Monday, 17 November 2014

When death comes by Mary Oliver


Some beauty from our garden and from one of my favourite poets:
Mary Oliver 
When Death Comes
When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse
to buy me, and snaps his purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox;
when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,
I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering;
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?
And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.
When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened
or full of argument.
I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

Friday, 7 November 2014

My christchurch rap

 My Christchurch rap

Christchurch has its heart ripped out, we shout; It’s a pity, this city, now full of cones and stones, and cars, where once were shops and bars, and people had no hurry, no worry. Then houses were old, now they are sold or rented out for gold, and people get cold, live now on the street because of greed. But houses are coming one day, with some delay, we may all have an EQ proof, roof again and a city full of huzzle and buzzle, in a jacket of glass and steel, with a modern feel and what a blast of the past, when we see an old building pop up, next to a new shop, and our hearts go out, we shout; what a delight, we might, think of the old days, before the earth quake, we shake it off, as we always do, walk out of the blue and get back into the huzzle and the buzzle of a city that lives and makes us belong, This is a great, dream made, end, my friend of my Christchurch rap song.
Source: Taken 21 October 2014
The empty heart of Christchurch. It is 4 years ago that we were in the middle of continues earthquakes and this is how Christchurch looks now. No parking problems as we have one big
parking place on empty space. I have seen one new building and the foundation of many others
It will all take at least 10 years before we are completely back on track. Just before our retirement. Good timing.
The coloured spots down under, in the middle is the restart mall where the container shops are. 

I walked with the meetup photo group through the city centre in the evening and we made some pictures of the buildings left. The meetup groups here are growing like mushrooms. Do you have them in your country as well? It's quite fun. You join online and rsvp if you want to go on a trip with like minded people.

The light was good when I took this one. A freshly demolished building. Still many to go.

You see containers everywhere holding the façade of buildings to try to safe them

Often there is only the front façade left as you can see here.

 I never knew there was a theatre in this building, alongside Manchester Street. Now you look straight onto the fallen seats. Let's hope I can show you some new buildings soon! 

Sunday, 12 October 2014



We went to Wellington on my daughters birthday. We spend a great time together. Me, my husband, my daughter and her boy friend went to an Italien restaurant eating antipasto and lasagna. Walking through the city we enjoyed the endless shops and restaurants in lively Wellington. A sharp contrast to the Christchurch city center.
Wellington or Wellywood in the South of the North Island starred in the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit. It is the city where Te papa is and "The world of wearable arts" which was on this weekend. So much to see and to do in the capital of NZ .

On Saturday morning William and I had a walk along the wharf and visited a museum. 

                                             Jump                                     Love letters to Wellington in the
                                                                                        museum of  Wellington City and sea

We listened to the Maori legend "how Maui brought fire to the world" told and played
by some holograms which was really cool

We walked further and on this spot next to the fountain, we had the best gelato ever

In the afternoon we went for a walk on the beach at Island Bay

....................with the high lights of  our trip Two wonderful beautiful young people

Afterwards I had a coffee with my daughter. Then the two of us went  to the
city gallery to experience "the refusal of time".  In a dark room chairs were chattered

all over the place and the above was shown on screens all around us and there was
a great variety of sounds. An amazing experience of the elusive nature of time

So what did we think of the middle of Middle earth.............precious

Monday, 6 October 2014

C1 Expresso

On Sunday we walked through the still empty (empty as in empty spaces) city and went to a favourite cafe in High Street; C1 Expresso.  Except from serving great coffee and food  it has many quirky and cool things.

 It is now in one of the very few old buildings left; a former post office build in 1930

Opposite the cafe you see the "Woods from the trees" a sculpture by Regan Gentry. It is build with
waste wood from earthquake damaged homes.

Inside you can get a glass of water from a sewing machine

or like my friend get sparkling water from a dentist well

Want to go to the toilet than go to the book shelves and...Open Sesame.....

but the coolest thing is to receive a mini burger in a slider which is send through the cafe by pneumatic tube. There is a whole tube system attached to the ceiling with tubes going down to the tables. When you hear a ring you can pick up your dinner. These tubes were used by banks in the past to put money in and here some information about its history.

