Wednesday, November 30, 2011

And I thought it wouyld be easy!

You know what--- this is a dog's life. Oh yes, it was wonderful winning on Saturday night, but now that I have had a few days to try and get a cabinet and move on some critical areas, like building new 'State Kennels and free bone kitchens for Jack Russels--- well I am only trying to show my mates that I care after all. Isn't that what happens everywhere? I know one things for sure--- everybody wants something. The cats from both parties  want well-marked cat crossings on all major roads and the chickens want to keep 50% of all the eggs they raise. Thats all I need-- an explosion of chickens running wild.
Then there's Neil and his mates. I knew it. It wasn't long before he had a line-up, all pressuring me for equal rights for humans. Come on guys-- we won---you lost. Don't you get it? I think you should just be content that we have allowed to you to run your silly human-orientated businesses, almost without constraints. Hey--- it was you who stuffed up the environment--- not us!
The move to Mt Roskill is working out better than I thought. We don't need as much as what you lot had in Wellington. Take for example, all the techno stuff you had. Thats out the window. It's back to basics. God it sounds so damned good litenning to all of that howling. Just think od all the momney we are saving. That can go for the Older Pets and Animals Care Centres.
JUst a note of cuation though. I am hearing rumblings of discontent from certain quaters. Be warned--- we are watching and our new Minister for internal secuturity has assembled quite a team!
I'm enjoying 'Roskill, Neil's latest book.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Perdy Speaks

"Neil has asked me to talk to you about my latest moves in the political world. Ok--- I have been a busy lady-- what with the coaltion talks and trying to please everyone, but just pissing off most. First, I had to placate the Non-Pedigree Cats Party by offering them two cabinet places; Tourism and Education. They were none too please when I made neil Minister of Human affairs, but they will just have to get used to it. I mean what do they know about humans other than licking the hand that feeds them.
Jasmine is showing her ture colours. She used to be head honcho around here at home, but when we move to Wellington, she has said that she won't come. I have had a thought that maybe we can run things from here in MT Roskill. That will need a few chnages, or should I say--- we might have to run roughshod over a few political foes and friends alike.
I am going to ram through a new law about the lenght of Parliament--- lets face it,  us animals don't live as long as you humans so how about we change the term from 3 years to six months? Don't like it?--- too bad. I can feel the power rush.
 I bet that finds favour with the 'Free Chickens Party

Saturday, November 26, 2011

"The Morning After

Perdy is now Prime Minister. It was a close thing but it appears that she and her Party can rule with the help of the Non-Pedigree Cat's Party. Mmmm--- Time will tell. Going by the conversations I heard late last night, it may be a rough journey. She was trying to convince Jasmine ( Leader of the Cats party) that I should be Minister for Human Affairs. Jasmine was arguing that she had a better lead on that post and that only she could truly deliver in that area. God help us.
The phone calls went on all night. We even had the Chickens' Freedom Party visiting in the wee small hours. By then  I was jiggered. Luckilly Henabee didn't stay long. She walked out clucking somthing about not been able to trust 'canines.'
The call from the leader of the Governing Party (Former) didn't take the loss well. The polls had been so wrong and losing isn't something that dear Frabius takes well. Back to the farm yard for her party I say. As the only human in the Cabinet of the new Government, I'll have to watch my language. I didn't like the looks I was getting from the new Minister for Policing and Border Control. I suspect that any new human  immigrants will have a difficult time, when they apply to join us in  NZ.
If that wasn't enough, I saw a memo on Perdy's desk with plans for a new division of the Police Force. All I can say at this stage is that--- thank God, I'm close to Perdy. Humans are in for a pretty torid time, if they object to the proposed 'Selling of  Human Assets Bill.
Howeve,r all is not lost for us humans. We shall rebuild our party--- but we will need to keep it under the radar for a while. You may ask--- why are we in this situation? It's damn obvious to me. We had our chances, but we JUST DIDN'T GET OUT AND VOTE!  Need I say more?

