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UK Kiwis back in NZ!

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UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Rich on 9/1/2010, 7:15 am

I've created this area especially for Dave & Carole to write their blog from New Zealand where they are staying for the next three months. I know Dave has been online a few times since they flew out so I hope he'll pick it up from here...

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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 11/1/2010, 8:04 am

As you say, have picked it up now and hope it is the right place.

Not a lot to report as we have been busy catching up with frtiends and family.

Dropped into the repair shop that has the MGB. We brought a new petrol pump and distrbutor over with us so they are about to be fitted. Should have the car back in two weeks with new tyres and brakes freed up etc. Will then attend a local MG meeting.

Nice being back here, so familier and yet a bit strange, rather like putting on an old
comfortable shoe.

All the best to you all.

D&C


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Rich on 11/1/2010, 8:13 am

Glad you've found your 'blog-spot'... Looking forward to reading about what's happening on the other side of the planet!

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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 22/1/2010, 7:23 am

Have managed to find a few spare moments to write up our flight over and general
impressions of New Zealand. Richard will transfer it here as time allows.

Soon we will have the MGB which needed a lot more doing to it than we planned for.
Brought over a distributor and petrol pump but it seems everything touched falls to pieces. The radiator for one, then the water pump and after a brake overhaul, the master cylinder. It goes on. Being a nice example of a 1965 car and original it is probably worth the expense as they fetch around twenty five thousand dollars here ( about 2 to the pound at the moment, has been as high as three a year or so ago)

We have several MG Car Club events in the pipe line so will keep up on here with them.
By the way, the Auckland club run a monthly run mid week to some attraction or other. I guess it would have to be for retired folk....wow, nice that, don't feel so bad now.

The 38th 'Far North' rally has just been run and organised by the same couple. They
are MG mad and when we had all our children their four boys travelled in the back of a specially fitted 'ROADSTER' the boys are now married and run aspects of the club. They brought over three midgets from NZ to UK two years ago and won the California cup on the second attempt.

Rob and Lynn Douglas attended the rally in their TC, they are the couple who toured South America in their 1947, I think it was, TC. They want to settle in NZ. Alaska to the bottom of South America. Forgot to mention in the account I sent Richard about the couple we met at the Classic car show. They were from Argentina and had been on the road in a 1929 American Graham Page ( Like a Ford model A) Just the two of them but now they have four children including a young baby. What an effort, makes one feel very humble, they don't plan to stop anytime soon!


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Rich on 23/1/2010, 5:30 am

I'm still blown away with the fact that we were chatting the other night from opposite sides of the globe with no delay and sound quality better than when you're in Northampton. Good old Skype!

Anyhow, I'll post your first 'Letter from NZ' this evening...

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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Lee121 on 23/1/2010, 8:37 pm

Brilliant to be kept up to date....looking forward to seeing some photo's from over there soon!!


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 24/1/2010, 2:51 pm

Thanks,

Richard has some photos. Went to the opening of the new Hampton Downs race circuit (a drivers circuit they say) It was a McClaren trust presentation with many of Bruce's old cars to see. Huge Formular 5,000 grid from all over the world and some other historics from around the globe.

Report and photos soon.

'Watch this space' as they say

ps: pick up the MGB Monday, expensive refit but hopefully worth it.

WOF ( Warrent of fitness...MOT ) stated exhaust too loud....'Oh yeh?'
They should have heard 35 racing 5000,s ear shattering!


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Letter from NZ, Chapter One

Post  Rich on 24/1/2010, 9:48 pm


747-400. 8 PM and we take off from Heathrow, a good time to depart, a half hour later dinner is served and we watch two in flight films, suddenly it’s 1am. We fly over Russia, Mongolia then China. Thirty nine thousand feet below icy wastes slide by with only the thin lines of oil pipes to break the snowy tundra. We sleep for six hours and hallo, we land in Korea. An hour and a half to refuel and we take off again. This time though in the oldest 7.47 still flying. A cramped rattler of a plane with TV screens way down the cabin. Twenty two hours flying time completed and we arrive to brilliant warm NZ sunshine, lovely! It is like putting on old comfortable shoes, everything is familiar but somehow strange after so long in England.

