Just as the title says, it was a crappy day on all fronts. We awoke to rain which decided it was going to settle in for the day. Di woke with what she thought was a nasty ear infection but we decided to go ahead with our plans and drive further up the coast to Whitianga.
On our way we did a bypass and went to the ferry on the south side of the estuary across from the town of Whitianga. The ferry takes five minutes to cross the estuary but only takes foot passengers. This meant all cars have to drive the 35k route back around the estuary to get to Whitianga. Bit of a bugger but a lovely car ride.
By now, Di’s ear ache is getting rather intense with pain like a knife being shoved through her right ear. She was getting more miserable so the decision was made to take her to see a doctor. As luck would have it we arrived at a doctors surgery in Whitianga just as they were closing. Fraser, Wilma and the receptionist were having bets as to what Di was suffering from as it wasn’t like no ear infection they had seen before. It turns out it was not her lucky day and she had a case of Shingles. Loaded up with drugs it was decided that Di and Fras head back to Tauranga a day early as she needed her rest. Wilma decided to continue on to Coromandel. It was very disappointing to finish our trip this way as we were all enjoying ourselves and one another’s company. We have extracted a promise from Wilma to come and visit us in Canada next summer where we get to show her our fabulous backyard.
The other disappointment was that we had planned to go to The Lost Springs in Whitianga for half a day. The mineral-rich, Geo-Thermal water of The Lost Spring is truly unique. Rising from 667m below the surface through a small crack in the bedrock, the water emerges completely sterile – fossilized after 16,000 years below ground. It’s such a rare & delicate water source, that for several generations it was considered lost until The Lost Spring founder Alan Hopping finally rediscovered it in 1989. Oh well, it just means we have to come back again which is no burden.
On our way back to Tauranga we stopped off at Waihi to check on the Oceana Gold Mine which has been going there for nearly 25 years. Di’s grandfather worked as an underground miner there back in the 1930’s when it was all underground. The Mine is now open cut and underground. There was a large slip there about two years ago and they have finally worked out a plan as to how to repair the wall and get the open cut operational again.
We were back in Tauranga about 5.00pm by which time Di was keen to go and inspect the inside of her eyelids and let the pain medication have its way with her. A quiet night indeed.