So Saturday at Whangamata was absolutely perfect!! A typical hot summers day was on offer so it was off to the beach for us. The girls went before me as I wanted to visit my sister in the shop she works in so I met them under the sun umbrella a couple of hours later.
I love that not much has changed on the beach since I was a bikini wearing teenager.
Except I don't wear bikinis anymore.
Plenty of boats out trying to catch dinner, and plenty of seagulls looking for scraps.
My god daughter is learning to surf so she has been hitting the waves every morning.
After the beach it was time for nibbles.
This photo was taken in 1959 and shows Whangamata back in the day. I have been going over there since I was 4, so quite a few years now, almost a second home to me.
We went to the local cinema before dinner to see the movie "Philomena". The only thing that has changed about this old cinema is there are better seats with more leg room, apart from that it is like going back into the past, and they still charge city prices, $15. But the movie was very enjoyable with about 25 people in attendance and I think only two of them were blokes! We loved the sign in a shop window that we found, so Whangamata.
Sunday morning arrived and was a little overcast but still very warm. The girls headed off to the beach again and I went to the Camping Ground to catch up with some other friends that were over with their grandchildren. We all used to hang out in at the Camp when we were kids and played Housie at night and basically had a lot of fun. The old Camp is still pretty much the same with some people now having permanent sites with conservatories like my friends.
Every day the neighbours cat "Sparkie" came to visit, she is rather elderly and dribbles when she purrs. But she is so adorable and very welcome. After lunch and a bit of a rest and relaxation session Leonie and I went for a drive to the Estuary part of the beach, a favourite spot when we were little. En route we stopped in at Whangamata Traders, jam packed with goodies, a little pricey for me but all very fabulous.
The views from a reasonably new subdivision up behind the Estuary are to die for and a completely new way for me to see it. We walked to all the old spots and took a bit of a trip down memory lane.
There is an entire corner of the sand fenced off to protect some native birds. Oyster catchers are the black ones in the top photo and Dotteral, the bottom photo standing on the driftwood.
The sand down this part of the beach is so very soft and white and the views out to the little Islands just off shore are stunning. It is a quieter end of the beach favoured by families with littlies, and surf casting men!
We had a pleasant wander along the beach and then treated ourselves to an ice cream at the local dairy. Have not done this for years, because my sister lives at the opposite end of the beach, the harbour end and we usually just hang out in that part of the town. So this was really nice and I must remember to take TOF there next time we go over.
Last night was my last night at the beach so we had a few cheeky wines and set up the camera on the tripod for a few group photos. We watched movies on the TV and totally chilled out. Beach life is/was good!!
This morning while having my last breakfast at the beach birds gathered in the garden to say farewell. NOT!!! But they were very cute and someone's NZ flag was flapping in the breeze. I packed my car, hugs all round, and said my goodbyes and thank yous. Off I went on my way home with a quick stop off at the two op shops available and a farewell visit to my sister. I have had the most loveliest time away at the beach with my very dear friend and my gorgeous god daughter. It was great to catch up with other familiar faces and also see my sister again.
I had a good drive back to my beloved Hamilton and have dumped all my stuff inside. Thank you again to Leonie for inviting me to stay with her and Thank You Whangamata for still being one of the most if not the best Beach in New Zealand.
I WILL BE BACK!!