New Zealand Adventure #3 – Bathroom Funnies

New Zealand Adventure #3 – Bathroom Funnies

Bathrooms in New Zealand have a sense of humor.

Public bathrooms were almost uniformly clean, plentiful, and well-maintained. They were also sometimes surprisingly humorous.

There were the public bathrooms that gave you 10 minutes, then they would unlock the door…ready or not. Then there were the ones that wouldn’t unlock and open the door unless you washed your hands.


There were murals…



paintings on the wall…



and sneaky peeking observers.

It was an adventure.

New Zealand Adventure #2 – Breakfast

New Zealand Adventure #2 – Breakfast

The food was very good in New Zealand, but what I remember the most are the breakfasts. Maybe it’s because I rarely have time for a sit-down breakfast at home. My habit is to grab a cup of tea and toast with almond butter, or something similarly easy. But breakfast at cafes around New Zealand was a treat and a necessity before a long morning of hiking.

The cappuccinos were works of art.

Not so much the decaf…


Perfectly poached eggs were often on the menu.


Do you see how delightfully orange the yolks were?

Bright orange yolks are not something I have seen since we kept backyard chickens several years ago. The orange color comes from carotenoid pigments in the hen’s diet. If they are fed orange things (cantaloupe, winter squash, carrots for example) and dark leafy greens, the yolks will be more orange. If they are fed corn, they will be medium yellow. And if they are fed more wheat and barley, the yolks will be a lighter color. The color makes no difference in the nutritional value. One interesting thing I found is that different countries prefer different colors. New Zealanders, Australians, and Southern Europeans prefer their egg yolks to be more orange, while Northern Europeans prefer them to be more yellow. Germany is divided in the middle.

By law, no artificial coloring is allowed in chicken feed, but some farmers will add marigold petals to give yolks an orangey color boost.

Smoked salmon was also a common item and was delicious.

Plus the occasional waffle or French toast, sometimes with more salmon.


One morning I had something called Turkish eggs. It turned out to be poached eggs with harissa, yogurt, zatar, and Dukkah. It was unexpectedly different and flavorful.


My fellow travelers from the U.S. were introduced to vegemite. I think you must have grown up on it, they were not fans. Having an English Mum meant we smuggled Bovril back from the U.K. every time we visited.


It has inspired me to be more creative at breakfast, at least on the weekends.



New Zealand Adventure #1 – Mount Cook, March 2023

New Zealand Adventure #1 – Mount Cook, March 2023

A question I’ve been asked since we returned is ‘What did I enjoy the most about New Zealand?’. Maybe a better question would be ‘What was the most amazing thing about the trip?’ I’d have to answer that it was a small country’s incredible variety of terrain and flora. There were mountains, rainforests, coastal bluffs, lakes, and fjords.

Here is a sample of the variety. I am going to break this into several posts. There is simply too much to tell you in one.

The second day of our tour with New Zealand Trails took us to Mount Cook. The scheduled hike was a steep trail up the mountain. Unfortunately, it was closed by the park because of dangerous conditions. The first rainfall of the season had fallen overnight bringing snow to the higher elevations. The trail would have been icy, slippery, and muddy.

Mount Cook

Mount Cook

Our guides did a quick reset and it was decided to hike on the Hooker Trail. It’s part of the benefit of going with experienced guides who can turn on a dime when a change is needed to the itinerary.

Our group ready to hike on the Hooker Valley Trail

Our hiking tour group ready to hike on the Hooker Valley Trail

You can see we are all decked out and prepared for cold and wet conditions. Our dog trainers say that there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad gear. They never cancel a class. We were ready for the challenge.

Steve and I, prepared for the weather

Steve and I were prepared for the weather. Bring it on!

The overnight rain had not only coated the mountains with snow, it had also created multiple waterfalls coming down into the river.

Roaring River

Roaring River

I wish I could include the roar in this post!

We crossed several hanging bridges on our hike. I was careful not to cross at the same time as one of our group who liked to jump up and down while we were on the bridge.

The payoff was at the end where we saw icebergs that had broken off from the glacier into the lake at the end of the trail. You can see the waterfalls coming off the mountains.


The next day dawned bright and clear with blue skies. We could finally see the top of Mount Cook in the distance.

Mount Cook

Mount Cook

Stay tuned for more adventure.