In this video the tube system was in its beginning state. Now the tubes go to many tables.

Something else we loved was herbie,who was parked around the corner

Friday, 3 October 2014


Spring is really starting to shout. That means decorating the garden. My husband gets all the credit and I just add some finishing touches. Furthermore a time of flowers, sunshine, trips to the park and a recycled poem.

Spring arrives as the earth
awakens from a winter sleep
her  skin sparkling gleefully
the sun warps  kisses on her cheek

A blanket of soft green
stretches all around
covering our mother earth
seeds sprouting from the ground

A fragrance of passion
surrounds the new born land
cherry trees are showing
their sweet pink on demand

The wind whispers secrets
about a baby robin bird
The song from her mother
the finest ever heard


Hagley park is a feast at the moment

I found this cute rack on grabone and did something I always wanted to do; To put flowers
on a plate for decoration. The big flower was left from a bouquet I received at work.

Pretty Would love to do this with some roses this summer

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Dressing up your place on a budget

 I went on my weekly walk with my friend. This time we walked from Lyttelton to Cash bay.

Lyttelton is a pretty port town close to Christchurch. As the earthquakes epicentre was in Lyttelton every second building was severely damaged. The people in this town are very resilient and soon all sorts of improvised coffee shops appeared. Lyttelton always had a bohemian feeling to it which makes it so attractive. A pleasure I indulge in is drinking coffee at a cafe with atmosphere.

After our walk we had a stroll over the farmers market where I discovered some gorgeous coffee tables. Someone covered old tables with vintage postcards and I had to have one.

Top right is the little table I bought. It has a crib underneath for magazines. It is in the first little room we fixed up. We still have two rooms to go. Another great find recently was a cheap wooden crate. My husband had the idea of using it as a shelving unit on the wall in our kitchen. We also painted our sixty year old kitchen unit. My mum send me the half curtains as you can't buy these ones in NZ.
Furthermore after the earthquake my husband fixed up the bathroom, took out the bath and put a new shower in.

Now I know how much is involved in doing up your house, although my husband does most of the work. I have an enormous respect for my brother Pieter. He worked 10 years on an old house and changed it into a palace. In the last years he changed his garden into a wonderland.

 Here is a little glimpse in my brothers garden. In every corner you find some treasures. These photo's are a couple of years old so I can't wait to see it next year again.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Quotes with a sea breeze

Last Sunday instead of only walking along the beach we walked uphill in Sumner in Christchurch to enjoy the amazing views.

Imagine a light breeze in your hair, the sun warming your skin, hear the waves crushing into the shore, take in the view and contemplate the quotes.

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add colour to my sunset sky. Rabindranath Tagore.

Don't let the waves of others frown out your own ocean song. Hold your heart as though it was a seashell. And listen to it. Listen to its music. To the whispers of your ocean within. And than swim. Swim to your own ocean music. S.C. Lourie

If you run after things, nothing will come to you
Let things run after you
The sea never sends an invitation to the rivers.
That's why they run to the sea.
The sea is content.
It doesn't want anything.
That's the secret in life.
Swami Satchidananda

As the sea swallowed the sun once more, A tear fell from her eyes and dissolved in the sand beneath us "What is it, why the tears," I asked And with a smile that nearly leaped across the cheeks she answered:" Here comes the moon." I knew within that moment that it is, The most simple things that plant the most phenomenal truths inside us. Christopher Poindexter.

You can never cross the ocean unless you
have the courage to lose sight of the shore.
Christopher Columbus
I crave the ones who've seen confusion and know struggle ,who have pulled themselves up from the shackles of heartache and strife ,disappointment and darkness ,exhaustion and drain and have risen with a heart as open and unwaveringly wide as the ocean itself. Give me those people. The brave ,the vulnerable, the wise, the ones who cares for a world and how to better it along with themselves. To know their ability in making waves in shifting patterns with tides and in creating change. Let us become that open ocean....And make it rise . Victoria Erickson