Saturday, 30 April 2011

On a roll!

Both Age and I had our first tennis winter competition matches. His team won, and my team too! A team consists of 4 players and you play doubles with each of your team mates. In total a team plays 6 matches, and we won 3 of those matches. I was in all 3 matches that we lost!!! Weakest link????? On countback we won with 29 games over 23. It was a very cold evening by the way, still, crisp and almost freezing.

Then today I played my Sloss Cup finals with golf, a matchplay event. Jean and I won 2 matches sometime in March, then the rest of the field had to battle it out in all sorts of flights during April, and finally today was Finals day.

I was playing crap the last couple of weeks, but luckily for me I really like the tension that comes with matchplay. Anyway, we went down 2 holes, then square for quite a few holes and on the 9th hole we had those 2 holes back, so all was even again.

Then we went square till the 13th or so, where we lost a hole. Finally on the 18th we were able to win another hole, so after 18 holes we were all square again!! That meant we had to keep going, so off we went from no1 for the second time. That hole was a shared hole again, so we had to battle on. Finally we won the next hole, which means that we won the finals, yayyyyy!!! I am very proud of us :-))

And then the weather, just couldn't believe it. It started off frosty, but we reached 23 degrees, all sunny, no wind. Bliss!!

- Evelyn

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Easter weekend in Golden Bay

We went away with Easter to Pohara, Golden Bay, with James and Gill. We loaded everything in their van on Friday morning and off we went! The weather forecast wasn't very flash, it was supposed to rain the whole weekend, from Friday afternoon till Monday morning!
On Friday we made the most of the weather by playing 9 holes of golf at the Pohara Golf Club. That is a scruffy old golf course, where Age managed to hit 4 balls out of bounds on the beach on the 5th tee. On the beach he found a woman whose dog had a field day with all those golf balls coming over from the golf course!
After playing golf we settled into our bach (holiday home - pronounce 'betsj'), and I think if I remember well that not long after that the rain started. We made dinner and had a nice evening in.

Saturday started wet, wetter, wettest. It was so wet that it didn't make sense to go out and try to do something. We actually did go out and tried to do something :-) We thought maybe we could do a short walk at the Pupu Springs, Australasia's clearest fresh water springs. A nice short drive, but too wet to get out of the van. Instead we went to a nearby gallery and after that had an early lunch at the Mussel Inn. When we got home from our adventures we played cards, enjoyed the enormous amount of food we brought with us, and suddenly, late in the afternoon there was a break in the clouds - just enough to go out for a beach walk. Great to sniff some fresh air and to watch the threatening clouds around us.

Sunday was wet too! But again at some stage during the afternoon the rain became a bit less persistent. So we took our chances and did the walk to the Wainui Falls. According to James and Gill usually a nice walk with along a gentle stream with a lovely waterfall at the end. Well, the gentle stream was now an angry river and the lovely waterfall was a raging and thundering wall of water coming down. Quite spectacular!

We couldn't believe it, but by Monday morning there seemed no more rain left, and it became actually quite sunny. We vacated our bach and drove once more to the Pupu Springs. As said before, these springs are fresh water springs, where fresh water comes to the surface with an amount of 4000 bath tubs of water per second if I'm correct. The water is very clear, you're not allowed to touch it in any way, as they are afraid that the springs will get polluted in some way, for example by transferring toxic algae or bacteria. And the springs have a high spiritual meaning for Maori.
There is a nice walk around the springs - as a lot of water bursts from underground through the surface, it creates quite a large river and other waterways.

The water is crystal clear! And the pic on the right below shows the whirls in the water where it comes up to the surface, this is the actual start of the springs - quite a lot of water here.

And to finish our weekend off we went for a picnic to Kaiteriteri, near Abel Tasman Park, on the way home.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

A nice weekend

We had a nice weekend. The rain poored down from Friday morning till Sunday morning, which made for a good time indoors reading books, baking a cake, playing around with computers and making nice fires in the woodburner.

There was a dry gap on Friday afternoon, and I played a couple of holes of golf. Conversation with my golf buddy Anne: hi Anne, are you coming this way or what?
A: you're not waiting for me on the golf course, are you?
E: uuuh yes
A: but it was pooring down at 1pm!
E: uuuuh yes, but it's 4.15 now...

