Embracing Our Culture

Embracing our culture must surely be the same as embracing the heritage of our ancestors. Everything that made them who they were, has some impact on who we are today. How important is your heritage to you? As a keen genealogist, my heritage is a vital part of who I feel I am. As I begin to write this, I’m thinking of the differences between the terms heritage and culture. So I am including a couple of definitions. Heritage is … Continue reading

Visit to Whakatane

Recently Whakatane was named the best city in New Zealand. Why had this town beaten every other in the country? Prior to an annual reunion nearby, we decided to spend a few days in Whakatane. I certainly wanted to find out what was on offer. This area is suffering more than many. The lack of international tourists has adverse effects on many industries and towns in New Zealand. But I believe Whakatane’s suffering is more poignant. A huge portion of … Continue reading

Owning A Pet

Owning a pet can be problematic. Especially now the world is opening up again and travel is fast becoming possible again. We’ve resisted pets for many years. Initially, I was certain I could never replace my German Shepherd. But between his passing and our retirement, I couldn’t really say why we’ve never had another pet. But since retirement, I am so pleased we don’t own a pet. Owning a pet brings huge responsibility. We like to travel and travelling and … Continue reading

New Zealand’s Humble Kiwi

Today I’ve decided to write about New Zealand’s humble kiwi. Which one you might ask. I imagine Americans recognise only one kiwi, the delicious green or gold fruit. But we do have a couple more which are so much more common to us. New Zealand’s national bird is the kiwi. And for every New Zealander when travelling overseas, we use and are all known as kiwis. Let’s get rid of the humble kiwi fruit. Despite its name, this fruit is … Continue reading

Me and Gardening

Me and gardening have never shared any affinity. In fact, for me, gardening isn’t even just a chore. It’s something to be avoided at all costs. I run a mile to avoid any gardening work. Gardening should be in my blood. My mother was a terrific gardener. In her later years, probably the last forty of her life, she would spend most of her daylight hours poking around in the garden. When I was a kid, our vegetable garden wasn’t … Continue reading

Fun Reunion

It’s that time of year for our annual fun reunion. These reunions began fifteen years ago. After the death of a friend, some of my husband’s Navy intake pledged to meet once a year. The alternative appeared to be meeting at funerals. So we take turns to organise an event. Every Feb/Mar we travel from around the North Island to somewhere and spend a weekend together. Always a long-anticipated and fun reunion. For this year’s reunion, we congregated at Ohope … Continue reading

Jetboating The Wairaurahiri River

The idea of jetboating sends an immediate rush of adrenaline through me. I’ve never been a particularly adventurous person. The idea of bungy jumping or bridge swinging fills me with a sickening sense of vertigo. I don’t hanker to jump out of a perfectly good aeroplane, or fly though the air attached to a few thin cords. But jetboating? Now there’s a thrill I can enjoy. I found the Wairaurahiri River jet boat service while surfing the net prior to … Continue reading

My Shetland Roots

A history of my Shetland roots arrived in the mail recently. A cousin sent me a copy of “The Sandness Story” compiled by the Sandness History Group. It tells the history of the small town of Sandness, where my great grandmother originated. I felt like I waited for weeks for it to travel across the world. Perhaps not as long as the ship carrying my ancestors took to get to New Zealand but when I was excited to read it, … Continue reading

2021 Was A Different Year

I believe the whole world would agree 2021 was a different year. Another year many of us will want to put behind us. Even in our wildest dreams (or nightmares) or science fiction books and movies could many of us have expected a pandemic that appears to have no end. Personally, I’m hoping Covid will be similar to the 1918 Spanish flu. I think that took about three years to lose its terrible hold. If true, then maybe Covid will … Continue reading

Manapouri and Te Anau

I found some lovely images of Lakes Manapouri and Te Anau from the South Island trip we did last year and rather than leave them sitting in a folder I thought I would share some. Of course, I admit to being very biased regarding which part of New Zealand is the most beautiful. My southern heritage reigns strong and true even after so many years living in the North Island. Lake Manapouri is pristine on a good day and we … Continue reading