Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Now that was quick!

Yesterday afternoon I decided to check the internet to see whether I could purchase the spacers for the back of the Clothes Dryer which had been misplaced since our move.  We needed these to hang the dryer on the wall above the washing machine. In the meantime we had the dryer sitting on the top of the front loader Washing Machine. Not a good idea really.  Well we have virtually unpacked everything now and still not managed to find them.  What to do? Right check Fisher and Paykel’s website and see whether it is possible to still get them.  Yes and they have them in stock.  Great.  We also needed a support for the door rack in the refrigerator, yes they have that too, good. 

By this time it was about 3pm in the afternoon and the goods had to come from Botany north of Auckland.  Never mind they were ordered and paid for by credit card, nowhere did it state how long before we could expect delivery.


This morning at 9.30am the door bell rang and there was our parcel. How good is that for service?  The Dryer is now up in its rightful place above the washer.

Thank you Fisher and Paykel for a job well done even if you have sold out to Haier.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Tongariro coughs once more.

We have been home barely a week when news hit the airwaves about Mt Tongariro erupting once again. The mountain crossing had not been re-opened very long after the last eruption just 2 months ago. With the beautiful weather today many tramper’s including a school group had ventured up onto the mountain to do 19.5km crossing only to receive an unforgettable experience. Unfortunately the Tongariro Crossing is a big tourism draw card for the region and will affect many businesses in the area. Time will tell as to how long the crossing will remain closed this time.


Since our return home last week we have been busy as beavers helping friends with last week-ends National Rose show here in Levin. We were presented with some of the exhibits after the show for our efforts. Some exhibitors had travelled from as far away as Invercargill in the South and Whangerei in the North. We have managed to grab a couple of days to ourselves to do some more unpacking but we still have a way to go. Along the way we have been making some plans about alterations we would like to make in the near future and what we are going to do with the garden.  A visit to Palmers Garden Centre at Plimmerton has resolved some of the gardening idea’s.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012


Hope you have a lovely day, sorry we are unable to be with you on your side of the world.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Job Done (Well almost)

clip_image001 Is there room for me? The camp cats in front of the fire.

Last night was the quietest we have experienced since starting our tour of duty at Tongariro Holiday Park. We only had 7 motorhomes in and no cabins booked, although that could have changed. We had 6 foreign tourist come in wanting cheap accommodation with ensuite. We have 4 ensuite’s but they were too expensive. After about half an hour offering them different options they eventually left but by this time it was getting late so I don’t give them much hope of finding anything better this side of Taupo.

clip_image002We have never seen one of these before. Anyone know what this moth is? clip_image003Might give you a better idea of the size. Sorry about the quality of the photo.

As we come to the end of our tour of duty at THP the weather has deteriorated closing the Tongariro Crossing for today and possibly the next few days. We had a couple of tourists booked for this morning but the tour operator cancelled at the last moment in the interest of safety. Of course then we refunded their monies and they were considering their options whether to drive up to the carpark on the off chance that there were views without the clouds.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Variety is the spice of life.

Our time here at Tongariro Holiday Park has been far from boring. Beside the usual cleaning and servicing of cabins there is laundry and window cleaning. One chore we won’t have is lawn mowing as the grass doesn’t seem to grow very fast around here probably due to all the frosts we have been experiencing.

clip_image001Tongariro Holiday Park's kitchen block and kiddies play area.

One unusual request was for me to travel with an English tramping group in their mini bus to Ketetahi hut. There I dropped them off for an overnight tramp around Mt’s Tongariro and Ngaurahoe and brought their bus and trailer back to the camp for safe keeping. Late the following day I drove to Mangatepopo hut, some 20km away where I picked the tramper’s up. They dropped me back at camp before carrying on to their next overnight stay at the tramper’s hut behind The Chateau. After tramping around Mt Ruapehu the next day they are off to the South Island to tramp the Able Tasman.

clip_image002Power sites at Tongariro Holiday Park.

Last night the motorhome side of the camp was full even though one booking failed to materialise. Along with 3 cabins, 2 tents and 4 non power campervans as we had run out of powered sites the camp was abuzz last night. The kitchen rubbish etc. required clearing at 10pm to avoid a complete disaster after the breakfast session this morning.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

What a chilly start!

