After saying farewell to Auckland and our Auckland pals for the second time, we drove south to the surfer town of Raglan. It was John’s very first journey and it went swimmingly (apart from the bit where we had to go to a mechanic a mere 5 minutes into the journey because a bit of car was hanging off the bonnet, and apart from the fact that I was dying from a hangover in the back seat). We were looking forward to a few days in a new place, and surfing for the first time, which we did on my birthday!
Grace and Toby made me birthday breakfast and a tasty birthday cake and gave me some lovely presents. Grace brought some presents over from England from my Mum, so that made my day extra special. After a hearty breakfast we were ready to drive to the beach and catch some waves. We were all a bit rubbish and got hit loads by our own surfboards. We were bruised and battered by the end, but we had made some progress – Toby even managed to stand up! We also agreed that when you’re a beginner, it’s a sport which involves a lot of near drowning and you feel like you’ve been beaten up by the end of it. We’d all definitely try it again though, envious of all the surfers that effortlessly rode the waves with such style. We spent a few hours on the black sand beach sunbathing and snoozing before we headed back to the hostel to rest our muscles in the hot tub, drink beer and eat cake.
Raglan had a really relaxed atmosphere and great food (namely pies and fish ‘n’ chips). We found some really nice fancy shops too just outside the main part of town, and Grace fell in love with a pottery shop. We’d like to return to Raglan before we leave New Zealand, and hopefully we’ll be a bit better at surfing next time around!