Emma's Mum here...
Apologies for the absence of any update for a while. I managed to accidentally delete my last epistle after a half hour of writing and haven’t had the access to complete until now!
Day 58 Glenavy to Herbert
It was a very hot day today – one of the hottest days of the walk so far. Paul enjoyed walking 18 km’s with me and kept up a good pace while Grandma and Mum did the driving along the lovely wide berms leading into Oamaru.
We had a few people stop along the way with lots of encouragement and donations. Kay, the AP from Pinehaven School in Wellington (The first school that I spoke at, on this journey) was on her way South with the family, and stopped to have a catch up. Wayne and Vicki from Oamaru also stopped at the same time and then visited later that evening (many thanks for the donated drinks which were most appreciated!!!). We stopped briefly at Subway and received yet more donations from Janice and another from Rose who it transpired was a distant relative. The heat must have taken a toll as after lunch I had a severe nose bleed and just at the time that the ODT Reporter arrived on the side of the road to conduct an interview with me. At this time, a car load of young men also stopped and gave a donation – Luke and his mate appreciated my efforts as they had done something similar (albeit not walking and from Bluff to Cape Reinga). As I was feeling a bit dizzy and the heat was relentless – I finished a little earlier than planned and retired back to our wonderful hosts’ place where we finally met our hosts. Karen, Russell, Jake and Emma – I can’t thank you enough for your wonderful hospitality – your generosity was most appreciated by us all and has left us with very fond memories of Oamaru and your kindness. Many thanks for the dinner at Filadelfios’ and showing us the wonders of the yellow eyed penguins at Bushy Beach and also the blue penguins coming ashore at dusk. Emma and Jake – also appreciated the donation from the proceeds of the Ardgowan school production of Cinderfella’s – thank you both!!
Day 59 Herbert to
A little late starting unfortunately but the Gawn family were troopers for waiting and then walking a few of the KM’s with me on another fairly hot morning. I also met with Warren Prescott from Oamaru LJ Hookers – who was organising a bucket collection at lunchtime in Oamaru. Karen – your support continued to be amazing facilitating some packed lunches from Sharon and John Greaney from Peter Pan Bakery and also fresh fruit from David and Anne Laughton of BDA Marketing. We headed back into Oamaru to assist the LJ Hooker Team (and Gawn family) with the bucket collection along the main street. Generosity of spirit and money is a recurrent theme of my journey – the Oamaru collection excelled and was the best collection yet (even though I understand the majority of people had escaped to the lakes) Warren- again many thanks for your efforts particularly at this time of year. We stayed in Palmerston and when returning to our rooms after dinner met with the Great Nephew of Esther James – the first woman I believe to walk the length on NZ in 1931 in aid of buying NZ made. He showed us a copy of her book “Just jobbing along” which was very interesting.
Day 60 to Dunedin
A little cooler today. Mum commented that the roadsides were a little narrower today while manoeuvring the Juicy van at a safe distance behind me. Jo and Mark Goodhew stopped for a quick catch up while on their way back to Timaru. The walks each day seem to get longer, the more I am without my IPOD – it’s much harder to keep my mind focused and the momentum has been interrupted. Lots of toots of encouragement from passing motorists kept the day interesting. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to walk the last big hill into Dunedin – mainly due to the no walking for the next 15km sign! Anyway, I was on time to meet up with Janet, Olivia, Rosemary, Albert and Richard from the CF Community in Dunedin. Janet, Olivia and I walked from Pinehill to the Octagon and there ended Day 60. After 4 days of walking in the heat I was pretty exhausted and just rested – thanks to our Sponsors – the Kingsgate Hotel.
Day 61 REST DAY (New Years Eve)
Mum finally took pity on me and has assisted in the purchase of a new Ipod – to replace the new one I received for my birthday 6 weeks ago, and which was damaged by rain while walking through Christchurch.
Rosemary and Albert very kindly hosted an amazing lunch at their home for the team and I – Mum and Grandma really enjoyed walking around your lovely garden.
Karen’s parents called into Dunedin to meet me on their way back to Oamaru after a couple of days of camping. Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and encouragement.
New Years eve – and I couldn’t quite last until midnight. I stayed at the Octagon listening to the band until I could no longer stand and just managed to see the New Year in before collapsing into bed.
Day 62 Rest Day (New Years Day)
Mum and Grandma headed back to Wellington today to keep the home fires burning while Dad joins me tomorrow to drive the van for the remainder of the trip. After dropping Mum and Grandma at the airport – I did a little bit of sight seeing, picked up Paul’s birthday present – rather belatedly (sorry Paul) and Ange and I purchased a lovely salad meal from the Supermarket for dinner.
Day 63 Dunedin to Clarendon.
I met Rosemary, Albert and Richard at the Octagon and walked with Janet and Daryl & Lochie Judd (friends from Wellington and in the area on holiday). A good effort by Daryl who walked for 15km’s. A person already on a walk also joined me for a couple of hours. I stopped at lunchtime to pick Dad up from the airport and managed to get a call over the loud speaker for parking too long in the ‘drop off ‘ zone!!!!
I continued walking after lunch – the weather was pretty miserable and on a par with the worst day I had in Christchurch.
I met Jeremy who arrived by motorcycle and made a very substantial and generous donation on behalf of himself, his wife, Mother –in law and 2 year old daughter Harriet. Thank you so much – it was a pleasure talking with you too.
The occupants of a car which stopped were also very generous with a donation – many thanks.
A photographer from the ODT also arrived at some point in the afternoon to take some photos and I’ve not long finished an interview with the ODT. A big thumbs up to the ODT for your amazing coverage and supporting my walk for a cure!