Auckland city is the size of Los Angeles but only a million plus people live in it so the new railways are a novelty, narrow gauge, three foot six, I think. We ride one from what was the old post office building down town but now as modern as Cannon Street, out to NZ’s biggest shopping mall for lunch. Another day we cross the Waitamata harbour on the Devonport ferry to the city upon a sparkling sea. I am in heaven.

A day or so later we travel south to Glenbrook, one of the best-preserved steam railways in the world. The drivers wear white ties to give some idea. Another day we drive out to a rural town for the biggest American classic automobile show I have ever seen. New Zealand was built with American cars from the forties onward, they are all here. Hot cars, hot weather, hot Tottie! The burning heat brings them all out, Rambler, Chevrolets and Buick so many iconic names. My favorite is the 1949 Buick fast back. Poetry in sculptured metal, with a three speed column gear change and period bakelite radio.

I listen to local radio and bask in the quiet of a time I thought past. Ross McMillan, he farms 3,000 hectares of South Island hill country, oh and he writes poetry. Alias ‘Blue Jeans’ Ross manages to include Sat Navs in his verse, he is eighty, he farms in Naesby in Central Otago, now where have I heard that name before? He drinks in the Ancient Brittan pub and has a dog with eight previous owners. They could not get on with Ben. They rounded up 3,000 rabbits one day, him and Ben, the earth really did move. The radio documentary on Ross’s life was mixed with a 1947 recording and included words like queer thing and gay time. We have moved on. The local Maori names put forward for the districts were just too hard to recognize at the time so Pigburn, Cowburn and many others like them were substituted and remain to this day. They still pan for gold down there by the way.

The second radio segment is about a Chinese family, there are thousand here now. Thirteen years ago they imported 1500 tea plants, ten months in quarantine and there were 150 yellowing plants left, from them one and a half million tea plants were carefully tended and the resultant product is about to go to export. 500 grams fetched $44,000 at auction recently. It is used for special ritual occasions and is very prized. Tea here has the potential to be a huge NZ export. Chinese are welcome in New Zealand, you can see why.





















Text and photos copyright © 2010 Dave & Carole Walker

Dave Walker


Last edited by Rich on 31/1/2010, 6:43 am; edited 1 time in total


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Lee121 on 25/1/2010, 6:56 pm

Fantastic.....but dont get too comfortable over there.....we do want ya back!!!!


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 26/1/2010, 4:58 am

How nice is that then.

Thanks, As Arney says 'I be back'


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Nick on 26/1/2010, 11:11 pm

Sounds like you're having a great time over there, enjoy, there's nothing like getting 'home', I remember falling in love with grey old England when I got back from living in Africa.

As they say in the Wizard of Oz 'there's no place like home'

But as Lee says 'but dont get too comfortable over there.....we do want ya back' ......and Lee is the Southmids 'Dorothy' after all


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 27/1/2010, 5:57 am

With a request like that Nick/Lee I am thinking of cutting short the visit!~

Hey...Got the B back......Body work a lot sadder than I remembered and my
dear Daughter a bit disheartened however the B should make the tour ok to the South Island MG Club national. Going to the first MG meet tonight so will catch up with old friends, nice.

Not sure what the future holds as she does not have the time, money or know how
to keep it with two children to look after. Husband not a petrol head like us.

Tanya has had the car for well over twenty years and it is so hard to part with it.

Nick, you are right, coming into Uk from abroad has a thrill like no other....the feeling not easily explained.......