Friday, November 25, 2011

Big day eh

It's E day and you need to get out and V. I can't say which party but make sure you keep the family jewels and the things that are God-given.
 I was speaking to Perdy last night and she assured me that things will be fine if we suppport the "Jack Russel Party. She was on the phone last night to the leader of the Freedom for Chickens Party---something about a coaltion with the 'Non Pedigree Cat's Party. Apparently they have split from the Rich Cats from the Central Party--- they just couldn't see paw to paw. Just when I thought she might pay me some attention, like going for a late walk, she started talking to that evergreen politician, Twinson Ceepers. You should have heard them--- I mean, I could hear it from the couch. Twinson was reminding Perdy about the extension he had achieved for the Critters Card--- you know the one that allows free vet care and travel. God, since Perdy's Nana got hers, we hardly ever find her at home; always tripping around. Perdy's a bit pissed, cause she has to wait for years until she can collect hers. She's not at all too pleased with the United Animals Party--- and their idea of staggered access to the Retirement for Animals Fund. The farm dogs are demanding that this apply to them, because they reckon they work harder. Well, Perdy reckons the way she runs about to please me, she deserves at least as much. Not being one who gets too involved, I just watch them all--- night after night on TV, barking, bearing their teeth and promising the world. Oh well, I supppose my loyalty to Perdy means I better vote for her and just hope she teams up with the ones who will look after our clean green doggie parks. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Are they all a pack of liars? UPDATES

Who--- our politicians of course! It is easy to dismiss them as such but maybe a bit of balance is needed when pondering that question. Firstly, lets consider the alternative; something like a benevolent dictatorship, maybe with a royal tinge. Of course that only works (on the surface and relies on the citizens to forget any deisre to question) if the country has billions of gallons of oil and is able to vertualy bribe it's populace into satsified submission.
We in NZ don't have that luxury (the money that is) so we  go along with democarcy and all that entails. So who do we want to lead, inspire and spend our money? Do our politicians really go into their chosen careers with completely unselfish thoughts? Maybe they have what they truely believe is a zeal that they can 'fix' all our problems, but don't you think they have just bit of a need to feel the power that goes with it. Some of them have already experienced that feeling in their past working lives and are just transfering that 'lust' to a new field of play.
So what have we got. If you were able to listen to them, without knowing their political allegiances and they were able to answer our questions, without having to go along with party policies, I wonder how they would stack up. I suspect that we would hear a jumble of ideas, bereft of any substance. I guess thast's why parties formed, to bring like-minded souls intio line in order to achieve a 'plan'---- that's 'good for us.' That leaves the question--- how do we decide who we want to choose to represent us and our thoughts on what we think is 'good for us?' All very confusing. Just listen to the crap that people put forward as their reason for backing a particular party. I won't quote them here, but I am sure you know what I mean--- it's just that I won't throw up at the same things you do!
What am I going to do then, come election day? I could go with the party that I think has traditionally been the best for 'health and  education' or I could get really selfish and vote for the party that gave us the 'Gold Card' or look at the bigger question of 'Global Warming' and tick the box that matches those lofty ideals. I know I won't be backing a party whose members don't give a stuff about the growing gap between rich and poor--- you know--- they think that,'if I could get rich, then so can you'--- sort of like one of the upper echelons of one of our religious 'sects.'
Come election day, I shall cast my votes and watch the people we elect do thier thing on our behalf for the next three years--- that is if they last that long.
Go to NEW WEBSITE IN MAY 2012  or just email me at and get a really good price.

Just wondering how you are all feeling. John is still way up there in the polls.MMM maybe all the striking workers, asset sales opponents and other victims of the 'cuts' will be wondering what is next on the list. The ccycle will continue and eventually the worm will turn, just lke it does no matter who is in governmnet. It's like we have this ingrained resposne to any political party who has been in too long. For National, thier shelf-life is a bit longer. Not sure why-- so maybe I shall play with that idea in a future blog.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Cosy Cafeteria--- Onehunga

