Monday was Auckland Anniversary, so we had a long weekend, which I spent in Whakatane.
On the way down, I stopped in Hinuera. There's a quarry there that sells their off-cuts of Hinuera limestone to sculptors. I picked up three squareish blocks about the size of a television, and one block that I could barely lift, for a grand total of $25!
In Whakatane, the annual Tuna Tournament was on.
There were some interesting results, including a some sort of record Albacore Tuna (27.6kg) and a 158kg (320+ lbs) Blue Marlin.
There were a couple of Kingfish, and two sharks brought in while I was watching on Saturday afternoon.
This Mako Shark was 49.2 kgs, I hear there was one almost twice as big brought in on the first day. It was still doing ok after the weigh in, so they took it back out to let it go.
The summer arts festival was also on, including a week long stone carving symposium. They were working with large slabs of Oamaru stone. That stone is quite a bit harder than the Hinuera stone I picked up for Kel, but it looks very nice to work with. It's very smooth and white, and the extra hardness makes it easier to leave bits sticking out without worrying about them breaking off. Too bad Oamaru is way the hell down the east coast of the South Island (between Dunedin and Christchurch). We can't just pop in at the quarry like we can in Hinuera.
Sunday I got out boogie boarding for a while over at Ohope. I picked up some short flippers at the surf shop this time. That helped immensely. I was able to catch just about every decent wave even though the surf wasn't that big.
Normally, I would get the kayak out as well and go gather cockles and pipis, but there's still a paralytic shellfish toxin warning for the area.