Punting on the Avon

Today has been a delight in Christchurch.  We were intending to ride the tram but on arriving in the centre realised they were not running and there were an awful lot of very new/clean/expensive looking orange cones everywhere.  The city was preparing for the visit of Prince Charles and Camilla ... who were*  insert your own phrase here depending on your opinion of the monarchy?

So - after Gill had a minor Victor Meldrew moment - we set off for the Antigua Boat Sheds and enjoyed a relaxing 45mins on the river in a punt all to ourselves and propelled by the young lady in my blip.  We had a good chat about her thoughts on New Zealand and how it compared with her native Oregon and she told us about the sights, mostly of the Botanical Gardens as we serenely drifted along. She was impressed that I asked before photographing her and said an awful lot of people try to take surreptitious selfies unaware that she has a very good view of whatever is going on in her punt.,  She was also not terribly impressed with her home country's current set-up.

After that we toured the gardens, with commentary from a lad from Cumbria! 

I suppose one good thing from the royal visitation was that the large steel barriers in front of the cathedral were removed and before the crowd control fencing went up, we were able to get a couple of relatively unobstructed photographs - see extra.   We did see C&M's motorcade leaving the city - escorted by quite a significant proportion of the local police force and complete with much flashing of blue lights and wailing of sirens.

* you may have gathered we are not great fans of either the notion of monarchy or the current incumbents :-)

No-one of any note is visiting the city tomorrow so we will get our tram ride unhindered!

Thanks to everyone who has commented and/or visited my journal recently - we are away to the Bay of Islands on Sunday and should have more time/space/wifi for returning the complement.

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