Anyway she put golf out of her head earlier that day because of the weather :-)

Today I played golf again, a proper round with my regular buddies, and Age went for a game of tennis. I am actually going to enter the tennis winter competition, we practised last weekend, it was a long time ago, but I still kind of like it.

And surprise surprise, Age booked a high tea for this afternoon :-) Isn't he just the man!

- Evelyn

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Vege garden update

Although autumn is definitely here, there's a lot going on in the vege garden!
  • Kohlrabi is doing fine, after a bit of a difficult start. Has probably something to do with me letting the tiny plants dry out earlier in March :-) According to my 'plan' we should be able to harvest this month.
  • Cauliflower finally shows some enthusiasm to grow too. Seems a slow maturing plant! We should be able to harvest next month, but I have difficulties believing that really.
  • Ah, then my leeks! They are doing very well, we might be able to harvest the odd one this month, but definitely next month. That'll be chicken and leek pie for dinner!
  • Beetroot should be ready to harvest soon. I can see the beetroots, and I can also see that I accidentally planted two of them together a couple of times, so the beets might not have a lot of space to grow.
  • Radishes! They are a great crop, and ready now. I have multi-coloured radishes: red, purple, white, yellow :-) I bet you didn't know they existed!
  • Borekale and Fennel should also be ready to harvest this month, but they may need a bit longer. Borekale is doing great after a hesitant start, we better start looking for rookworst (smoked sausage???? sounds ridiculous) soon! That's why I planted it, to eat with rookworst, although I haven't seen rookworst anywhere in the supermarkets here. Don't send us a couple from Holland, you might get arrested :-)
  • There is more, but nothing else ready for harvesting. Had some troubles with my carrots, you would think they were the easiest crop ever, but I figured that maybe if I give them some water (!) they'll actually might have a chance, instead of disappearing when they're 2mm tall.
Temperatures here currently 18-22 degrees, and at night 8-14 or so.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Another conversation

(listening to Ray Charles)

A: so, do you suddenly like Ray Charles?
E: yes, had enough of all that other crap
A: ah
- silence-
E: haven't we seen a movie about Ray Charles?
A: yes
E: can't remember what the name of that movie was. What was it?
A: uhhh Ray Charles?
E: (delighted) yes! That was it!

- Evelyn

Conversation in the car

In the car, just after picking Age up from the airport:

E: by the way, i'm gonna have a haircut tomorrow!
A: me too!
E: oh? Where?
A: Salon Ursula
E: me too!
A: oh? When?
E: 9 in the morning. And you?
A: 10 in the morning
E&A: this is ridiculous!
A: you need to be quick then, because I need the car too to get there
E: can't, am meeting with a client afterwards. Take the motorbike!
A: grmbll (translation: not good for my hair)

- Evelyn

More watercolours class

Here a few more paintings from my watercolours class. Next week is the last week already, can't believe that 10 weeks went by so quickly!

I'm not overly enthusiastic about the painting below, although I really like the yellow and orange wash. The photos don't do the colours justice! The pier is done with charcoal, as I needed something very dark. I think I just rushed it too much, and I don't like landscapes very much anyway.

I thought I lost it, but found myself and my own style back again when I moved away from those landscapes, seascapes, trees and flowers, and started to work on painting glass and transparency - now we're talking :-)

Love my bottles! Age doesn't, he prefers 'boats at sea', sooooo 1986 and boooooorrrringgggggg.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Wintertime and wireless doorbell

It's that time of the year again! Daylight saving has ended :-(
To celebrate winter Age has been doing some DIY to close off air vents to the sunroom's foundation, and I just made a roaring fire in the woodburner. With a cup of tea, Caro Emerald and home baked cake all is fine with us here.

A while ago we ordered some bits and pieces over the internet and it finally all arrived last week: a wireless doorbell, a movement sensor, and a box that makes doorbell sounds. So now people can actually press the doorbell, and we are able to hear it in the study (if we don't forget to take the soundbox with us to the study :-)). Same with the sensor - sometimes you really get a heart attack when working in the study and someone decides to walk around the house to see whether there is anybody home. They can't do that anymore now, the sensor will pick it up when they're near the house and a second doorbell-like sound will go off.

It also works on the car and the cat! Very funny, if I leave the house by car - ding dong- Ziva goes to the neighbour and comes past the sensor - ding dong - and when I come back - ding dong - ziva comes back too - ding dong.