Sunday, December 30, 2012


As I write this we are experiencing the first thunder storm of the summer. Rain is pelting down and the spouting is overflowing. It's hard to believe that just a few hours ago we were walking along the banks of Silver Steam on the Taieri, enjoying a fine day.

The Taieri Plain is just south of Dunedin - a 15 minutes drive - and is mainly rural with sheep, dairy, and horse farms. There is also Dunedin's airport and one of our destinations for the day: McArthurs Berry Farm.

If there is one thing that speaks to me of Christmas and summer it is strawberries.

Christmas dinner is not compete without the pavlova lathered with cream and studded with the ruby red berries. And it's not just the pav. Strawberries grace the trifle and any other sweet concoction the festivities produce.

Today we bought two large punnets of strawberries that were picked only hours before. Bright shiny and gloriously sweet, I've a feeling they will be long gone before I can dream up a dessert for them. No doubt we will be making another trip or two to McArthur's before summer is over.

I forgot to take my camera but here is a photo I found of a portion of the Taieri Plain and Saddle Hill. The larger mound of this saddle is visible from many vantage points in Dunedin. It separates the plain from the sea and was named for its likeness to a saddle. Dunedin is situated off to the left of the photo.

The storm has now passed and the temperature is cooler; a welcome relief. We've been having a warm Christmas - a blessing as it often is cool and unsettled - and a very laid back time it has been. Lots of books to read, friends and family to visit with and this year the addition of two new pets, but that's a story for another post!

Whether you are basking in a southern hemisphere summer or rugged up and watching snow fall, have a happy and safe New Year.


  1. Yes Christmas Eve was our pav with strawberries night.

  2. I find this so interesting, how other parts of the world celebrate Christmas. It is always cold and (usually) snowing around this time of year. It would seem so different to have warm temperatures, green all around, flowers blooming, etc.

    I hope you have a wonderful New Year!

  3. It is different, yet a 'white Christmas' is something we all dream of down here. It's only in the last 20-30 odd years that New Zealanders have slowly let go of the "old country's" traditions and made newer ones more suitable for our climate. As a kid I remember sitting down to a huge roast dinner with all the trimmings and steam pud etc etc in the midst of mid-summer, now cold meats and salads or even a bbq at the beach are popular options.

  4. Wow, those look so delicious! Those photos are so beautiful.