In School Holidays I do focus on the one-on-one time with my kids. I wrote about my day with my daughter yesterday, so here is a piece about my day with my son.
He’s 10, and likes tunnels and dark places and military installations.
We made a plan to go visit Waiheke Island in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf.
I decided to take my car across so we could explore properly. I picked him up at 7am in order to make the 8am Sealink ferry sailing from Half Moon Bay, Auckland.
It was a perfect weather day.
We arrived on the Island and then found a local store to stock up on snacks. And then we just drove. No maps. We just followed our noses and went down random roads. I have to say, there is a lot of beauty and seclusion on Waiheke.
After killing some time by looking at nature, we headed to our primary destination: Stony Batter. This is an historic gun emplacement on the western side of the Island. The appeal is the extensive network of tunnels, some 20m below ground. It’s really great seeing some progress towards restoration. Being able to roam them with torches whilst following a written guide made for a lot of fun. Especially when we’d turn the torch off and I’d hide around a corner. Yes, I do enjoy freaking my child out. I’m sure I should feel bad about that but I also think it’s important for one to grow in confidence in the dark.
It was about this time that my phone died so I couldn’t take any more photos. I’m still a bit annoyed about that as I do like to retain memories.
After leaving the tunnels and checking out the massive gun pits, we headed back to where we parked. We had a lot of fun exploring the boulders in the fields around the site. My son was adamant that Peter Jackson should have filmed The Hobbit there (yes, we did have to do a little re-enactment of ‘dwarves running across boulder-strewn fields avoiding Orcs on Wargs’).
We had lunch at the Beach Front Restaurant and had a nice chat with the owners. I love that people from the other side of the World are able to find and purchase a business online and then move here for the lifestyle.
We returned to the ferry terminal via all of the roads.
All in all, a great day. We had fun misbehaving and exploring. I can’t wait until the next time. (Of course, the next time is probably going to be Tree Adventures again because the sister had such a great time there).