This past week or so has been an easy one in which to count the ways in which we as Otago folk, are blessed.
Whether it's down on the beach at St Clair (where, with a lad in junior surf lifesaving, I seem to spend half my free time), at home in the garden (where I should spend more time), or out and about on our roads (where I want to spend more time), our recent spell of superb weather has made it easy to feel great about the part of the world where we live.
It's grand to see others - especially from outside Otago - enjoying the golden weather too. In the motoring realm, these have included the owners, families and friends of more than 25 classic Bentley cars.
Coming, with their cars, from all parts of the world, they started an extended tour of New Zealand from Christchurch about 10 days ago. Otago and Southland have been their haunt of late.
Their time in Otago was always going to involve some great roads; indeed, one of the reasons groups like this come to New Zealand on a fairly regular basis is the fabulous motoring that awaits.
That it has also coincided with a superb spell of weather is the icing on the cake as far as the international motoring reputation of our region is concerned.
Of course, overseas visitors have not been the only keen motorists enjoying our roads and fine weather: while driving to work on Tuesday morning I spied a gathering of elderly locally owned cars - many of them open-topped - at the Vintage Car Club premises on Forbury Rd, and envied the motoring undoubtedly lying ahead. It was a similar story on Wednesday, when I spotted a 1950s MGTF out and about by the beach.
My only hope now is that the golden weather lasts through the first two weeks of February. Never mind the surf competitions or school camp - I have a new Mazda MX-5 arriving for a week this coming Thursday, and plan to spend as much time as possible driving it with the roof down.
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