Happy New Year everyone! Those of us in the Southern Hemisphere are now firmly in summer holiday mode, looking forward to a few precious weeks of holidays while the weather is good and the days long and lazy, before heading back to work and the excitement and promise a new year inevitably brings.
I remember as a kid the summer holidays seem to stretch on forever. Endless trips to the beach, ice creams, days at the pool, BBQs, playing go-home-stay-home on hot summer nights, spotlight if we were allowed to stay up really late.
My Mum’s family used to own a bach at Takamatua, just out of Akaroa on Banks Peninsula. We would pack the car, and head off over the hill from Christchurch, stopping at the Hill Top Tavern for a hot pie or ice cream if we were lucky (and didn’t ask “are we there yet?” too many times). From the bach we could head into Akaroa for a swim and fish and chips on the sand. For years we did virtually the same thing every summer and there was something comforting in the ritual of the whole experience. On some level the tradition of the great Kiwi summer holiday is central to our national identity.
But let’s not forget that other kind of holiday – the adventure that involves heading off and away, packing the suitcase, digging out the passport and immersing oneself in the culture and traditions of a far-off land. This month we will bring you a taste of the classic Kiwi summer alongside some inspiring travel posts from Our Kitchen teamsters who have been lucky enough to spend some of the past 12 months exploring that big wide world out there!