I have always enjoyed breakfasting in Onehunga. I like the mix of the old-fashion and the trendy; something to suit everyone. From time ot time, new cafes open, adding to the already generous mix, especially if you add the ones in the Dressmart complex. Well there's a new boy on the block. I had heard from my mates (my dog-walking group) that a new one had openned in the restaurant that was 'Claret,' down the bottom end of the main street, near the railway station, almost opposite Columbus. I was also told that 'The Cosy Cafeteria' represents really good value.
On Sunday morning I decided to take my sister there, after my usual morning walk with Perdy. I did'nt take Perdy, but there are outside tables and if the morning isn't cold (it's not on the sunny side of the street), she would have been welcome.
I dropped a pissed-off Perdy home--- you know the look she gives me; somewhere between crying and 'I'm gonna bite you,' look. We headed on down and parked almost right outside the cafe. After been greated by a very friendly, bubbly young lady, we were handed the menu. The first thing that grabbed us was the price. The prices are at least a good several dollars lower than the competion. 'Right,' I thought, 'They're gonna have to sacrifice somewhere.'
I ordered the 'Big Breakfast,' hoping that my doctor doesn't read my blog. My sister asked about Gluten free toast and was told----'yes they had it.'
While we were waiting in what can best be described as a slightly Retro look decore, we noticed a steady flow of people coming in.
The coffee arrived and it was as good as anything else I have had in the main street.
Along came my 'Big Breakfast,' truely living up to its name---hell--- It was like a gastromonic Noah's Ark-- two of everything, all adding up to a 'no lunch for me today,' look. I thought compromise would follow--- it didn't. None of that crapppy bacon you can get when you don't pay so much. You did fine young people. Yes, the cafe seemed to be run by hard-working friendly, helpful youngsters, who take a pride in their work; not just the food, but the service as well.
I'm not saying that I won't be going to the other cafes: The Library, Columbus, just to mention a few, but I am saying that I will be going back to The Cosy Cafeteria. Don't let me hear that young people don't want to work--- give them a chance and let them shine.  Good on you Onehunga and go for it The Cosy Cafeteria.

OH--- I didn't get a freeby, in case you'e wondering!




2) THE DIJATC (Damn--- it's just around the corner)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The battle of the--- well WHAT?

Wasn't the great debate a bit of a waste of time? Did it tell you anything you didn't already know? Did it inform you about policy or provide real vision--- I don't think so. Phil managed to make John look like a naughty school boy, but he did it too much. The 'John you're---or John, that's not'--- was too much.
John tried to be slick and that didn't work.
Lets face it--- the vast majority of us have made up our minds already about who we are going to vote for. It is going to be just like it always has been--- about 10% of us who are swinging voters who will decide the result.
Then there's the question of the referendum. Do you really think people understand the options? Can you imagine Nzers coping with some of them--- where they have to rank the candidates and then the transfering thing happens. I reckon we will get 'donkey' voting--- if the cnadidate's name starts with 'A' they get more votes. Am I being too harsh? Have I misunderstood my fellow citizens? Maybe I'm just in a cynical mood. Maybe I shall let Perdy deicde who I should vote for. I shall put all the parties names on the floor and smother them with different smelly food and the one she eats first will be my choice. Well that probably has more rationality in it than how some poeple decide. LOL
Don't worry--- people who reallly know me, trust that I will do better than that--- I'll probably beat Perdy to it and eat the stuff first. --- Jack Russels rule!

Friday, October 21, 2011

She bit me!

It's true--- Perdy had a hissy-fit today. OK--- Shall I begin at the ---yes--- beginning. I took Perdy down to the bay this morning, feeling quite good. (I hadn't seen the stupid typos that got through in my book at that time--- but that's another story that will have been well resolved by the time I tell it)
Perdy is really intellignet and she has this habit of trying every trick in the book to avoid coming to me and getting in the car, when it is time to go. In her mind, she decides when to go home, not me. I think of different ways to entice, trick, cajole---you name it, but it simply doesnt work--twice. Yes the first time i try something different, it works, but after tha, well chuck the idea away. She banks her new knowledge and turns it on me. I am sometimes left letting her have at least another ten minutes before she decides to come to me, tail innocently wagging, saying--- `OK, I'm ready to leave now.'
Well, today she met her macth. When it was time to go, I threw her favourite ball to her and let her have a few minutes run, chasing and almost bringing the ball back--- it's never a complete process. I mean, she hates to lose control. She does her best to ignore my requests to leave. I deicde to play her game. I give her the old silent treatment that worked so well from my Mum's point of view, when I was a kid. Did it work--- well yes it did--- sort of.
I turned my face and pretended to ignore her. I could see in my side-vision (I know-- I can't spell that other word) her little face, turniong in that endearing way, when she's trying to figure out what I am doing. I continued to ignore her. She began to bark in that semi-silent manner--- sort of between a whimper and a bark. That turned into a full blown pleading bark. I still ignored her. Finallly, she got really pissed at me and suantered over to me and sat before me looking up at me. 'Got ya,' I thought. Not quite. She decided to bnite me--- not hard--- just a nip, but it gave me the opportunity to grab her and stick her on her leash, prior to bundeling her into the car. I WON.  But what will she do tomorrow? She knows that trick now!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Use your local library

