I have to describe my very generous accommodations in Auckland. Lynn has some Canadian friends arriving to stay today so for the last two nights I have been in the back up bed in the garage. Oddly, I’ve never slept on a more comfortable pullout couch. So firm!! One of the amusing things about the garage/bedroom is that it get bombarded by falling fruit throughout the night. Either small bangs of hazelnuts potter patter on the thin roof. Or the are monster bangs as the ripe avocados give it up and fall from 10m up. Boom! I had a few overnight. Very shocking though amusing.

So … my last partial day with the bike. I decided to break my fast with a non-Benedict Egg extravaganza at a local coffee shop called “Honey Bones”. It was one of the best breakfasts that I have had in my travels. Well done, Grey Lynn area in Auckland.

My game plan with the bike was to head west to one of the infamous black sand beaches. I picked Piha as my beach if choice. With my suspect nav-system in play, I was guaranteed a couple of missed turns etc. I did not disappoint myself as I zipped into a very turny, scenic road that ended at a dead end at the lovely beach at Huia. A little backtracking led me to the actual scenic route to Piha. This looks like a community where people come for a summer of surfing and then just check out for the rest of their lives. Very bo-ho and granola. Sorta a fun vibe.

To took an nice long walk on the beach with my feet in the NZ sand and then headed back to the bike for the next leg. I continued the scenic coastal route north until it swung eastward into the mess of communities to the north of Auckland. I jumped aboard the 1 and fired southbound.

Nav-system what it is, I guessed at when I was far enough south to start heading east onto the peninsula that has my bike-return destination at the North tip: Mauratai. I was way short. I zigged and zagged but the signage on these NZ roads can be surprisingly unhelpful.

Eventually I gave into the need for the phone to guide me in and strapped the phone into my jury-rigged handlebar mounting and proceeded. I landed back with Randal and Auckland Motorbike Hire. He organized at trip down to the local Ferry so that could take me back to Auckland proper. We grabbed a “good bye / thanks much” beer at the docks and then I took a solo-ride on a 50 passenger Ferry into Auckland.

Lynn had given me good advice on the bus routes that returned me to Grey Lynn and her house. The Canadian friends of Lynn had been successfully picked up in Rotorua and returned to Auckland. Soon after my arrival, I sat down with Audrey and Gord, Lynn’s Edmonton friends, for a sumptuous chicken dinner that Lynn had prepared in advance. The Edmontonians turned out to know some of the original investors of the Grizzly Paw so it was a bit of a catch-up. It’s a small world.

Dinner led to chatting into the eve and bed called to us all around 11pm.

Only one huge Avocado bomb hit the garage overnight.

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