Welcome to tales of my stitching life, home, family and friends.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Friends from the South

Our friends from Dunedin, Merilyn and Colin, have been to stay for a couple of nights.  You know what that means – my sewing room must be tidied up!  My Bernina sewing machine is generally left on top of the sewing cabinet, ready for go at a moment’s notice.  But no, that won’t do with guests sleeping in the room.  So I pulled the little lever to make the machine drop down, and closed the cabinet up tight.  That doesn’t happen very often, I can tell you!

We had recently purchased a bed settee sofa for an occasion such as this, and thought we should really have a trial run with it, to make sure it worked properly.  And make the bed up.  My goodness, the bed is low – just as well it is only for a couple of nights.

P2260001 Bed settee all ready for the guest, with Maple Leaf quilt on top

They arrived carrying all sorts of goodies – it was just like Christmas!  Beer to share with Robin, a bottle of wine for dinner, cheese, grapes and bikkies for nibbles, and even a couple of hot roast chickens.  With the food I’d prepared as well, we certainly wouldn’t be going hungry.  Merilyn and I go back many years, and have been friends since those long ago school days, and I was one of her bridesmaids.  Matron of Honour, actually, as I was already married by then.  There is always plenty to talk about when we get together, and it’s just like we have never been apart.

P2260003 Me and Merilyn

Colin and Robin had plenty to talk about too, both are very interested in sports.  Muffy jumped up on Colin’s lap and settled down.  We told him he should feel honoured – Muffy is very choosy who she cosies up to.

P2260006   Colin talking to Muffy

We took our visitors out and about around the region.  They like licorice too and didn’t know that we have a factory and shop right here in Levin.  Of course we both ended up buying some.

P2270007 At RJ’s Licorice Factory

After lunch we continued our tiki tour going northwards and stopped at Foxton to show them the deMolen Windmill.  Then on to the Moutoa Sluice Gates, built in 1962 to  protect over 100 sq km of farmland from the risk of flooding.  The sluice gates cause much of the river flow to take a shortcut, bypassing 30km of low capacity river channel, instead being directed down the 10kmm long Moutoa Floodway.  The sluice gates are a bit like the ones making up the Thames Barrier, I told them, but very much smaller of course.  Colin in particular was quite impressed by this clever piece of engineering.

P2270019 Moutoa Sluice gates

Next stop was to see  was the Te Apiti Wind Farm.    The turning blades had quite a hypnotic quality about them as we drove nearer and nearer, finally reaching the lookout on Saddle Road, north of the Manawatu Gorge.  This is an ideal spot for a wind farm, with the Manawatu gorge acting as a wind funnel, creating consistently high wind speeds.  Parking in the car park, we could hear the swish, swish of the blades as we stood just under a huge wind turbine.  I could just imagine the blades flying through the air and decapitate us.  (Too much imagination, says Robin).

P2270033 Just one of the many huge turbines

Merilyn was quite spooked by all the swishing blades.  The wind power increased in speed at one stage and the noise and speed of the blades above us increased dramatically.  She got quite a fright and wanted nothing more than to get in the car and away from the huge turbines surrounding us.

P2270038I don’t want to stay here, says Merilyn

We needed a cuppa to calm her down so drove to the Bridge Cafe, at Ballance, just over the long bridge at the Woodville end of the Manawatu Gorge.  This is a place I have long wanted to stop at, but we always seem to be towing the caravan behind us as we pass by.  We enjoyed our coffees and slices in a nice shady area of the garden.  Then we climbed back into the car, drove through the Manawatu Gorge, and headed home.  They enjoyed their trip, we are happy to say, as they visited places they had never been to before, or even heard of.  Even driving through the Manawatu Gorge was a first for both of them, surprisingly. 


Colin and Merilyn at the Bridge Cafe

.Sadly, their time with us came to an end and they packed up their belongings to continue on their holiday.  It was lovely having them to stay, and hopefully it won’t be too long before we get together again.  Merilyn and I both have major birthdays this year, and I am hoping we can organise a weekend away somewhere together.  We’re working on the plans.

P2280067 Goodbye and safe travels

And here’s a test for you.  Merilyn gave me a copy of an old photo from when we were schoolgirls enjoying a holiday at the beach.  Can you tell which girl is her and which one is me?  Hint – there is not a grey hair to be seen back then!
P2280066 Bevy of Beach Belles


nestki said...

Is that you on the far left and Merrilyn on the far right?

Janice said...

How lovely having special friends visit. BTW, I love your blog header.

Jenny said...

You are almost correct Nestki.
Merilyn is on the far left - with her first perm. Next to her is her lovely Mum, then two young SILs, and finally me on the far right.