A Big Splash in Hamilton

Our last performance on this tour was Saturday for the Waikato Patchworkers and Quilters Guild in Hamilton, just south of Auckland. The Waikato Patchworkers took advantage of our visit to hold their Christmas lunch, so we all ate very well before we sang. There were lots of Christmas bells everywhere (mostly on people’s heads), and a really magnificent show and tell – it’s a great time to see everyone’s work, just before they give them away as Christmas presents!

 

Hamilton is a quite large city – the biggest inland city in New Zealand. It’s famous for its gardens, and we did manage a couple of visits while we were there. The gardens are organized in a way I’ve not seen before:  they have separate styles of gardens from all over the world.  There is a Chinese, a Japanese, an Italian, Indian and English garden too.  I was curious to see the “American Modernist garden”. 

Marilyn Monroe and Blob Garden

Marilyn Monroe and Blob Garden

 Just after I took this picture, we were admiring the view over the edge and we heard a big splash.  A father taking a video of his children atop one of the sculptures backed up right into the pond!

There was a new Maori garden there too, in the style of a Pa – a Maori fort. Inside the sharpened poles a tribe would have water and a food supply ready in case of a long seige. We saw kumera (a NZ type of sweet potato) growing there.

Maori Garden/Pa

Maori Garden/Pa

 In the Chinese garden, we found this charming turtle.

 

2008-12-13-011 

Even though we’ve finished the performing part of this tour, our adventures aren’t over yet. We won’t be flying home until next Friday, and that means we can be full-time tourists until then.  We’re planning a visit to the Bay of Islands, and going to try to get all the way up to Cape Reinga, the northernmost point of the North Island.  More to come!

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