Our first stop on the Indian Pacific was at Broken Hill (also known as the Silver City) where lead and silver deposits were discovered in 1883.  The Barrier Industrial Council, which is an amalgamation of the labour unions here, remains a strong force in the city.  We visited the Trades Hall, where we were treated to, and participated in, a rousing union meeting.



The Pelorus Bridge is in a beautiful area of native forest, now classified as a scenic reserve.  The forest includes beech, podocarp and broadleaf species, and is home to a variety of native and introduced birds.  It also has a population of endangered native bats.  As you will see from the photographs it had been, and still was, raining heavily when we visited.  I would love to go back and walk some of the tracks in good weather.

The Pelorus Sound and River were originally known to Maori as Te Hoiere.  According to Maori tradition Te Hoiere was one of the great canoes of the migrations that settled New Zealand.


Driving to our grandson’s wedding, we fled up the country as the roads were closed  behind us by snow, slips and ice.  A day later and we wouldn’t have made it.  The storm hit with a vengeance the following day, and we wondered how it would be for the wedding.  About an hour or so before the ceremony there was a rainbow, and by the time we gathered the rain had stopped.

Coming home the sky was clear and blue, and the roads opened ahead of us.  The mountains were beautiful in the sun.  So blessed.

Ngauruhoe, Tongariro and Ruapehu are the volcanoes of the Central Plateau, beloved in Maori legend.


I’m almost ready to pick up the thread again.  We’ve been in our new house for a week and there are tradespeople coming out our ears.  Heaps to do – wiring, plumbing, and we’ve put in a heat pump.  I’m glad that last item has been done as the weather here in New Zealand has done an absolute dip into winter again!  I am not a lot of use at the moment as my ribs are bruised at the very least – Bert suddenly jerked his lead to chase a seagull and I landed flat on my side.  Still, it only hurts when I breathe!  A couple of lovely surprises when we arrived – I was rung to say we’d won a raffle for a quilt, and on the first night when we were feeling cold, marooned and far from home we looked out the window and saw a cross lighting the sky not too far away.  We’ve ascertained that it is on the side of a big water tower.  Loved it.  Don’t want to write too much and bore you all silly on my first day back, but I’ve put in a couple of photos – of the family together for once, and of that wonderful quilt.  Look forward to catching up with you all.

…If I’m looking a bit stressed, it’s because I was.

Hope to get you news of how Bert has coped – next time.