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Lee121 on 27/1/2010, 8:15 am

uk kiwis wrote:With a request like that Nick/Lee I am thinking of cutting short the visit!~

Got the B back......Body work a lot sadder than I remember

Going to the first MG meet tonight so will catch up with old friends, nice.

a. Noooo dont do that......just keep us up to date
b. It's the same for all of us.....age....
c. Must have pics!!!!


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Lee121 on 27/1/2010, 8:17 am

Nick wrote: Lee is the Southmids 'Dorothy' after all

Nick


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Nick on 27/1/2010, 9:29 am

took you 2 minutes to spot it


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  daved on 28/1/2010, 12:35 am

I'm so glad you are having a great time! Are you still ex-pat New Zealanders or ex-pat Brits............I'm confused

Now all this mention of pics and tottie in the same thread and all we get are pics of old cars. C'mon Dave, get your act together

Sorry to hear about the poor old B. Maybe you should bring it back to the UK and have it as a project car

Continue to have a great time won't you!

Scott the Scot!
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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 28/1/2010, 9:02 pm

Thanks Dave

Now I have had a chance to drive the B and look her over. Well, it does not seem to bad at all. We went to the club last night but on the way back the ignition ligt came on so a new alternator I guess. Did the mid week run today. No takers for the write up so guess who said ok......?

Will send this ASAP and save double dipping.

See what I can do Dave to spice up your life.....ha will have to use a telephoto lens
as I am a bit shy..ha ha...

ps: don,t want to get my face slapped!


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Midweek Gallivant - Thursday 28th January

Post  Rich on 31/1/2010, 6:41 am

The MG Marque of Friendship was never more in evidence to two returning Kiwis to Aotearoa as on this midweek journey through Auckland’s stunning rural countryside the vivid blue of the roadside Agapanthis gave another welcome. Sadly, daughter’s 1965 MGB which had been laid up for a couple of years and now back on the road after an overhaul still showed her age with a faulty alternator. It was non-runner for this trip.

Bill and Raywyn Tutty met all for a briefing at the Botanical Gardens. The visitors entrance hall and surrounds up to a very high International standard and presentation. We chattered to Danish Rassmussen and could have been anywhere in Europe at this point. The rally run was plotted to include Alfriston, Ardmore, Hunua, past Camp Adair, a pleasant memory for countless young New Zealanders then on through Ramarama and the quaint rural outpost that is Patumahoe. The market gardens we passed along the way smelling of wholesome goodness. New Zealand’s fresh food has no other equal.

Our first of two destinations was Wright’s Water Gardens. We paid the reduced fee of seven dollars ( there is some advantage to being retired, everything is cheaper. Except surgery that is!) Situated at the site of the Mauku Waterfall. Years ago at the top of the waterfall a water wheel provided power for a flax mill, dismantled in 1869. With the area covered in native bush it was a wonderful picnic and courting spot for local people who had made a home here. The hard rock quarry left an ideal landscape for today’s pleasant paths, water pools and extensive Water Lilly collection. An Oasis for little Guppy fish, eels and frogs. The wonderful Dragonfly flit about. There is a large café and tourist shop, we marvelled at the hidden beauty of a Paua shell, who would believe such vivid colours lying beneath its crust?

Our final visit was to Neville Thompson and his Alpaca farm. Neville owns a 1987 MGB. The fine Alpaca with their proud and attractive nobel heads come from Chile and Peru and date back 4,000 years. It has been only six years since the farm was begun with a single ram and wether, now the holding has thirty-four animals. It has not been easy and on one occasion a vet had to be flown to Chile from Australia to check a proposed import to New Zealand. It was a four-day journey by lorry to the port in Chile then a flight or ship to Australia more vets fees and Quarantine then finally to New Zealand. Expensive!

When a ewe becomes pregnant she arranges a ‘Spit Off’; that is to say she spits at the male for a time (now that must be more amicable than a divorce). There is a ram on the farm but if all else fails ‘Squeals on Wheels’ are willing to step in with a mating service. Civilised is the Alpaca!
The male looks to be on the outer but consider this: Females five hundred dollars, males up to seventy thousand. Well! The fine wool fibre is hollow and thirty micron a contrast is the human hair at seventy micron.