Hi Everyone. This is me in my cheeky mode. Lots of people want to read 'Roskill', but don't want to put up $48 (NZ). I don't blame them. There is another way. Just go to your local library and request it (or do it online). You just need the title, author and ISBN number.
'Roskill' by Neil Coleman. ISBN 978-1-877572-53-1   Thanks and good luck.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

'It's all about the ball.'

So you're wondering what I meant by 'and who rescued her(Perdy)?

Picture this--- One of my lovely friends brought a 'dental ball,' thinking that it would not only be good for Perdy, but it would help divert her attention when she does that jumping at the necks of other dogs when she is playing. It doesn't matter how big they are--- the bigger the better, as far as she is concerned, but I do get worried that one day she will meet her match and then, size does really matter.

The ball is a lime green and it bounces beautifully. Perdy loves to carry it and mouth it. I know she's a girl and that she should be able to multi-task, but she still jumps up at other dogs, whilst carrying the precious ball. Of course her bites are then quite ineffective as her mouth is otherwise engaged.

There is a problem when the tide is in. When we are over at the motorway side of the bay, Perdy sometimes drops the ball and it drops into the water. If the tide is out--- no problem. She just jumps into the mud and grabs her ball and crawls out. If however the tide is in, that is not quite so easy.

Yes--- you got it--- the ball rolls into the wtaer and bobs up and down as Perdy contemplates her rescue action. 'What the hell I thought-- just chuck her in. I did and she swam around, along with Patch (another friend's Boxer). They think it's a game, but after a few seconds, Perdy decides it is time to get out, minus the ball, which continued to bob it's merry way out into the bay, driven by the wind.

Oops---- Perdy can't quite get a grip on the bank and is reallly struggling to get out. I could have dropped over the side and pulled her out, but I didn't fancy getting wet and muddy. Just as I was concidering that yucky option, Patch leans over and grabs Perdy by the scruff of her neck and pulls her onto the bank. What a little hero. I have never seen a dog rescue another dog--- just beautiful. My reaction?--- well I shall buy her owner breakfast on Sunday morning--- no doubt one that she will share with her clever dog.


WE waited for an hour and the wind eventuallly drove the ball to the end of the bay, where yet another dog (Piper) ran in to the water at his Mum's request and brought the ball back to us and none of us had to get our feet wet. I have decided that the ball now has  a history, making it a very special ball--- one that will not be given to Perdy when she is on the 'other side' of the bay at high tide.

Friday, October 14, 2011

To Be Continued---well, continued

Perdy and I finished our walk on the 'big hill" and decided to go home. OK--- it was my decision-- not shared decision making in my house. Of course you wouldn't think so if you were a secret 'watcher', somehow ensconsed in the walls-lol. Why don't I just admit it?--- what Perdy (and Jasmine) want, Perdy gets.

Remember--- I was going to lunch with a friend at the food hall in Mason Ave, Otahuhu. Try it sometime---unpretentious great food. That all went well and so did the 'nana nap' I had when I got home. Yes, I took Perdy for another walk in the afternoon. You'd think that maybe I am looking slim and fit. Sorry to disappoint you--- Yes I am losing a bit of weight---slowly, like a good red wine maturing in the barrel (no pun intended) but naturally  I have to sample the barrel every so often.

