I suddenly zipped off to Ohope for two weeks, and returned last night. Ohope has been voted New Zealanders' Most Loved Beach. It doesn't have golden sands, or trendy cafes that face the sea, or water that's truly accessible for proper swimming - the breakers are scary, but it's so nice to just wander along this long, long beach and meeting dogs and their owners, and seeing anglers, and nodding 'hello' to folk, and watching kids boogie boarding, and admiring Whale Island....
On my way back home yesterday, I passed through the little country town of Bulls. As my five readers know by now, Bulls is one of my favourite places because they smirk at themselves over the name 'Bulls'
Bulls is on Highway No 1 in the North Island. They've gone all Christmassy, with real Christmas trees tied to lampposts. Sadly, I wondered how long those trees would stay there before being stolen. They also have seats that folk can sit on and move around to follow the shade.
above: Ohope Beach
PS: talk about topical ... I've just seen an article on Stuff about the street decorations in Bulls! Apparently the decs have been donated because Bulls didn't think they would be able to afford to decorate their street this year.