Episode 106 – 12,000 Mile Diversion to New Zealand- plus 12 miles walking around Auckland


Dear Rosie, Lauren, Stanley, Jake, Rowan and Maisie,

Nanny and Bobl took time off from walking around England and  a country the size of Wales, to fly  to New Zealand and attend Omi’s funeral at Lady Allum Care Home Chapel in Milford. Omi, Nanny’s Mum died on June 12th . Fortunately Donald, Sarah, Stan and Rowan had managed to fly out earlier, to see her. In meeting Stan and Rowan she was so pleased to have eventually met all twelve of her Great Grandchildren.

This Episode  is dedicated to the memory of Margot Gibb. Nanny’s Mum.

Omi Mum IMG_0570[6051]

Nanny and Bobl flew out to attend her funeral, during which visit,  several walks were taken with family and friends around and about Auckland in tribute to her.  She is at rest now and hopefully watching over the rest of Bobl’s exploration of whichever coastline he fetches up on. Like The Waitemata Harbour below…


Resuming my acquaintance with Rangitoto on Takapuna Beach





Start of walk with Marion, (one of the first people we met when we fetched up in Auckland some 46  years ago)   –  from her home with Gray, in Ponsonby  – joining the dedicated footpath under the Harbour Bridge through the Westhaven  Marina where their boat Ponsonby Scow is moored – which we visited for inspection and rest –  below. Below.



Top right- Marion and Marilyn planning to board Ponsonby Scow – sister ship to the star of  newly released film “Adrift” – both built by Gray Dixon, Marion’s husband  – with a general view of some of the Marina  – below too…DSC_3094


…Continuing the dedicated route around the old dockyards…


 Maori Concrete Canoe Legends and exhortations to enjoy your walk along the West Haven Promenade and a redundant viewing platform for the Harbour Bridge….



Marion and Marilyn up aloft in SiloPark with grand harbour views and what used to be Wynyard Wharf when I was last here many years ago….




More views of modern Auckland waterfront where I thought there used to be ferries – but it’s now all changed! With a Skytower too!



Jacob’s Ladder  – ascended – nearing the end of our probably 8 mile circuit  and the classic  Harbour Bridge silhouette on the horizon.

Thank you Marion and Gray for your hospitality and a memorable walk. We look forward to seeing you in Shropshire to go steam train spotting and walking!




Sunday lunch at Daikoku in Takapuna, a favourite Gibb haunt for 20 years. The preparation of the food is all part of the performance by the Japanese staff.

A great meal enjoyed by Tricia, Janice, Graeme, Sharleen, Liam, Malcolm, Lisa, James, Connor, Ryan, Steven, Jill, Scarlett, Loughlin, Marilyn and Bobl. All 6 Kiwi cousins in one place!


Next on the agenda a visit to Takapuna Beach with Tricia. Takapuna Hospital – well known for being the birthplace of Little Uncle Andy in 1978.

But first of all – refreshments at Takapuna Café and Store with Tricia


And then a walk round Takapuna Bay….


With the tide going out. But the rain held off, it is winter after all. Many thanks to Tricia, we couldn’t have done it all without your help and support. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.

An enjoyable bonus of the trip was catching up with old Kiwi friends as well as family.

Murray and Sue chauffeured us on tours of Mt Eden, Epsom and Three Kings…… taking in their new home, morning coffee breaks, lunch and even a bit of culture at Pah Homestead  and Gallery and of course the viewing of Murray’s own artwork. Thank you for looking after us so well.

And the Rickits……… You never expected to see the reluctant flier Bobl again in Auckland! Despite 12,000 miles and years of absence at various times, we can always pick up exactly where we were and have room for the 30 additions to our immediate families from our first meeting in 1972. Thank you Neil and Sue, and thank you Jane, Andy and Mia for keeping the friendship going into the next 2 generations.







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