Home. Week One in Progress.

Got home the morning of Friday, after a long flight from NZ (and a short one to Auckland) and a long wait in LA (where I was glad it wasn’t the inner circle of hell as it was two years ago), a long red-eye to Philly and a short hop to Albany. There was only a little dozing during any of that. While I was not-sleeping, I was listening to Lincoln in the Bardo as an audiobook. Whoa.

I tried to stay awake because I had to sleep Friday night – because I had to go to work the next day. I dozed for about an hour on Mom’s couch and managed to roll over my glasses, squashing and breaking them. Now that’s a pronblem because I need them to drive and to work. I drive out to the place where I got them and miraculously they had the same frames and were able to pop my lenses into them.

That night I slept pretty good after dinner with mom and packing up the cats.

First day back at work… well.

Saturday night. No sleep at all until just before I would normally get up. Booooo! So I was pretty zombified the whole of Sunday. Nothing could have kept me from sleeping last night.

Woke up this morning when the alarm went off and was granted 45 minutes back in bed because some kitten – yes say it with me – SOME KITTEN – had reset the clock, probably by walking over it. Thankfully ahead not back.

Hopefully the worst is past on all that LOL. All that: worth every single minute of that whole trip. Tomorrow morning the kittens are going to the vets for the first time. All together now – awwww!

A good memory is one trained to forget the trivial. — Clifton Fadiman

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Monday in New Zealand

I’m writing you, gentle reader, from the Interislander Ferry as it bears Marge and me back to the North Island. It’s a great way to pass a few hours, have a bite of dinner, a drink, a cuppa and do a little reading and writing.

I’ve been flying the colors for NaNoWriMo today and have been reading my story so far. Made a few editorial changes but I’ve really been enjoying it. Come November first I want to dive into finding out the rest of the story.

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Today started out rainy and it spit rain here and there all along the way. We got back to Murchison in time for a bit of lunch and then back to Picton in time to see Marge’s friends before heading off to the ferry. You can see the photos from my phone today starting here:

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Of note was seeing a Weka, a large flightless bird who was visiting with one of the young women stopping traffic at one of the 23 construction stops we encountered along the way.

When all comes to all, the most precious element in life is wonder. Love is a great emotion, and power is power. But both love and power are based on wonder. — D. H. Lawrence

Sunday, Morning Rush Hour, NZ

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We encountered not one but two mobs of sheep in our travels today. Might be the best part of the trip, LOL. Yes sheep do have the right of way but you can keep nosing through them and pretty much they clear out. Turns out that a Prius may have a slight disadvantage doing this since it makes no engine type noises to let sheep know you’re coming. There are more sheep photos and coming soon, a video.

Other new photos in the album start around here:

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Learn to enjoy every minute of your life. Be happy now. Don’t wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the futureThink how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it’s at work or with your family. Every minute should be enjoyed, savored. — Earl Nightingale -1989

Tuesday, Akaroa to Oamaru

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We drove (well Marge drove while I gawked at scenery and sheep and took photos) from Akaroa to Oamaru today stopping for lunch along the way at a place called The Jolly Potter in Temuka.

Found our place in Oamaru and did a little walking to stretch our legs. After some computer catch-up time, we had dinner at the Portside restaurant a short distance and overlooking the water. Great meal as we watched the night come over the water and now we’re ready to rest up for tomorrow!

Today is life-the only life you are sure of. Make the most of today. Get interested in something. Shake yourself awake. Develop a hobby. Let the winds of enthusiasm sweep through you. Live today with gusto. — Dale Carnegie

Tea – From the Quote Box

From a packaged tea bag today:

Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world. — T’ien Yiheng

Seriously one of the best things about travel to both NZ and Wales is the excellent tea service. The following was found here.

In accordance with the Chinese practice of prescribing the proper moment and surrounding for enjoying a thing, Ch’asu, an excellent treatise on tea, reads thus:

Proper moments for drinking tea:
When one’s heart and hands are idle.
Tired after reading poetry.
When one’s thoughts are disturbed.
Listening to songs and ditties.
When a song is completed.
Shut up at one’s home on a holiday.
Playing the ch’in and looking over paintings.
Engaged in conversation deep at night.
Before a bright window and a clean desk.
With charming friends and slender concubines.
Returning from a visit with friends.
When the day is clear and the breeze is mild.
On a day of light showers.
In a painted boat near a small wooden bridge.
In a forest with tall bamboos.
In a pavilion overlooking lotus flowers on a summer day.
Having lighted incense in a small studio.
After a feast is over and the guests are gone.
When children are at school.
In a quiet secluded temple.
Near famous springs and quaint rocks.

Moments when one should stop drinking tea:
At work.
Watching a play.
Opening letters.
During big rain and snow.
At a long wine feast with a big party.
Going through documents.
On busy days.
Generally conditions contrary to those enumerated in the above section.

Things to be avoided:
Bad water.
Bad utensils.
Brass spoons.
Brass kettles.
Wooden pails (for water).
Wood for fuel (on account of smoke).
Soft charcoal.
Coarse servant.
Bad-tempered maid.
Unclean towels.
All varieties of incense and medicine.

Things and places to be kept away from:
Damp rooms.
Kitchens.
Noisy streets.
Crying infants.
Hotheaded persons.
Quarrelling servants.
Hot rooms.

Sunday afternoon in Akaroa NZ

We left Christchurch, fortified with breakfast and a look at the Postcards from Antartica exhibit and started down the road to Akaroa. We stopped at Birdlings Flat after having had views of Lake Ellesmere. Quick stopat Little River (Gateway to Banks Peninsula) for a shop and lunch and at Barry’s Bay Cheese and and we were to Akaroa in no time.

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Looks like the drizzling is about stopped. We walked down in the rain to check out shops and maybe get a few groceries, but we found a good place to head tonight for fish and chips so we’ll put off shopping til tomorrow. Also on the agenda for tomorrow – The Giant’s House (The Happiest Garden on Earth)

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Finally, anyone who’s ever been to an event, quilt show or otherwise can attest to this bit of wisdom from the quote box:

There’s nothing like eavesdropping to show you that the world outside your head is different from the world inside your head. — Thornton Wilder

Life — from the quote box

Listen to life, and you will hear the voice of life crying, Be! — James Dillet Freeman