• Annemarie Rawson


It’s been a month since we moved into our new home, here in the Hawke’s Bay in New Zealand. After 3.5 years of living in London and renting for a bit of that time, it‘s been heavenly to start to put down roots again and to have all our worldly possesions arrive from storage.

Our new home

It felt a little like Christmas, rediscovering some of our treasures and also having a fully-equipped and large kitchen to work in again is just wonderful. It's really inspired me to start cooking properly again. I don’t think I ever need to shop for glassware again, unless of course I have a ‘smashing’ time. But never fear I still have several boxes of reserves stored away. Just crazy! We did use to have some long Italian lunches with 18-20 people or French cafe dinners set up in the downstairs part of our old house, so needed lots of glassware and cutlery. I’ll wait till summer rolls around before I try to replicate some of those wonderful times.

There’s still lots of file boxes to sort through and lots of shredding to be done as we’re really trying to be sensible (this time!) about what is necessary to keep (not like when we moved to France). The office is still a tip but it doesn’t bother me as the rest of the house is set up now. Our first dinner guests came on the third night we were here. I call them dinner guests but really they were our good friends, Ginny and Dave, so they don’t really count as guests. It's been a bit non-stop since then as we 'owed' a lot of hospitality - that is until the Delta strain of COVID struck and we went into lockdown.

Part of my large kitchen that I'm making my own, adding my bits & pieces

I can't take credit for the bread - that's from Yeast Coast Bakery in Napier and is the best sour dough, dense, seeded loaf I have ever found.


A snug area - our second sitting room

One of our treasures re-discovered. The road in the painting takes you to where we stayed in Panzano in Chianti, Italy. A fabulous little village.

We have received such an amazing welcome here in the Hawke's Bay and in our little cul-de-sac. Our neighbours have all popped in (prior to lockdown) to say hello and welcome. We're going to have everyone in for morning tea on 5 September so I'll be busy baking for that.

Normally, Steve is biking twice a week and golfing twice a week and is really enjoying life here too. I've joined Mah Jong and the Walkie Talkies group - I'm a very active member, as you can imagine. The nicest thing is that we end the walk with a glass of wine in one of the many wine bars here. As we're a seven minute walk from our delightful village, I can walk home from this as well.

Speak to you again soon.

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