A Whakatāne woman had a life-changing Matariki after winning $12.25 million in last Wednesday's Lotto’s Powerball draw.
The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, was out running errands last Wednesday when she decided to buy a power dip for that night’s draw.
“I was out doing some chores as I usually do when I remembered it was Wednesday and thought I’d pick up a ticket,” she said.
The woman decided to check her ticket the next day as she waited for an appointment.
She said she was left “really shocked” when the winning music played and the Lotto operator took her to one side, quietly telling her she had won.
“When the lady showed me the receipt, I thought it said $1200, but she soon told me, ‘not $1200… $12 million.’
“I didn’t know what to do, but luckily the people in the shop helped me. I have no idea how I still managed to go to my appointment after that.”
The woman then went home and called her son to tell him the good news.
Her son said she was "cool as a cucumber" as she "calmly told me she had won Lotto".
"She didn’t tell me how much, so when I went round and saw the ticket and claim form, I was blown away,” he said.
He said the drive up to Auckland to claim the prize in person was "surreal".
“We were chatting about all the things mum could do with the money,” he said. “First on her list is getting a new phone.”
With the win safely claimed, the woman said she "can't wait to celebrate" with her family.
“I think we’ll have some fine wine and dining while we’re in Auckland,” she said.
The woman said while she plans to take some time to let her win sink in before making any big decisions, some home renovations and a trip to the South Island is on the agenda.
“This win represents freedom and will help our family a lot.
“There are some things I want to do around the house, so it came at a really good time.
“I’d also love to go on a helicopter flight around the South Island.”