To market, to market…

After our morning coffee and yogurt we got into our car and headed down to the Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Market in Hastings, about half an hour south of our place. Graeme and Robyn had told us about it. We are not really “farmers’ market” kind of people, but hey, we’re tourists and we’ve got to check out these kinds of things. We found the market easily enough. Lots of cars already on the big ‘fair grounds’ parking lot. A fiddler sitting at the entrance, fiddling away. Lots of people. Lots of booths. Lots of ‘organic’ and ‘fresh’ and ‘homegrown’. Lots of free samples. More music inside. Hey, it’s like a big fair! And the samples are pretty good. And the sun is shining and there’s lots of big shade trees and it’s kind of fun here.

So we bought bread and some cheese and freshly roasted coffee and avocados to take home. And I had a big bacon sandwich and Sue had a danish for lunch. And then we left.

We drove down to Havelock North, an ‘artsy’ little town not far from the Hawke’s Bay Market. We parked the car and went for a little walk, looking at all the shops on the main street. I was sort of looking for a place to buy flip-flops because the blisters on my foot were bugging me when I wore the same sandals that caused them in the first place. We didn’t find sandals, but we found a very nice ‘New World’ grocery store. Well, Sue would be just as happy to ‘tour’ a grocery store as to tour a farmer’s market. In we went. Good thing Sue had her big grocery list with her. We decided to make this our grocery shop for the week ahead. A hundred-and-twenty dollars later we headed back to our apartment to ‘unpack’.

Graeme and Robyn came by for a short visit. They’d just finished a 70km bike ride and with the 34 degree sunshine, they were wiped! We sat and visited in the shade at our place for a while. Robyn was going to take us golfing at the Maraenui Golf Club where she is a member. But apparently there’d been a big tournament there all day so we wouldn’t go until at least 4:30. No problem. Time for a little Sunday afternoon maedach-schlop.

A little after 4 we decided to go to the course and see if we could get 9 holes for the Sunday afternoon $15 discounted green fee. When we got there there were a LOT of cars on the parking lot. But it looked like the tourney was over and most people were loading the clubs and ‘trundlers’ into their trunks. We paid and headed for the first tee.

My first tee shot went way left, into the trees. Ouch! I was glad Robyn wasn’t along with us — this would have been an embarrassing start. And Sue, who normally would have taken me aside right about now and told me to ‘calm down’, and suggest that I was shooting poorly because I was nervous that everyone was watching me (and there were quite a few other golfers on the tee watching me) and I should just RELAX, didn’t say anything at all. She just walked up to the ladies’ tee box and proceeded to bloop her tee shot about 30 yards ahead. Oh oh. Not a very auspicious start to the golf game.

But we persevered. And after a couple of holes we were away from the pack and playing our usual (not very good) game. And enjoying the scenery. Vineyards surrounding the course, big shady trees, some with red and pink blooms, lots of pine needles in the shade of the massive trees that lined each of the fairways.

We were back at the apartment by 7pm. After the obligatory G&Ts (hey, we have the lemons anyway), Sue peeled the prawns she’d bought earlier and soon had the apartment smelling delicious. Rotini and shrimp in a curry-garlic sauce. (Sue said Ingrid would NOT like this, but Rudy LOVED it!) We ate outside at the little table on our patio. We could hear Robyn laughing her loud unmistakeable marvellous laugh — she and Graeme are doing their usual ‘welcome’ socializing with the B&B guests — today it’s a young American couple who are on their honeymoon here in New Zealand.