Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Slow Food and Fast Friends in the Bay of Plenty


Universal themes, delicious food and fast friends, and how lucky we are to have both in Tauranga, about three hours by car southeast of Auckland. We were greeted at our efficiency motel by Hannah and Logan holding a big basket of food from the farmers market. The freshest eggs, greens, zucchini, eggplant, and bread. Plus a bottle of NZ merlot and a bouquet of manuka.

We met these two at a campsite on the South Island six years ago and kept bumping into them at other campsites down the road. We shared our search results for organic food shops and became friends the way only parallel travelers can.

When our dear pal Selwyn moved from Auckland, H&L kindly offered to look after the Rover and Selwyn dropped it here, where it's been for too many pandemic years (we should have returned in 2021). Now the Rover's in the shop getting a last look before we hit the road and it's taking a wee bit longer than expected. In the meantime we've been delightfully fed and watered. 

But wait there's more: in the space of 2019-2023 a new family member arrived. Who can imagine life without sweet naughty Margot, who managed to steal our hearts too.

And also: our oysters! 

At lunch right on the beach in Papamoa we saw fresh oysters on the menu, and Logan and I said yes please. When he passed a forkful of raw oyster to Margot, she made a little sound of unease and pushed the thing back on the fork.

But when he tried again with just a small piece, we could see her interest developing. 


 Now she's got a bib full of shells...

...and that's how we came to be pouring the oyster liquor from each shell into the expectant mouth of this engaging little person (she tried to take my actual oysters, too, but we have our limits).

Her first words to us were a big secret to share: mommy has a baby in her tummy!

Iced coffees at Papamoa Beach

Roast chicken smells like welcome

Logan's an IT expert and he's telling me to ditch Blogger and start posting on Substack. I'm migrating the blog there and will email you a link when it's live. Thanks, Logan.

More home cooking from the pizza people

Auckland to Tauranga



  1. Love love loved having you, you MUST come back on your way home PLEASE xxxx

  2. Just got caught up with your journey. So many new adventures and a brand new baby friend! Thanks so much for taking us along. Great pics and even better food. Take care of yourselves. Sean & George

  3. You know we'll be back for more Tauranga love, Hannah. S&G: really good to see you here. Keep happy and well. xx