That night, I cooked a curry--using a Japanese curry mix in the form of a slab, much like chocalate comes. Don't do it. It makes a mockery of good Japanese food. I bet Japanese housewives don't use it. It's full of MSG, and chemicals with numbers---- when you see that you gotta know its crap. I say all this in the interest of good international relations. I hope we don't export stuff like that. Stay with good, natural and healthier Japanese options. I am not even letting Perdy eat the chicken.

Doesn't time fly? Of course it does when I am writing, God-like, before my new computer. I can bend time, manipulate it to suit myself and my stories. Another day has passed and after a wonderful day down at the 'Fan Zone' I am once again with Perdy at the 'bay.' Man--- I walked so much today--- what, with the early morning walk already done and then wandering along the waterfront, before enjoying lunch at an establishment, normally well beyond my budget, I reckon if I had a 'Perdydometre' (Don't say it--- another bad pun) I would have ramped up a huge total, and I had the afternoon walk to come.

I'm gonna make you wait (if anyone actuallly reads this, that is) another day to tell you how Perdy needed to be rescued, AND BY YOU'D NEVER GUESS who by!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

I love my job ----but

Yes, I love my job, but on days like this, when I can take my time about facing the day, choose whatever I want to do, with whom ever I want to be with (as long as they invite Perdy of course) and go where ever I wish.

I slept in a little (until seven) and had my breakfast (fried eggs on my homemade bread----I don't think my doctor reads this!, but hey what comes next alleviates that a little) and then consulted Perdy about where she would like to go.

'Grrrr--- anywhere--- just get me out of here,' she barked, looking menacingly at the couch. Mmmm--- I am not getting the new one until I know she has outgrown the tendency to embark on 'chewable art.'

As soon as we started driving, she set up her whining and barking. I think she is saying---'Hurry up--- can't you drive faster--- you know I havn't had my morning pooo yet,' but after a change in dierection, away from the beach we usually go to, she settled and watched the changing view. I drove to the Three Kings Reserve, only to find that the car park was out of action. No worries, we just parked along the road a bit. Perdy did her usual pulling, making it hard ot release the tie from the saftey belt. She pulled me along into the park and once past the main entrance I released her and watched her fly up the path to sniff at some unknown dog's privates. Thank God humans don't do that! The owner of the other dog (I think it was an SPCA special, full of love and unkown potential). Perdy's not a snob and  it only took a few seconds for the two to run off, leaving me to to talk to the owner. I have found that the huge majority of dog owners are more than happy to chat: indeed I have made some wonderful new friends in the last six months, because of Perdy.

I decided that I would take the full circuit of the mountain. I had been saying for several weeks that I needed to add some hill-work into my usual walks. A few minutes later, I knew I wasn't fit, but was determined not to give up. However, I also deicided that I wouln't go to the top. That could wait until tomorrow. Once step at a time with getting fitter eh. My approach has to be better than sttiing on my proverbial --- like--- anything is better than  that.

 The view across to the other mountains was lovely, for an urban view that is. The working quary provided a contrasting view with background stage noise. Damn--- why did they have tlo open up such a huge ugly hole? What stupid council ever gave permission for that? Oh well, at least the other two mounts are still there, even if one of them has been taken over by housing.

Perdy didn't give a stuff about all that. She was far more interested in stealing another dog's ball, and then running off as if to say--'come on--- chase me.' Now you know why I always have a spare ball in the car to swap for the balls she steals and loses. luckilly, I had remmbered to bring her special ball to encourage her to give up the stolen trophy. All was well as she mouthed the slimy green ball.

(To be continued--- why?    I want to go to lunch with a friend---LOl)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Roskill has finally gone to print. It will be available in about three weeks either from my publisher direct (access thorugh my website  (especiallly for orders of five or more---discount applies). If you are in NZ get them from me
A STORY OF OUR TIMES. When the Campton family arrives from Christchurch after the dad is made redundant, things don't quite go as planned. John  (Dad) gets involved in the world of 'P' and gradually pulls away form his family. His two chidren find solace in different ways; the chatrooms on the internet and violent world of street gangs. Moana (Mum) seeks out the support of her estranged Auckland family and friends and comes up with a plan that borders on the illegal, but in desparate times, we often search for dnagerous solutions.
Roskill is a book for teenagers and parents who want to know what the affects of thier own actions have on thier children.
'Roskill' has been endorsed by Ron Phillips, author of 'Gem of the First Waters,' a therepeutic book used in group work for teenagers in NZ and in many countries.

