Friday, October 29, 2010

Just like Maui used to make

Unless you have a very nice friend or family member with a very large car, the best way to see Shine falls (Hawke's Bay's best waterfall) via the Boundary Stream Track would be to have half of your party start on one side and the other half on the other. Each group would walk in opposite directions, pass each other somewhere in the middle, and then drive the other group's car home. Did that make any sense?

Perhaps that would not be the best way, as one of the groups would be walking downstream (downhill) and the other would be walking uphill for 4 hours. So we went with a more complicated plan: Two cars drove to the finish, everybody crammed into our car, and we drove 15 km (over gravel roads) to the start. Here's a photo of one of the times we had to stop due to car sick passengers. There are 8 people scattered around the car.

Here's a little bit of Boundary Stream (taken while crossing):

Mi amigo Jason thinking about crossing the stream (and about to splash me):

Why yes, that is a giant boulder that nearly crushed the "Beware of Giant Boulders" sign.

A little bit of paradise (you have no idea how difficult it was to get this close after a few days of heavy rain)

Photographing water moving that quickly is challenging as 1)the heavy canopy of trees allows very little light through and 2) the falls are spraying a heavy mist on everything within view.

Like many reserves, this one is surrounded by farmland...or more correctly, sheepland. Get in line, you sheep.

In other news, here's my very Kiwi emergency repair of an old pipe in our garden.

In still other news, here's my brand new (to me) kayak:

Saturday, October 16, 2010

With a Model A out front, and a 20s/30s band in the back, it was quite a party.

Nico and I didn't look too ridiculous as a few other people also dressed up.

Either the turnout was surprisingly good, or Kiwis drink a whole lot. (It is not evident from the picture, but that is a very big box.)

And to answer your question, the most white russians I have ever made at a time while wearing a top hat is: 10

Friday, October 15, 2010

We are officially unpacked.

Alternative title: And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

In other news, I made a new friend in the garden. She has promised not to eat my brain.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

The Big Laskowski

At our new address, we received invitations to open house events at two competing bowling clubs. [In case you didn't click that link, bowling in NZ is what one in the US might call "lawn bowling"...whereas what one in the US would call bowling would be called "ten pin" here.]

We were planning on attending the (closer) event at the Port Ahuriri Bowling Club, but as we walked down the 200 stairs to get there, it was evident that the members of the Port Ahuriri Bowling Club do not know how to throw an open house.

And so we opted for the Bluff Hill Bowling Club open house. Here's Nicole and our bowling coach, Rod. (Notice there are actually people in attendance.)

A little walk around downtown Napier turned up this gem: The Centennial Gardens.

Sitting in an English garden waiting for the sun

Our new house sits on just about a quarter acre of land (AKA the Kiwi Dream). Fortunately for me, much of that land is taken up by the house and the driveway(s). Still, the backyard is bigger than anything I have ever had to manage, and as the previous owners apparently stopped caring for the place after they accepted our offer, I was left with a fair amount of work to do. I do not suppose that I will ever look forward to gardening; and after working on it for an hour or two everyday this week, I'm only half done...

Sunday, October 03, 2010

The unpacking started with the important things.

Alternate title: Why yes, that is a wine cellar