Best part of the day was banging into my foster brother on his way to work, after just passing his work place and regretting not catching up. Great to see you Tony.
Yes it's true. The Hawkes Bay does have sunny days. Just this time of the year, the sun takes a while to warm the frost away. Was heading out of Havelock North on Middle Rd, and it was cold, which for some reason makes me want to pee. Must do some research and figure why that happens. Anyway, seems Middle Rd is the place to live if you've got a bit of dosh. Some very nice houses out that way, all on large blocks of land, it lovely plantings. Trouble is everywhere it looked like it might just be possible to hide away for some relief, there was a mansion hidden behind the
vegetation, and all the other places were exposed to the school buses coming along the road...... It's not easy being a weak bladdered cycle tourist.
The 50km Tim told me about to Waipukurau, we're really more like 60km, but easy riding through beautiful farmland, with only farm traffic and the odd Downers vehicle, with only the last 7km on the main road.....nice. Waipukurau offered a chance to get my glasses tightened up at Shattkys, and to chat to the staff there, while Tim was dealing with patients.
Decided to grab a sandwich, and chatted to a local St John Paramedic, and then witnessed two things that really surprised me. A middle aged guy, a little shabbily dressed walked past where I was sitting. This is Waipukurau, so didn't seem so unusual, with farm workers, road workers etc about. What was amazing though was that this guy stopped at a rubbish bin and pulled out a McDonald's bag, and searched through it for food. Then a lady who had just walked past him, turned and followed him down the street, tapped him on the shoulder and gave him some money, dragged him in to a bakery, and made sure he spent it on food. Wow. An inspiring act on spontaneous generosity. Awesome to see, but scary that this needs to happen at all.
Porangahau was the goal for today, but kms were passing quickly, and a local farmer suggested Wimbledon Pub had nice accommodation, food and hosts, and only 15ish kms further, so headed that way at 2.30. Warning to all parents. Do Not feed your kids "Kick Energy" bars. I picked up a couple in Pak n Sav, and ate one at Porangahau. Within minutes I was hyped, and the 15kms zoomed by. It did suggest on the packet :" should not be eaten if you wish to sleep within 3 to 4 hours". Certainly gave me a Kick. Stopped off at the longest place name in the world for a photo, but still made quick time to Wimbledon. Hardly saw a vehicle, the road was great, and the scenery stunning farmland country. It's sad to think that the vast majority of NZers will never see this area, as they zoom down the main highway. Please folks. Do consider a detour off the main route next time you are traveling. You don't know what you are missing.
Local farmer was right. Wimbledon Tavern. Nice accommodation, great food and lovely hosts.