour.  Here are a few photos taken shortly before we left Napier.
I love this photo of Keith and Sherelyn.
Here I am with Sherelyn and Vivien in front of Sherelyn's darling car.
And here are the men--Tony, Keith, and Tom.  Such good-natured sports to put up with us and our "addiction".
We made a leisurely trip back to Auckland with various stops along the way for antiquing, coffee (flat whites), and lunch at the place shown in the following photos.  The items are part of an outdoor mosaic living room.  You can see more photos here.

In order for you to get the right perspective of the size of the items, I asked Tom to sit on the sofa.

Next from Australia.


Margaret said...

Wow! So so cool! I loved seeing the Maori architecture and carvings and all. Such a delight to go sight seeing through your eyes!

Angie Burrett said...

I have so enjoyed your beautiful photos of New Zealand. Thank you for sharing your journey - enjoy Australia!

Annette-California said...

Gorgeous scenery! Loved all your beautiful photos of New Zealand.
love Annette

Marion said...

I'm glad you had such good weather in NZ. Some areas were experiencing a drought at the time as you can see from the colours in the photos. It seems to have been raining ever since though!