We were SO glad that we’d spent the night in a cabin rather than in a tent. When we packing our car in the morning there were many sad, wet and cold people packing up their tents, many surrounded by water. There had been masses of rain and wind overnight – and it continued. Actually, it pretty much continued for the entire day. At least the air temperature wasn’t cold!
As soon as we drove out of Cosy Cottages we encountered a tree across the road and needed to divert around it. There were plenty of trees down beside the roads as we left Rotorua and headed to Nirvana Farm Stay at Te Haroto (in Hawke’s Bay, around an hour from Napier). Because of the rain there wasn’t really much to see from the car windows – other than plenty of cows and sheep in paddocks, with the cows all lined up together, bottoms into the wind. It took us a couple of hours to get there, with the raining easing a little as we headed east.
Despite the rain, we could tell that we’d chosen a really beautiful place to stay. It’s definitely well off the main road – the closest shops are around an hour away in each direction, so it was a good thing that we had food with us – and was full of hills, valleys, streams, vegetation, birds and animals. We quickly settled in to our room (converted shearer’s quarters – basic but comfortable with everything we needed) then headed over to the shearing shed.
Craig has done an excellent job converting the shearing shed into a fun and sociable space. It included a pool table, darts boards, DVD player (no WiFi out here), bar area, some books and magazines, a BBQ, and plenty of comfy chairs and couches. It was the perfect place to be on a rainy afternoon. There was another family staying as well, so we whiled away the hours chatting to them and to Craig, with the kids either reading, playing darts or watching a movie.
My childhood – and adulthood, actually – contained many visits to my aunt and uncle’s sheep farm, so in many ways this was a familiar environment for me. We used to take our kids there each Easter as well, until my aunt and uncle retired and sold their farm around five years ago. Unfortunately Stella in particular doesn’t remember much about it. We’re really looking forward to some farm experiences with our city kids.