Rebuilding Christchurch

When the world experiences a natural disaster (flood, landslide, tsunami, earthquake), there’s always a flurry of media attention. All eyes are on that country, especially when it’s a region that we feel connected to, and we raise money, donate goods, and do whatever we can to help out in relief operations. Then, a Kardashian has…

Should we do a Camper Holiday? Take the Quiz!

So, you’ve always wanted to take the kids away for a scenic camper holiday. Wow, it looks like so much fun! So relaxing! So liberating, throwing all of your gear in a movable house, and getting in amongst the wilderness without a care in the world. Answer these questions, and find out if you’re up…

Slice of Heaven

We’re currently sitting in our very own slice of heaven (Dave Dobbyn reference). It’s 9:30pm, and the sun is setting behind Lake Pukaki where we’re all set up in our final night in the camper. There are the same silver rocks we’ve seen on river beds leading down to the turquoise and pink water. Mt….

Milford Sound

Photos just cannot do justice to one of the most amazing natural wonders I have ever visited. Milford sound is nothing short of spectacular. Heck, I’ve been holding out from using the “Hunt for the Wilderpeople’s” “majestical”, but majestical it surely is. We woke up super early to avoid the queues of tour buses, and…

On the Road Again

Travelling in New Zealand, to an Australian, is a bit like living in an altered universe. It’s not different enough to be a massive shock to the system, but some things just don’t seem quite right. The paddocks, cows, and country homes look familiar…and customs and of course the language are the same; but the…

Getting Ourselves into Hot Water

3 days before our flights to New Zealand, Avalon sprained her ankle trampolining. It’s made the trip so far annoying for her, and for us. She’s in pain for starters (her ankle has turned a pleasant shade of violet), and she’s had to hobble about on a pair of old crutches I found at a…

Kia ora!

We woke at 5am to be greeted by that “service with a grimace” Sydney is famous for…and in spades. The old Greek shuttle bus driver kicked it off with his glazed expression, more interested in watching the ash fall from his cigarette than with helping us with our luggage. As he slammed the bus door,…

“Can I please have your autograph?”

Are autograph books still a thing? My precious book in the 80’s and 90’s had gelati-coloured pages with gold edges, and I was so excited to have a bunch of car drivers’ signatures (Keke Rosberg, Niki Lauda) gathered by my dad, and then the scribbles of celebs I’d met in my early days of radio…

Arigato gozaimaaaaaaa……

…aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaas! That’s how you say thank you like a local in Tokyo. Make sure you drag that final vowel sound right out until you need to catch another breath! As we sit here on our first Shinkansen fast train trip, hurtling through Japan’s many towns at 270 kph en route to Kyoto, I thought it’d…

Totoro, Totoro!

If the films “My Neighbour Totoro”, “Kiki’s Delivery Service” or “Howl’s Moving Castle” mean nothing to you, you probably won’t be interested in our day at the Ghibli Museum, Tokyo. Studio Ghibli, and its brainchild Hayao Miyazki, has produced some of the highest grossing films in Japan, all animated, and their 2001 film “Spirited Away”…