Monday, 28 March 2016

Nelson lakes

We went to the Nelson Lakes for a few days over Easter and had a stop at St Arnaud a little community at Lake Rotoiti which is part of Nelson lakes

A classic little steam boat dropped off some tourists

Another end of Lake Rotoiti. The Lakes are beautiful. The only problem is you get eaten by the sand- flies. We were supposed to be armed with bug spray but the bottle was hidden in the suitcase on the first day so we did develop some bumps on arms and legs

We stayed for 3 nights at the Rotoroa lake which is part of Nelson lakes national Park as well. Lake Rotoroa is completely surrounded by Beech forest. Rotoroa is Maori for "Long lake" It is popular for trout fishing and there is a big hunting, fishing and adventure lodge at the start with this view.

If you don't like fishing you can go for a canoe trip of course (bring your own)

We were hiding in the chalet on the left. No TV, Internet or cellphone coverage here, but being in a piece of paradise we didn't miss it at all.

The view from our little house for 3 days. This view  continuously changed by the light and the fog. Gorgeous

We went for a walk in the bush with many ferns and a mossy beech forest floor. The men went up further to a waterfall but my friend had knee problems so we  stuck to the flat forest floor.

A quick walk to the Lake at night for some evening shots

and another and ..................

On the last day we drove  to the West Coast before heading home. You see many Easter island head like carvings on the West coast. They must have come from this shop.

In Greymouth there was plenty of driftwood. They even build a fort from it.

After picking up some nice pieces of driftwood, one more view from the window in the fort. Then fill up the car with Stairway to Heaven from Led Zeppelin and Air from Bach and drive back home through paradise

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Tai Tapu sculpture garden

I went with a friend to the Tai Tapu sculpture garden. An exhibition of contemporary NZ sculptures, held once a year in a native NZ bush garden tucked away in a valley. I had some problems with my camera but still managed to get some shots. After our visit we went to the Raspberry cafe and had a great lunch in the shadow of a birch tree.

Heaven Sent by Llew Summers

Feathered by Rebecca Rose

Oil Snake by Hanna kidd

A photo of my friend underneath an amazing sculpture
A landscape with too many holes, Waiting for St Francis - A Gateway    by Bing Dawe

 the front and the back of another amazing sculpture 
We are shaped by our childhoods by Terry Springer

Not a very good photo of the blue Venus sculpture on the left but I loved it. The owner of the garden had visitors one day and gave them all a piece of clay. The blue Venus was modeled by the post boy who got really into it. These are just a few of them. Annabel Menzies casted the figures in glass and they are now sitting in the fertility Goddess Grove

We also loved this wave of swallows reaching out over the garden
Vortex by Neil Dawson

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Drum festival in Little River

On a warm Sunday morning at the drum festival in little river the drums spoke of the Arabian nights awoken by the light bouncing off  the hills in Okuti valley in Little River

The belly dancers moving gracefully to the drums

Turn on the heartbeat and soul of Africa

Imagine listening to Koffie Fugah from Ghana who teaches many to pick up the rhythm by playing the African drum

Or to let it vibrate in your body learning the African dance

Moving on the beat in the shimmering light

while your feet brush up the dust 

The day ended with Japanese Taiko drumming by the  Takumi group from Christchurch

Taiko was used in ancient Japan nearly 2000 years ago. Taiko uses large drum and is used in religious ceremonies and on festivals. 

The Takumi group has 50 members. They practice twice a week for 2.5 hours and that shows

Michiko with the blue top is a friend who learned to master Taiko drumming since she came to NZ

Thanks to her and her family we were introduced to this amazing festival

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

A prestine beach in Abel Tasman has just been bought by the people of NZ for the people of NZ and anyone :)

See the white stretch of beach with the green dot. As an exclamation mark on top of  Abel Tasman national Park it screams to be visited by all and it's possible now Yihaa

It was bought by the people of NZ through the crowdfunding site "Give a little", for the people of NZ. The beach was in private hands. Something that happens more and more in NZ.  We in NZ think that the beach should be for everyone.

A Wellington lawyer owned the bank 6 million and had put the beach up for sale for 2 million.
Duane Major who lives in Spreydon, Christchurch started the campaign to ask people to help buy the beach. I bought some graines of sand and a splash of water and followed the process slowly. From almost 40000 buyers over 2.2 million was raised. As it was a tender there was a bit of waiting involved but late last night the beach was handed over and so everyone was rewarded.

Ma tini ma mano ka rapa te whai.
By many, by thousands, the work (project) will be accomplished.

The work is accomplished! NZ has a new PUBLIC beach 

Sunday, 21 February 2016

A wonderful day out with blogging friends

We spend a terrific time with Diane and Bill, blogging friends from Australia. In the morning we headed off to Akaroa and had lunch together. What a treasure to meet such lovely people and a pleasure to show them around.

We did something different this time and went to Fisherman's Bay garden, about 20 minutes from Akaroa. This private garden is an absolute paradise with gorgeous flowers and native plants, great art, like the corrugated cow and stunning views.

You never get enough from the views from Akaroa either

I hadn't been to the Giant House for a while and took Bill and Diane there. I hadn't seen these swinging girls yet with trumpets on their head.

The hot summer put the whimsical and colourful mosaic creations in the limelight. We then got back to Christchurch again. A fantastic day