Day 826 – NEW ZEALAND: A quiet day at Bruce and Melanie’s


I got to sleep on a spare matress in the living room of one of the most spell-binding homes I have stayed in on my travels. Waking up to birdsong, sitting up and being greeted by a commanding view over the lower valleys, shrouded in low cloud…I’m pretty sure that before I woke up I was dreaming that I could just click my fingers and the house would be my own. I would sit alone on the hilltop and just soak the view in.

Thankfully Bruce pulled me out of this dream, and I enjoyed company today that outmatched the view. Bruce and Melanie own and manage two cafes; the Bosco Cafe in Te Kuiti, and Huhu Cafe and Store in Waitomo. They are a busy couple, with seemingly boundless energy. Towards the end of today, Bruce would realise that today was the first day in a long time where he hardly gave his business a thought.

Mike Howie, long time friend of Bruce, was visiting also, and we all went on a walk with the family and other relatives to the mythical birthplace of a distant past Maori royalty. Bruce, if you’re reading this, you’ll need to refresh my memory on the story.

Mischevious Finn in the King Country, New Zealand

One of Bruce’s sons, Finn, and his friend, made the most of ample opportunity for mischeif and adventure.

The King Country, New Zealand

After the invigorating walk, it seemed appropriate for some food making. Parsely Pesto was the mission, and once again Finn featured in talking Mike through the process.

Maunsell Manor in the King Country, New Zealand

Making parsely pesto in the King Country, New Zealand Making parsely pesto in the King Country, New Zealand

  • Parsely
  • Garlic
  • Olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese (fresh)
  • Chilli
  • Almonds or pine nuts
  • A dash of lemon juice

There’s the basic ingredients, and the rest (quantities) are up to your personal taste.The stuff was amazing. On bread or crackers with cheese…mmmmm…

An awesome dinner at relatives in the evening (living even deeper in the hills of the mysterious King Country) topped off a fantastic day. The day ended feeling full of food, full of great company, and full of awesome atmosphere.

Maunsell Manor in the King Country, New Zealand

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