Up at the crack of after-dawn. After a quick clean-up, I has down having toast and tea with Martin and Francis for the last time. They gave me some weather reports and pointed me towards my bike. The consensus was that … there would be no moisture on my ride. Considering that it was raining all morning that was a ballsy call. However, it proved correct.

The ride north from Plimmerton was dry and slick. I jumped off the “1” and joined the “3” west at Bull. I had a quick coffee and bagel at the Red Eye Cafe in Whanganui. Mmmm bagel and coffee.

Then it was on to the coast to New Plymouth. To paraphrase MLK “We didn’t land on New Plymouth Rock, New Plymouth Rock landed … on our top 10 of NZ towns”!!!! Great wee museum at Puke Ariki . Some decent restaurants. Beers and wings at GoodHome Restaurant.

Dash back to the hotel to change out of the grubbies and I was off to Social Kitchen for some decent food. Kara served me a Priscilla Sour to start the eve. Beef Tartare and Tomato&Boccocini Salad to follow. Some Australian d’Arenberg (remember my Adelaide tour?) Footbolt Shiraz red vino … hello!!!

It turned out that I was sitting in the area that the staff congregate in after work. The chef had a recommendation for a wind-down cocktail joint: Hour Glass. The advice was good. I had a well-crafted Moscow Mule.

Thumbs up to New Plymouth.

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