That Was Then

Back ‘then’, Sunday just gone, we went for a drive into Central Otago on a day that just got better and better. We drove over the high country route via Moa Flat and came down into the orchards of Ettrick, then stopped at Turquoise Cafe. I’ve done a real nice post previously on Turquoise Cafe.

Inside Turquoise Cafe (orchard packing shed before). Taken by Nigel.

Window in Turquoise Cafe, facing the highway and hills. Taken by Nigel.

We both chose delicious doris plum sponge cake and cream. Photo taken by Nigel.

I glanced at the floor, liked what I saw, thought it was worth a shot – Liz.

floor_turquoise

We left Turquoise and eventually ended up in Ophir for our next cafe stop – our first ever visit to Pitches Store. Nigel took this lovely photo of his ‘Coconut Cream’ tea with gingerbread loaf and rhubarb spread – again our food choice was the same so I can tell you it was really delicious!

That was ‘then’.


From 11.59pm tonight our country of New Zealand goes into Level 4 lockdown and we’ll only have what are deemed essential services open. It was bad enough today with many shops and services already closed or severely restricted. Looks like that’s the end of our dental appointments in early April – darn!

It poured with rain much of today, and actually, this morning we had our first snow, quite a spread on the Blue Mountains this morning!

I’m not going to like the new ‘now’ – initially for a month but could go on for months – who knows how many?ย  I don’t dispute that we have to do it and the earlier the better but things have moved so quickly over the last couple of days.

Last I heard, NZ has 155 ‘confirmed and probable’ cases of Covid-19. Most are people who’ve returned from overseas or people close to them. But we now also have four via community transmission hence the lockdown.


Text by Liz, photos by Nigel unless attributed to me; Exploring Colour (2020)

21 thoughts on “That Was Then

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  1. I like your priorities, Liz, cafe stops and yummy looking cakes. But what a difference a day makes. Taking one day at a time is the best we can do right now. I wish you well.

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    1. I’m glad that like you, we live in the country. Even though I’m in a little village, it’s very rural here. We can get out for a walk any time we want, and we’re still allowed to drive a car. Would hate to live in a city right now.

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      1. The good things about the city are that you are close to essential shops and if you do get sick you are close to a hospital. If you’re in the countryside you have to drive to a shop and hope they have what you need, and if you get sick…

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        1. Oh I know. Glad we don’t live in a remote spot like we used to. Here we’re fortunate to have a small but good supermarket, a tiny pharmacy, and quite a good hardware shop (although they may only be allowed to open for the building trade). We also have a proper medical centre with a landing area alongside for helicopters. It’s an easy walk to the little supermarket from our house. I’m tremendously grateful to have so much. I hope you stay well, at least you’re heading into spring and nicer weather so you have an advantage in that respect!

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  2. My thoughts are with you, Liz and Nigel, as you start this new period. No matter how well it goes, it will surely be “different.” I am a bit of an introvert and am used to spending a lot of time alone, so the current restrictions here, which are not as severe as the New Zealand lockdown, do not change my life very much. If you have even the slightest amount of introversion (and even if you don’t), you might enjoy reading this delightful post by another photographer that greeted me in my WordPress Reader this morning. https://stamandphotography.com/2020/03/24/the-extrovert-in-exile/

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    1. I laughed! enjoyed the post very much. Being at home doesn’t bother me in the slightest but we really love the times we go for a long drive and visit favourite or new cafes along the way. Autumn is the best time to do that here and we’ll miss those carefree drives and cafe-stops. Seeing as Nigel already works from home it’s not a huge change for us. It’s been a bit fraught trying to find various things we need before lockdown with different supermarkets running out of different things presumably due to panic buying. Every shop that’s open has different rules about how you conduct yourself as a customer so it’s really weird having to be continually careful about navigating one’s way around!

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  3. The UK has also gone into lockdown mode today. It feels like the correct thing to do, but is a very strange experience. This week, at last, spring is in the air but we are required to stay indoors, save for 30 minutes exercise daily, which is to be taken at least 2 metres away from anyone else. When will I see a cream tea again?

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    1. The restriction to 30 minutes exercise daily is really draconian! It’s tough with spring arriving too – just when you want to be out and about making the most of such a welcome season. With us being in autumn I think it’s right for our Govt to really clamp down now and try to get some control over this virus before winter sets in and makes everything so much more complicated. Best wishes!

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  4. It sure is odd staying at home so much. Glad you got this little trip in before the lockdown. I can still go outside and wander taking photos, but staying away from people. The streets of Winnipeg are pretty quiet. Take care.

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    1. We’re not overly restricted in terms of going outside for a walk or even a drive although we’re supposed to just be doing essential things when driving I think. I totally understand it too, gotta try and get on top of this threat before winter sets in. If we can, then winter won’t be such a nightmare.

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