ooh, kennedy bay.

Kennedy Bay, Coromandel Peninsula

Our “home” keeps changing and it’s amazing how quickly we feel comfortable in certain places.

When we mentioned we were heading to the Coromandel Peninsula, the response has been a resounding head nod and twinkle in the eye. They speak as though it is a place where dreams come true, where beauty is immeasurable, and where their memories are still so ripe, they just keep nodding “Coromandel, mm hmm….Coromandel.”

On our drive here, we were a bit nauseated from the long winding roads that put the Appalachian Mountains to shame. About an hour in we even said, “Who would live all the way out here?”

Our question was answered with a huge bang in the form of
mountains, rivers, and the most tranquil beach we had ever seen.

Our first day:

9:15am Woke up from “the best night’s sleep of our entire lives”

10:00am Met Raewyn. Kasey said, “She reminds me of all of the people I like.”

“I’ll be over there in a wee minute,” she said. She gave us a tour of the property while pointing out projects we could do on our own schedule. We walked over to the dock. “And these are the eels. They are how I lost the Dutch boy.” We were thinking, what! He was eaten alive by eels!

“…he knew they were like family to me and he smoked them for supper while I was on holiday. So he had to go.”

She told us her neighbor started a stand up paddle board and kayak rental company *today* and the special was $10 for an hour and a half. It took us less than 10 seconds to say “yes.”

11:30am-1:00pm Floated down the river that meets the sea. Beautiful day, about 75 degrees. I started out with the kayak, while the girls were on paddle boards. Brittany looked like Pocahontas as she was rowing, and Kasey sang the song, “Color of the Wind.” It was one of the most tranquil and lovely times. My paddles said “Feel Free”. I did. I felt free from stress, busyness, and traffic.

1:30pm We made lunch in our sweet little cottage and ate it in the sunshine. Salad, rice cake with peanut butter, and an orange we bought from an antique store in Katikati.

2:00pm We knew Raewyn lived near the beach, but we were pleasantly surprised to find out she lived on the road that leads to be beach. We walked 3 minutes to a stunning beach that looked like a Tahitian postcard. We read, walked, and gawked. Brittany and I spoke about how cool it was to stay at a place like this for a little bit of work in exchange, because a place on this beach would cost hundreds a night.

On our walk back “home”, Kasey said, “Imagine how packed this beach would be if it were in Clearwater.”

“Yeah. On Saturday. Sheesh. Then there’d be people everywhere. And a Frenchy’s over there…” Beth

…..pause….stomach growl….

“…That wouldn’t be so bad.” 

Raewyn lives so far out up windy roads that the mailmen actually bring her groceries if she calls them beforehand. On our way here, we saw a sign that said “Fruit and Veges” and then they were stored in a shelf by a mailbox, with a lockbox to slip money in. So we jogged there. Kasey and Brittany were a bit ahead of me and I started to walk, when a fella of Maori decent sitting on his porch said, “You can catch up! Go go go!”

I retorted, “I’m too tired!!!”

“No excuses. Left, right, left…you can do this. I am on your side!”

I ran the rest of the way. We put money in the “honest box” and bought an avocado, some silverbeet, and spinach. We had to stop in the road to let a tractor pulling a boat pull into their driveway.

4:30pm We came home to “mail” on our front door. Raewyn left a town newsletter and had circled in pink highlighter a Halloween party and costume contest for tomorrow night in Coromandel Town.

[next day]

Raewyn strikes again. When we were eating breakfast this morning, we noticed several costumes hung up on the clothesline. A handmade clown costume, two crazy floral dresses, one equally floral jumper, a leopard coat, a princess headband, etc. Here’s what we ended up with: 

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