Rawe Haere (Nice trip)











Text and photos copyright © 2010 Dave & Carole Walker

Dave Walker


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 1/2/2010, 7:49 am

Would like to add, that the Water Garden article was written as a report for the Auckland MGCC magazine so naturally has a NZ flavour.

Since then we have picked up the B. It is a challenging experience to drive and one has to remember to keep plenty of distance in front. Rather like driving a lorry after the F but oh so enjoyable. The gear wirrings and transmission noise (natural with the 'B') make music to the ears, lovely.

We have also visited a friend who has a vast collection of Automobilia in a purpose built double story garage so this along with Hampton Downs visit will appear ASAP

Am, spending quite a bit of spare time tidying up the MG as you can imagine, after two or three years idle.


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Lee121 on 1/2/2010, 7:19 pm

Great news that the B is back on the road.....let's be having some pics of it and you guys!!!....happy NZ motoring


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 2/2/2010, 7:15 am

Thanks......previous blog Puds..

We are due to attend a beach noggin at a city location tonight but I have to tell you the weather has broken although still warm and humid. Hope to take a few shots of 'Mossie' as daughter calls the 'B' then.


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 12/2/2010, 9:48 am

Must say the weather has been rather hot here, it is strange how we live in one world but the seasons are so different?

Still involved to a greater extent with motoring events. I mentioned the Scimitar city beach meet. Well, that went very nicely and many old friends and past members turned up in our honour. One guy brought the only Sabre existing in the Southern hemisphere, a six cylinder Zephyr motored example. He also owns a rare Scimitar roadster but keeps that in Australia where they winter over. We watched the ferries depart for Aucklands various Islands and a couple of cruise ships slip by. Some of us cooked a BBQ tea. Tamaki Drive is a pretty waterfront road that travels out to the 'Posh' suburbs past a Maori Marae as some of their land that has been handed back to them, well, this beach is on that road two miles from the city.

The MGCC held a country display of cars just outside of Auckland where we attended a small food, wine and music gathering. The food here changes all the time with immigrants arriving. So there was paella cooking in those huge fry pans also Italian food, Kiwi nosh and several other foreign offerings, nice that.

We took our lunch in the adjacent log cabin tea rooms and again had Italian food, Antipasto, of a very high standard. This area is also exclusive and has Aucklands only Polo ground.
A good selection of MG's attended and we chatted to several ex pat Uk folk who are now happily living here.

A friend of mine has a newish house in a bush suburb here and as he has collected a large amount of auto memorabilia housed in a purpose built two storied garage come museum alongside the house. It is packed with various overalls, helmets and photos of the past and several interesting cars. His interest is speedway and pride of place is taken up with 76, an Offenhauser engined midget racing car that first saw the light of day in the USA in 1949. It was then brought to New Zealand and raced with huge success for years.

This weekend sees us at Ellerslie. This is the premier concours event of the year and brings out some stunning cars, some of them in the Master class. Ellerslie is a horse racing track right in the middle of Auckland and of the garden and flower variety so the cars look fantastic when on display beneath the impressive Grand stands.


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Rich on 12/2/2010, 10:00 am

We need pics

Good to hear from you again... Keep the blog running!

Rich


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  Rich on 22/2/2010, 11:10 pm

And HERE are the pics as requested! Dave has been busy... Far too many to post here, hence the link instead! Cool

Rich




PS Dave, I'm not sure if you're getting my return emails. I've replied to you twice now but your last message said you hadn't heard from me! Suspect


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Re: UK Kiwis back in NZ!

Post  uk kiwis on 24/2/2010, 7:04 am

Hallo Richard/All

No...have received no replies. Wondered what is\was going on?

Use my whitfield(number) hotmail address. I am sending from Another computer
that I cannot check replies on, that may be the problem.


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