Order through website  or from me
         NZ$38 plus postage

Monday, October 10, 2011

Will the world end?

I never thought that I would ever write a blog about rugby. Yes, I listen to all the conversations in the staff room and various other settings, Yes, I make comments(no doubt pretty unimoformed) and soak up the atmosphere. I have seen those who are just 'over it all' perking up a bit as we get to the hard end of the 'Cup.'
Of course there is all the talk about NZ 'choking' again. God, that makes me mad. Talk about willing something to happen. Is it that we lack that 'killer instinct' our Aussie cousins seem to possess? Is that the difference between our two nations? Maybe it's the generally tougher envirnonment that has made us differ in our response to a challenge?
Of course there are many examples of how we don't give up. Take the Americas Cup campaign and maybe the soccer team and the Breakers. They are fine examples of what can happen when we dig deep.
When it comes to rubgy, we seem to flag a little. I suggest that rugby is so close to the core of out national psyche, that we feel too deeply. I hear commentators talking about how the result could even affect the election--- hell what a stupid basis to decide who misgoverns us. Then I hear on TV today about how so many NZers are betting for Australia to win. OK--- just chuck it away my friends.
Now---- get a little balance. Life goes on despite the game and all the hype that surrounds it. That's my balanced side talking, but that little devil sitting on my shoulder is saying---'yeah right---  you're just like the rest of us--- lose and life sucks.'
Come on everyone--- get out there to the Fan Zones and soak it all up. The sun will rise again, after the final whistle and we have a wonderful country--- win or lose.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Roskill is coming

What happens when a father enters the world of `P'? Does his family just accept it or do they find their own solutions? What does James do, the son? His sister, Lucy finds solace in the chatrooms. What are your teenagers doing now? Perhaps your partner is like John. We all have choices, but what would you do?

Order your copy and watch out for media releases. Ask your local library if they have a copy?   new website
ROSKILL----COMING MID-OCTOBER  Price NZ$38 plus postage


Saturday, October 1, 2011


ROSKILL has finally gone to print and I shall recieve my first copies in mid-October.

ROSKILL is a story of our times. When the Campton family arrives from Christchurch to begin a new life in Mt Roskill, things don't go to plan. John (Dad) quickly becomes enmeshed in the world of 'P' and his family falls apart. His teenage children find solace in chatrooms and street gangs. Moana (Mum) seeks the help of her estranged family in Papatoetoe and comes up with a plan that borders on the illegal.

ROSKILL can be purchased direct from me, via my e-mail address. If you want multiple copies (at a discount) go to my website and purchase through my publisher  and follow the link.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Mmmm--- is she checking out a site for me?

Is she really checking out a site for me?  Nah--- I was down at the Onehunga Cemetry
 with the ladies and all the dogs--- it's really interesting seeing all the old graves-- way back at the begiining of European settlemnet of Old Onehunga. The dogs behaved themselves; not drawing too many dissaproving looks from other people visiting. I know some people don't like pets in such places, but its such an open park-like place, bordering the harbour, that I think it's fine. Oops-- my sistser has arrived so I better go and cook.
 Weird posting--- I know

Friday, August 5, 2011

Easy Rider

I love to take Perdy for her walk everyday and she lets me know big time, when that time is near. I was a bit late today, so she made sure that I was aware of her presence--- all the way to the bay--I think she may have reached about 70 decibels with her manic barking.
We arrived slightly later than ususal but the others were waiting. Perdy jumped out the car window and took off around the lagoon to meet her mates.
When we arrived back at the car park, we were met with a funny sight. Check it out. Gee--- I wonder if I could get Perdy to ride on the roof of my car; complete with hat and 'doggles.' Yes, that is a motor bike. The dog seemed quite happy, despite the cold day. Cute eh?

