Thursday 18 August 2011

Pining for the open sea

This is why the air smells so tangy outside on the river bank - and why I had to grip the steering wheel hard with both hands over and over again on my trips up the Cape. I must have met dozens of these logging trucks thundering along pulling trailers, loaded up with logs from the forests out east. Yesterday they were like some mythical beast, bearing down on me in a great cloud of spray and passing with a whump! And the returning empties were no better, their trailers on top and whizzing along well over the speed limit (them and me apart, there was precious little traffic on the road, which did allow all of us some personal interpretation of speed advisories and white lines).

Gisborne is a busy little port and concerns itself with fishing, forestry and frozen food. At the moment the logs are stacking up so high, there must be a ship due in soon to take them all away: in the few days we've been here, the wharf has filled up with them, of surprisingly assorted thicknesses. Possibly the weather is delaying the ship's arrival, with blustery squalls sweeping past, big breakers rolling in on Waikanae Beach, and people in town being blown along the streets like autumn leaves.

It's a nice little town, with some fine old Art Deco buildings, wide streets, a musical clock, Phoenix palms lining Gladstone Street, and all the shops anyone needs. And even though 'Perfect Roast' serves meats rather than coffee, you can also get a decent cup; and we've had a good meal out each night. Tonight though, the sights are set lower for a pizza and beanbag at The Dome cinema: could be fun. Could also do my back in.

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