May Returning to Thames

Boarded the plane at 11.40 am on the 1st May cloudy around the hills, a bit bumpy for awhile, knee was very sore (Knee was injured while I was doing water aerobics in Geraldine, Too many high kicks, lesson learnt!!) arriving at Auckland at 1.10pm. Janine waited and waited watching everyone else exit the plane including hostesses finally I arrived in a wheel chair, but only because it was quicker than me hobbling with my stick.
Went back to Kaiaua and rang Lisa and Nadia from the bedroom, to say I could not come. Janine sent them out and they found me wow their eyes were big.
The days have gone by fast, Adell’s graduation. Trip to Wellington on Murphy’s bus with their travelling club for 4 days of great companions, interesting sights, including Te Papa, two hour harbour cruise, the wind turbine getting there was like nearly reaching heaven but the road was hell. Thanks to our good driver Pete we got up and down again safely. We will never forget Beverly our guide. We also saw parliament at question time (Did we really vote this pack of children into parliament??), Travelled the cable car, visited an early settlers cottage. We packed a lot in but at a leisurely pace. The weather was perfect, warm and no wind. Arriving back home at 6.00pm.

Saturday and Sunday was taken up with the 10th anniversary of the Thames Small Guage Railway. Giving rides over the 2 days to over 1500 people, including two in their eighties who had a real thrill and did not stop at one ride.
Trains came from as far as Raumati Beach, Palmerston North, Havelock North, New Plymouth, Rotorua, Hamilton, Manakau, Whangarei. A great collection of steam trains on the track. A chance for old friends to catch up. An abundance of steam, food and yarns. We had the pleasure of having our youngest member attend, the beautiful 3 month old daughter of Jimmy and Kitty. 3.00pm arrived and we were packing up very tired but pleased with the weekend, weather was perfect and visitors left saying they would be back.
Tuesday saw me pack up ready to fly south for the winter Brrrrrrrrrrr.

Caught the plane back to the South Island 21st May arriving at Christchurch a 1.50pm. Catch a bus was waiting arrived at Waimate at 6.30pm.
The whole day was down hill all the way. Muck up with my booking, landed in Wellington where the plane was cleaned and more passengers came on board. The hostesses were great, because of my sore knee they sat me up the front of the plane and used a wheel chair to take me off.
Friday saw me out to Jan's at Ikawai where we had a farewell to farmers moving on from the valley, it was a great night.
Saturday I set off from Ikawai at 10.30am heading for Mosgeil, went to the R.S.A for tea and dance evening with Margaret Bates singing and playing, oldies were doing sequence dancing. Ihave not seen it done before but the dancers kept going from 8am until midnight very fit people.
Sunday I headed for Gore and the Golden Guitars week. Nothing happening on Monday so I went for a drive to Invercargill, saw the ticker tec parade celebrating the Stings good netball win.
Wednesday back at Gore where a heat for the talent quest was being held at Woolworths went to the next heats the next day held at Countdown. The finals were held on the Friday at H & S Smith, some good items very hard to judge the best ones. Friday night was the Mary Duff concert got to bed at midnight. A 10am start on Saturday for the Gold Guitars, some good singing, Country-Rock, not my scene a bit noisy. Saturday night saw the Gold Guitars song writers competition, Kylie Harris won this, another midnighter to bed.
8am start on Sunday this time traditional country the place was packed, travelled back and forth from different rooms during the day watching various shows. The evening was the play off for the finals in Gold Guitar. A 30yr birthday bash after the show starting at midnight, got to bed at 3am.
Went back to Invercargill to visit Trish and Rusty Reynders enjoyed the visit where Trish took me to Bluff, Heading back to visit them in February. Left Trish at got to Balclutha, staying the night in a camping ground, "Helped" the economy of Balclutha by blowing my budget on purchasing a large picture of a steam train and station, the picture is powered so when turned on the lights on the train and station light up an awesome sight, bread and water for the next week.Frosty morning onleaving Balclutha, met rain at Mosgeil travelled through Dunedin and up and over the hills in cloud, hair raising drive, with visibility down to a few feet, no where to pull over, was glad to see the sun shine on the other side phew!