On the road to retirement – Sunday 29th January 2012

To Mercury Bay! John, avid readers will remember has been reading the diaries of Captain Cook and his travels discovering New Zealand and Australia. You will be pleased to know he has read Robinson Crusoe and The Origin of Species (by Charles Darwin), after this, but Cook’s diaries have been pertinent to much of our travels and today even more so!
Mercury Bay was a prime objective! To observe the transit of Mercury across the sun from this new land in order to establish the longitude of New Zealand and as a consequence where you could find it again on a follow up voyage.
Our prime objective was simply to find a pleasant place to lay our heads. As has become our habit, we choose our destination just a few days prior to our need. This way we are constantly able to adjust our plans to suit. Whilst the location is usually spot on, the actual establishment is pure luck. We choose through availability and price!
Atearorea Lodge is just outside Witianga. It feels like a cross breed, somewhere between a motel and a bed and breakfast. I cannot fault the friendly and helpful owners. Our room is just big enough to house two enormous single beds and the en suite. There’s s small cupboard for the fridge, kettle and a shelf for clothes.
I’m beginning to wonder why motels and any accomodation do not realize that it is good to unpack our clothes. I really do not want to live out of a suit case. Simple drawers, maybe a few hangers – they make me feel at home.
Down the corridor is a communal lounge with another, much larger cupboard, which is a kitchen, but although it has a fridge/freezer for guest use, it only has two portable style hot plates and a microwave, and no sharp knives.
It is inhabited by old people at present. Mostly retired couples on holiday but the lovely granny character who welcomes us is very kind. However, she adds to my feeling that I have finally made it into retirement.
Wandering around town, we stumble upon The Carvery, and enjoy a well cooked roast dinner for under $20 each.