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  • Writer's pictureTim and Lindsey

Coach, Tunnels and Guns – what a collection! (Day 111)

We meet the most amazing people when staying at Airbnbs. We highly recommend it. You find out about the culture of a place, places to see and get to know lovely people. So a day coaching, going down tunnels and seeing guns.

It’s so lovely that I can still coach when travelling. This morning I was coaching at 8am (7pm UK time) and our video session was was clear both visually and auditory even though we were 11,500 miles away. I do feel so lucky, and the session had lots of laughter and insights. Afterwards, Tim and I spent the rest of the morning pottering, playing with the cats here and booking a few more Airbnbs for the next week. (Feel free to use this link and you get £25 credit and we get £15 credit

- so win-win all round!

Eventually we ventured out in the afternoon to Hokatika, famous for its NZ Jade and found a recommended café. We both had a pleasant snack and coffee, however sadly the service was a let-down. The waitress was so miserable, we tried our best to put a smile on her face. Such a shame and not professional. Not sure about her vacuuming the café an hour before closing! What’s that all about!

Needing to get a few steps in, my aim for 10k per day was not looking optimistic, we searched and found a great track called Tunnel Terrace Walk 20 mins drive away. Both the entrance and exits were through miners’ tailrace tunnels and then the track meandered through rain forest and old gold workings. Such a peaceful place, a hidden gem that not even our hosts had known about.

Our host Debora very kindly offered us dinner, so we got back in time. We were having Whitebait, quite a delicacy here. I didn’t know until today that the name whitebait is a generic one, and applies to myriad tiny fish all over the world. The NZ Whitebait is very different to the UK version. They are much smaller, averaging 45-55 mm in length compared to UK at 50-100 mm and over double the price.

We do meet such wonderful people using Airbnb. Debora and Brian are such talented people. Both of them are Pistol Black Powder shooting champions for New Zealand. Brian showed us his collection of guns including those that they both competed with. He has an original gun from 1863 where the user needed to load gunpowder and shot into the revolving chamber before bullets were widely used. There was his first rifle from when he was aged 10 shooting rabbit (I think this was his favourite). As well as shooting, he made himself 3 replica copies of a 400 year old Japanese Matchlock Pistol. They were beautifully made. Such talent.

He also showed us a few of the many medals they have both won in a range of shooting categories. As well as being world class shooters, Brian is also a Rock ‘n Roll champion dancer and Debora makes the most amazing cakes, knits and crochets as well. What a couple and the nicest couple as well. They have treated us like part of the family and we have just spent the evening chatting away.

Debora also has helped many young mothers with breast feeding advice and she shared a lovely poem she wrote years ago when one of her sons were young and has allowed me to share with you: My Baby Once I said I would never Nurse beyond these years But still a baby in my eyes Yet others did not see You taught me how to follow Instead of leading you Lead on Lead in my baby I will follow you

A delightful evening with a delightful couple.

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