Sunday, January 18, 2009

Not the Greek God …

I had to get up a little promptly on Friday morning so I set my alarm clock for 7.05am … just to make sure. I woke up and bleary eyed looked at the clock. It was exactly 7am.

Wow, I thought to myself, my biological clock is working rather well!

That’s when I heard it – the most awful, loud, clunking noise emanating from somewhere very close by! So that’s what woke me!

I staggered to the window and peered out - legs! Hairy legs at eye level!

It was one of those Am I dreaming? Is this real? kind of moments.

I just had to get a better look. So I pulled up the blind and risked another peep. Yes. I was right first time. It was a pair of legs - attached to a large cement truck.

Mystery solved! Our neighbours are building an extension to their house.
That’s all very well … but at 7 in the morning? Is that fair?

Friday, January 02, 2009

Misery guts …

Can you believe it? That’s what one of my friends and colleagues called me! Why? Because I don’t really enjoy Christmas!

Being in New Zealand and having a warm, bright, mostly sunny Christmas does help, though!

This year, and the first time ever for me, we had a REAL Christmas tree. It was organized by my son-in-law-to-be who is something of a Christmas child. I have to admit the tree looked very nice in a corner of our living space. The smell of pine was also rather pleasant.

I’m not sure what the tree would have thought about the whole thing. It looks rather ordinary now that it has joined others of its kind in our back yard. I rather imagine that it’s beginning to see itself as firewood.

Maybe it’s that time of the year – a new year, new beginnings but it brings to mind a verse from Erasmus Darwin’s Temple of Nature which goes like this:

“HENCE when a Monarch or a mushroom dies,
Awhile extinct the organic matter lies;
But, as a few short hours or years revolve,
Alchemic powers the changing mass dissolve;
Born to new life unnumber’d insects pant,
New buds surround the microscopic plant;
Whose embryon senses, and unwearied frames,
Feel finer goads, and blush with purer flames;
Renascent joys from irritation spring,
Stretch the long root, or wave the aurelian wing.”

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

One Man Went to Mow …

... in this case it was a woman – me!

I bought us a Christmas present: a brand new mower. Isn’t she lovely?

Our old one was so old and temperamental that only df could get it to work. And he wasn’t around. And the grass was very long.

I did think about getting a goat… but reason prevailed and I bought the mower. She is lovely, isn’t she? And she purrs like a baby… hmm… something wrong with this analogy … babies don’t purr. Oh well, you get the idea?
There she was purring away and before I know it I have a catcher full of shorn grass. Wow!

And look at the result. Can you see the lovely straight tracks I made? You can, can’t you?

Anyway, I can see them and I’m happy. Result!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Lunch, Belgian beer and pressies …

It’s nearly Christmas … AGAIN. Doesn’t time fly?

My mother did warn me. I hear her now: The older you get, the faster time flies.

This year I haven’t sent a single Christmas card… what with going off to Fiji … time just ran away from me.

I didn’t miss the office Christmas lunch though. Concentrate on the important thing … that is what I did.

Lunch was something of a side dish. There was lots of Belgian beer…

… presents from our bosses …

… a pretty Christmas hair decoration …

… and a silly tie.

I should mention that we do work in the dairy industry… so strangely appropriate really!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Mangoes, a wedding and a goat…

His name has to be Billy, and isn’t he magnificent?

I’ve been on a trip to Fiji and I ate lots of mangoes. First they was here ...

… then one of them was here ...

…and then it was gone … next please!

The wedding was beautiful …

… and so was the bride.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

My views …

These are the kinds of views I’ll be admiring for the next two weeks.

One man and his horse …

… and even better by night!

Lucky me!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Zoo meander

We went to the zoo on Sunday.

I have to admit to being a bit ambivalent about zoos.

I know they are no longer the places with cement cages and iron bars that were prevalent when I was young …but they are still places where wild animals are kept in captivity.

I appreciate that, nowadays, zoos do a lot of good conservation work …but they are still places where wild animals are kept in captivity.

I know too that they have to keep animals that are not yet endangered … elephants, giraffes, lions, zebras, hypos and the like attract the visitors whose entrance fees help to keep the zoo going. And they are great places for kids to have a look at some of these magnificent creatures and maybe, hopefully get to understand them better …but they are still places where wild animals are kept in captivity.

Posing! This meerkat is the King of his castle.

Please don't touch. Do we really need to tell humans this?

What a beautifully symmetrical backside!

And what about this specimen?

Nice shoes!