|It has been pouring down all night and there is no sign of any let up this morning. We resign ourselves to a day indoors catching up on blogs and the paperwork side of things. Phil is going to the shops so we cadge a ride just to get out for a while. We buy some eggs for an omelette for lunch something we can’t carry easily on the bike and so don’t have them very often. By late afternoon I have finally finished the next blog but when I go to save it I hit the wrong button and delete it all instead. It is very frustrating having spent about three days writing it. I spend another half hour trying to recover it but to no avail so I resign myself to writing it all over again. It has been raining non stop for officially 48hrs now so at least I’m not missing anything. Jeanette and Ernie are having a going away bbq and we are invited along with Grace a Korean lady who staying with Phil whilst she is here studying english. Fortunately they can have the bbq ontheir covered deck.
It was our intention to leave tomorrow but the roads are rapidly becoming floods so we shall see.
Waking in the morning we see it’s still raining…but it is now just drizzle it’s like being back in England. Deciding to make the most of it we tog up and go back to Kuirau the local geothermal park to fill in the gaps from yesterday. The pools are all full to overflowing so much so they are not that impressive but I spot steam coming from the side of the road investigating further there is a dry line running across the road and on one side is a mini gesyer coming from a drain all gushing and gurgling and spouting water we watch fasinated for a while.
We are not the only mad bikers out, we spy what turns out to be an English couple only here for three weeks on a rented bike. They changed their plans and missed out the coromandel yesterday due to the heavy rain at least we have more time and wait for this to blow through before resuming our travels.
We wish them well and turn towards the blue and green lakes near the buried village. It is at the lakes we encounter our second mad lot of bikers in the rain, a large group of Danish bikers again on rented bikes doing a 21 days tour of north and south. They rode in the torrental rain of yesterday around the coromandel encountering a few road slips on the way. After a brief but interesting chat with some we turn towards the buried village. I went to this as a kid with my parents and have fond memories so so choose to not visit again so as not to spoil the memory I have. The edge of the lakes was the site of the famous pink and white terraces a huge tourist attraction until the eruption in the 1880′s which not only buried them with rising water changing the shape of the lake but buried the village too with lava and mudslides. We hear on the news just recently that divers have found the bottom two of the pink terraces intact and the hope is more has survived.
We turn back towards town to the museum which is housed in the old bath house. This in itself is very interesting with some of the old baths in place and written accounts of various treatments from people who worked there. It has a basement full of the pipe work and the mud treatment rooms and they have built a viewing platform out on the roof not that there is much of a view today. The museum also houses a good maori collection but the maori’s don’t allow any photo’s so trying to remember key figures names and what they did is nigh on impossible.
Back at Phil’s we make spagetti bolognaise he has just eaten but Grace hasn’t so she samples her first taste of italian cuisine and seems to enjoy it, that night we all watch a movie together.
We leave tomorrow heading for Gisborne via Waikaremoana (a 90km gravel road ) and hope the route is open.