After our huge night out at Hobbiton, we really needed the next sea day to recover. It was good to relax and take the day as it came. We listened to our favorite speaker, Ken Rees, talk about the next ports on our schedule throughout New Zealand. He had to squeeze them all in at once since this would be the only sea day for a while.
It was Academy Awards day and we got to watch them in the afternoon instead of the late hour we normally would have at home. Our evening show highlighted movies of the past and ended our day with the anticipation of one of our favorite ports in the morning, Napier.
Napier is a town that suffered a devastating earthquake in 1931 that literally leveled the whole place. Perhaps leveled isn’t a good description since the way the fault line shifted the earth actually rose seven feet and created 9,000 new acres of dry land. When the rebuilding was planned, the committee decided to do it in an art deco style that was popular in Europe in the 1920s. What resulted was a unique town with a passion for the style of the 20s and 30s.
Vintage cars lined the dock as we came down the gangway. We’d been to Napier just a little over a year ago but by car not by ship and not during the summer season when all the activities were in full swing for the tourists.
We took an early morning walk and looked to see if the dolphins were in. The last time we’d walked here we had watched them in an early morning feeding swimming back and forth near the beach. We passed the yellow bed and breakfast where we’d stayed and noticed the no vacancy sign. “Someone is sleeping in our room,” my husband said with a sigh.
We continued on and found one of those sculptures that makes you ask, “What is it?” My app for walking was talking to me so we thought it best to turn around before we ventured so far we’d need a taxi ride back.
Coffee sounded good and we headed for the little coffee shop on the corner of the square where we’d stopped before. Nostalgia was strong, the coffee almost as strong. Who knew though that we would be in time for all the end of summer sales? The prices here were so much better than in Auckland. There was even a department store where we finally found pants that Bob liked—as close to Dockers as you could get. And I managed to find a top and a necklace. Me, a shopper? What is the world coming to?
It was a great day and I didn’t take my camera on purpose (the few pictures I took are from my iPhone). Some days are just made to enjoy and remember without the bother of a camera. If you’d like to see more of Napier, check out my blog post from our last visit in 2013. It’s still as beautiful and the gannets are still there.