Archive for September, 2013

September’s weather hasn’t been the greatest, especially in the weekends.

Last weekend I headed over to my bro’s in the Wairarapa.  He had invited neighbours over for dinner and invited me too.  H was working so couldn’t make it.  There were also nine lambs to view!

The weather was crap.  It started off sunny Saturday morning but it was drizzling most of the way.  I like to take snaps while I’m driving.  I know this sounds a really bad idea, but I have my point-and-shoot camera at the ready on the seat beside me.  When I want to I pick it up, turn it on, aim it in the general direction and snap a photo, all with one hand and all while keeping my eyes on the road, and it takes about five seconds – equivalent to fiddling around with music.  Because it’s basically photographing blind, I like to see the results after I get to my destination.  A few examples:

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Obviously with the first one I was stationary, waiting for the train.  Call it experimental, if you like, but I like some of the results.

There were indeed nine little lambs at bro’s, but one of them was sick.  It was bloated and they tried all the usual remedies and hoped it would pull through.  Its sibling had had the same problem and was ok.



They’re so cute at that age.  Then they get fat and boring.

After playing Settlers of Catan, we were sitting at the table and I heard a quail.  Sis-in-law mentioned that she’d once counted 20 quail in front of the house.  It wasn’t until I got up that I saw that there were several quail there while she was speaking!  I counted 14.


The dinner was very nice (as always) and bro’s neighbours were interesting.  One of the women (who just talked and talked and talked) was apparently 60 but she looked in her early 50s.  I wondered what her secret was, apart from dyeing her hair.  She did not look anywhere near 60.

Return journey was much more pleasant weatherwise, and I liked the results of my blind shooting.

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I even got a decent snap of my favourite rocky hill.

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This whole taking-photos-while-driving idea of mine started because the roads are narrow, often with no shoulders, so there is nowhere to stop to take photos of the countryside.  My experiment started out of frustration.  So many beautiful views out there and no way to capture them unless you’re walking (which I wouldn’t recommend).  Having said that, it’s not something I do regularly.

This weekend is extremely windy and rainy, so I’m not venturing out today.  I’ll catch up on things I didn’t get to do last weekend.

Unfortunately, there’s also another “time-waster” which has hold of our attention at the moment.  Grand Theft Auto V.  People are surprised that a female, and especially one my age, plays video games such as GTA.  I love it.  I first bought a PSOne for the kids back in the 90s and I enjoyed it so much, I got hooked on certain games.  Now we have an Xbox 360.  There are only a few games I enjoy playing and the GTA series is my favourite.  This latest one is very pretty.

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I used to play ‘cowboys and Indians’ with my brother as a kid, and played with toy cars, so this is a natural extension.  Besides, I’ve never been a particularly feminine woman (dislike shopping, cooking, the colour pink, etc, etc).  I don’t think I’ve grown up either.  Being orphaned at 24 and living without a partner for over 20 years has meant that I do what I like. 🙂

It’s wild out there – a perfect day to stay inside.

Onto the next thing on my list of things to do…


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A mild winter, but the spring is cold so far.  A gloomy morning this morning, although there was a glimpse of sunshine, briefly.

Last weekend I headed down to the Karori bird sanctuary, Zealandia, with three others.  I drove to A’s in Palmy, then she drove to J’s in Levin, met A there, and we continued on down.  The weather was good – some sunshine, but quite cold.

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We were in Wellington to see Sirocco, the kakapo, but that was in the evening (since he’s nocturnal), so we spent the afternoon wandering around the sanctuary.


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The shags were noisy, but entertaining.



I had my first ever encounter with takahe(s?),



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and saw, for the first time in my life, a saddleback!  Well worth the entry fee.

We headed down Tinakori Road for something to eat before our evening encounter with Sirocco.

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Unfortunately, there were several children on the ‘tour’ to see Sirocco in his glass enclosure.  This meant that we had to vie with what felt like multitudes of kids and their parents to get a decent view, let alone a photo.


The bright lights (outside the enclosure) and reflective glass didn’t help.  When finally we managed to get a good view (after the kids were bored but still hung around getting in the way),  it was time to leave.


It was lovely to see Sirocco, but it seemed such a short time and I just felt slightly annoyed with all the kids.  Childless ‘tours’ would be great – perhaps the later ones would be better, when hopefully kids are in bed.

Good trip to Wellington, nevertheless.  It was very cold under a starlit sky back in Levin, but the usual cloud (and warmer) back home.  I think we all decided we wanted to do more such trips to various bird sanctuaries around the region.

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