Friday, December 23, 2011

Around the World: Kerikeri Orchard

December 23, 1991

I joined some of my hostel mates on a 4km trek through the woods to see Rainbow Falls.  On the way, we passed several swimming holes, called fairy pools, but from the trail there was no safe way to get down to them.  The falls were really beautiful, draining into a fairy pool that we were all able to swim in.

Rainbow Falls, Kerikeri
Photo by James Shook, from Wikipedia Commons

In the afternoon, I visited the Orange Centre.  The owner of the orchard led a tour around the groves of kiwis, mandarins, oranges, blackberries, tangerellos, and offered me a huge orange-like fruit that is the result of crossing a grapefruit with a mandarin (I think), called an Ugli.  The skin is mottled, like a golf ball so I suppose it's not the most attractive fruit in the orange family, but it's really sweet and juicy.

Kiwi na arvore

I learned that kiwis need to meet exacting criteria to be marketable.  The slightest flaw in shape or size or marks on the skin and they are tossed away.  On the tour was a guy from London who once worked on a kiwi farm in Sydney with a friend of his.  They would gather up all the discarded kiwi and bring them to the docks, where they would trade them for vodka and clothing with Russian sailors. 

Stopped at the LiquorLand on the way back to the hostel to pick up some festive cheer for the trip to Rotorua tomorrow.

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"The Earth is but one country, and we its citizens...
you are the fruit of one tree and the leaves of one branch."

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