Thursday, 11 October 2007

An eventful week...

This week I (Paul) went away with the staff from St Paul's to a beautiful place called Tarawharanui; It's a national park an hour or so North East of Auckland. I thought I'd write about it because I had a couple of experiences that I've not had before.

Firstly, on Wednesday afternoon we took a rowing boat out to a place in the bay, where we dived for scallops - this was great fun, although diving down to 5 or so meters and then trying to find scallops proved to be exhausting. We took 34 scallops back to our bach once done and they were cooked up and served as a nice mid afternoon snack!
Yesterday (Thursday) was even better. The team were sat on the deck having breakfast at about 8:30 when one of the team members spotted dolphins in the bay. We wondered down to the beach and watched them for a while, until I was able to persuade Mike & Rachel to go out in the rowing boat with me to get a closer look.

We got out in to the bay and they seemed quite happy to have us around, so we decided to jump in and swim with them - we swam with them for about 30 minutes or so, which was utterly exhilarating! 

Given that we weren't in wetsuits, we decided to head in to avoid hypothermia, but returned 30 minutes or so later with wetsuits, flippers, snorkels & masks, and spent a further half an hour swimming, diving, and playing with the dolphins - it was certainly the best experience of New Zealand that I've had, and one that I'll never forget.