President's Report - February 2006
I have just spent a week at a conference in the far north of New Zealand. The conference was held at Taipa Bay Resort, just 100 metres from the beach. Sue accompanied me, for moral support. Needless to say, the weather and the water were both warm, and we had a very pleasant week. A highlight of the conference was a day trip to Cape Reinga (almost as far north as you can go in NZ), and then a drive back down Ninety Mile Beach in a 40-seat bus. The beach is apparently an official road, though not recommended for 2 wheel drive cars, as the sand filled shell of a Mercedes sedan testified half way along.
These days, Peugeots on kiwi roads are pretty much similar to the range that we commonly see in Australia. In other words, older (pre-1990) models are rare. However, Sue and I were pleasantly surprised at Taipa Bay, when an immaculate red 403 snoozed past one morning. The only other pre-1990 Pug we saw was a red 404 ute, quietly grazing (and rusting) in a paddock beside the highway just north of Whangarei (Auckland PCC please note!).
By the way, standard unleaded petrol was selling for about NZ$1.42/litre and diesel was NZ$1.06/litre while we were in NZ - which makes owning a diesel Pug even more attractive than here (our hire car was a very unlovable petrol-driven Ford Meteor).
Meanwhile, back in Canberra, planning is well advanced for the Easter Pageant. Although registrations have been coming in from other states, local club members have been slow off the mark. Our pageant committee, led by John Bower, is working hard to ensure that this will be a terrific event.
I urge all local members to attend either for the dinner only (cost $40), or as a full registrant (cost $67, which includes dinner, a show-bag of goodies and entry to all events (concourse, novelty trial etc). To finalise numbers for all events, you must register and pay by Friday, 17 March at the very latest - but don't wait until then, why not do it now! The Pageant only comes to Canberra once every seven years or so, so don't miss the opportunity to participate.
Our first club night for the year will be held at the Italo-Australian Club at 8 pm on Tuesday 28 February, with guest speaker, Graham Gittins from the ACT Council of Motor Clubs. The council is largely responsible for organising the annual Wheels exhibition, in which the PAC has participated for many years. However, their activities are many and varied, and this would be a good opportunity to hear the latest. Speaking of Wheels, it will be held on Sunday 12 March. Intending participants should contact Brad Pillans or Rick Phillips to confirm their attendance.
Keep on Pugging,