Yesterday there was a hint of sulphur in the air all day from Mt Tongariro as we set about the days work. It was another busy day with lots of cleaning and plenty more bookings and arrivals. The Tongariro Crossing seems to be the big draw card here at this time of year. We booked 14 for today’s crossing which is on average a 7-8 hour hike over a mountain track taking in the Emerald lakes. The track starts at 1150m rising to 1886m at the Red crater descending to 750m at the finish. For those real enthusiast’s there is a 2 hour diversion to the summit of Mt Ngauruhoe but this is recommended for experienced trampers' only.

clip_image001Quite a decent frost for November.

This morning we awoke to find the surroundings all covered in heavy frost. It was –40C in Waiouru so I’m picking it was probably the same here(and it’s November, roll on Summer) . At least we are going to have a beautiful sunny day to follow.

clip_image002Bet it was cold in there this morning.clip_image003Our car was completely covered in ice. A shock to the system.

Monday, 5 November 2012

All in a days work

To those friends trying to contact us we have no mobile coverage here at all although a few km’s up the road it may be possible. Any internet is via satellite and consequently very expensive.

clip_image001Tongariro Holiday Park Manager’s house and reception area.

After a lot of bookings comes a busy day cleaning up. Besides the usual rubbish, recycle came 7 units with a total of 22 beds. Luckily most of the units were only new pillow cases and a vacuum and dust. However the Ensuite unit was a complete linen change, bathroom clean along with the usual dust and vacuum.

clip_image002Tongariro Holiday Park's ablution block. The old single men's quarters from the hydro power construction.

So far arrivals today have been light on the ground apart from a company with four cabins booked this week and next. They will be doing some maintenance work on the Tongariro Crossing which was partially damaged in the eruption a few months ago. We are not holding our breath, most of the bookings come in at the end of the day when we are finally relaxing for the evening. Dot has just had a phone call from Queenstown I-site for a cabin tomorrow night. Yeah right, they will need a set of wings to get here in time maybe.

Watch this space.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Phew, what a day!

The day started off really quiet what with the Tongariro Crossing being cancelled due to inclement weather. We did have some bookings on the schedule but these failed to eventuate until after 8pm when quite a few casual bookings decided to arrive all at the same time. Talk about chaos! A booked tour party of 12 wanted the room arrangements changed and 2 of them required bedding all adding to the mayhem that had broken loose. It was well after 10pm before we finally had everybody billeted or parked up.

While all this was going on a camper complained of loss of electricity. Upon checking, the “Wicked campervan” was found not to have the obligatory Electrical Certificate of Fitness so the power connection was withdrawn and no further action taken.

We both collapsed into bed exhausted.

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Hi ho, hi ho, It’s off to work we go.

We have not even been in our new home a week before we set off for Tongariro Holiday Park. With Gypsy Rover safely parked up at our new home we set off in the car.A late request was made to relieve the owners of the camp while they took a brief holiday. Apparently their regular reliever had double booked himself and was unable to do the job. The trip up to Tongariro went smoothly with clear blue skies and stunning mountain scenery once we reached the Desert Road. Mount Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe looked magnificent still heavily coated in snow and not a cloud in sight.


Mt Ruapehu on a beautifully clear day.


Mt Ngauruhoe.

We arrived at the camp site around lunch time and after being shown our quarters and a quick lunch it was time to get to grips with everything around the site. Forty cabins, 2 chalets, 15 campervan power sites and 26 tent sites plus a huge kitchen/dining room and the usual toilet/shower facilities. As well as this there is a large games room with TV and Internet facilities which so far has been well patronised. The first evening and we thought all hell had broken loose with campers arriving all evening. Luckily Greg and Donna, the owners, were still here to guide us through the maze.


Tongariro Holiday Park.


Our home away from Home in Tongariro

Friday morning and we were in sole charge. We have a German lady, Tina, to help with cleaning chores and with 3 cabins vacated overnight there was plenty to do. Even the games room needed some TLC with chippie and biscuit crumbs all over the floor. The afternoon was quiet but the evening saw another busy period. Talk about baptism by fire, we were certainly pushed coping with the unfamiliar computer booking system. To add more confusion the majority of our guests are from Germany, France, Spain and Italy and have English as a second language which at times is very limited.


Flash advertising.

Saturday has seen a complete change in the weather with low cloud and rain. Due to the inclement conditions the tour operator on the Tongariro Crossing has cancelled any tours today and we are just awaiting his report on tomorrow’s status. This has upset the plans of quite a few foreign tourists who want to do the Crossing but have a limited time frame. As I sit here writing this blog the cloud cover has dropped lower and the rain is now quite heavy so it will be snowing up on the crossing. Brrrrr, I think I will light the fire.