According to recent survey results, among the most popular names given to Australian born babies this year is ‘Bruce’. They don’t help themselves, do they? If ever there were a nation that lived up to its stereotypes then surely this is it. Think of Australia and you picture the dusty outback, surf breaks and Merv […]

“You like New Zealand bro?” “Yeah, nah – sweet as bro, eh?“ “Eh, bro?“ “Eh?“ “Ah yeah, bro, eh?“ “Eh?“ “Bro?“ “Ah bro“ “Ah yeah, it’s choice eh?“ “Choice bro!“ “Eh?“ “Good as gold bro, eh?“ “Sweet as bro!“ “Ah yeah bro!“ Well, exactly. Today we leave New Zealand, and while our grasping of the […]

Lost in the woods at night. It’s the scene of nightmares isn’t it? Bound with the fact that it’s a situation which will only develop from running in bewildered, snotty nosed circles to an untimely but all too inevitable demise, it’s one we weren’t overly keen in experiencing. Huge Kauri trees loomed over us from […]

Surfing. Pastime of the effortlessly cool, sport of the effortlessly coordinated. Neither of which I am, and these being attributes that you tend to just have rather than acquire, I am destined to always fail at surfing. Not that it’s a bad thing entirely. Surfers are eaten by sharks more than most, as are they […]

“Go waaaay out East” – grinned the man at the info site – “as far as you can go“. Out to a part of New Zealand that’s less trodden than most, out to a blueprint of its past. Out East to see the new day before the rest of the world, where the ways of […]

The last time I was on holiday with my folks was in 1999 I think, when aged 15, I spent most of a two week trip to California fighting with my brother and trying to spot Snoop Doggy Dogg. Looking back in fact, I seem to recall wreaking havoc on most of the holidays of […]

New Zealand is a bit weird, really. The country and its people are just not normal. Never mind a worryingly high volume of mullet haircuts or the curious national obsession with beetroot – both of which are bizarre – and ignore also the tricky place names (try and pronounce Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu without drawing breath). What’s most […]