Butt shot

Every so often I like to go and see my brother, Lyndsay in hamilton. Janice comes too,  and we like to enjoy a nice meal and a bottle of wine. We started off and stoped at Te Kauwhata and that  cafe in the main street. It has become a bit of a tradition; we alternate between the cafe (I think it's called City) and the herb gardens, when it's open in the Summer.
Everything was going to plan and we arrived on time at eleven. Lyndsay made us welcome as usual. The plan this time was to try out Janice's new pressure cooker. We had brought a bolar roast to test out in the cooker; supplemented of course by a Vila Maria premium wine. Nothing but the best for these ocassions.
I burnt the cabbage because the stove rings work sort of back to front-- age catching up there I think-- the stoves, not mine. Thank God for frozen veggies. I browned the roast in oil along with onions. The smell was devine. Once browned I added a cup and a half of vegetable stock and closed the lid. In the meantime, I cooked pototoe, carrot and parsnip chips in the oven. It's real simple, just cut, add some oil, salt and pepper and dried herbs and cook at 220c for 25 minutes.
I was enjoying a glass of wine while I watched the pressure cooker when all of a sudden I felt this sting. Shit--- had I been bitten by a white-tailed spider? I have never seen them at Lyndsya's place. Wham another one--- God was the place infested? NO--- I was been attacked by something qujite differnet. Take a look at the picture. I'll get the bugger back. Next time I go down there--- it's war!
By the way--- the roast bolar was magnificent; tender, juicey with a majic gravy. 9Not Magi).

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My next book--ROSKILL and others to come

 NOW for the waiting time. ROSKILL is almost here. I have just recieved  my advance copy to check and get my editior to go over it as I have learnt the hard way, that I just do not see all the errors. I am so happy with the cover design again. It also suggests a teenage audience, although many adults will find the story challenging. Afterall---'the drug 'P' is almost endemic in our society. Maybe my story is a little melodramatic, but life can be like that too.
ROSKILL will be available, hopefully by the end of August or early September at the latest. Hehehe--- perhaps I will buy one for my birthday. Mmmmm--- I wonder if I can get the launch date for the September the 4th.
Other news. I have sent  SONS OF ORPHEUS to a publisher. I am preparing myself for the rejections that accompany the real world once you leave the world of self-publishing.
I am a devil for punishment. At the moment I am working on yet another novel---TALK TO ME. It is a satirical look at the world of talkback radio where I am the host. Funny, sad, chilling and totallly cynical. Watch this space.


The new Roskill with new coveer and ISBN is now out   go to

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Winterless North-- yeah right

No--- I'm not being rude. It's not so much that I feel cold. I suspect that the terrible weather is like this all over NZ. I am now safely wrapped up in my hotel for the remainder of the day. It's still pissing down outside; infact when I took a short drive towards the Whangarei Heads, I had to turn back, because there was just too much water on the roads.
I am at the NZAC (New Zealand Association of Counsellors) conference. Today was inspirational. John Winslade and his parter Lorraine did a dual presentation of how they see counselling since the late 1800's. It is not often that you hear something that so wonderfully puts into perspective, the socio/political/historical interplay of where counselling has come from. I had so many 'yes' moments. Thanks so much John and Lorraine. I don't think I have to say anything more.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Looking back on this now--- well

So how do I avoid getting tumbled by rampaging dogs? Mmmm-- not sure. I know that I will not stop walking because I think I am additced and that's one addicition that's OK with me--- and my doctor. My mates say that I bribed the dogs to knock me over so that I could get time off work--- don't think so cause the holidays are coming up anyway. I went to the doctor and have started physio---sprained ankle and ligament in right knee. One session has me straightenned me out (don't laugh) and another one on Monday. I can still go to the NZAC conference next week, so all is looking up. I shall revisit the beach and let Perdy go for a run, with me watching. I don't want to get knocked over when the other dogs see me--- they are only being dogs after all.
I have started another book (my editior says that being prolific is good because then I have heaps I can cut). You may have gathered I am never lost for words LOL. Here's a synopsis so far.
 In the story TALK TO ME, I am a radio talkback host. I also walk Perdy at the park--- yes she and my lady freinds are in the story but with much changed names and characters--- shit--- I don't want to be sued. Let's say--- they have inspired my story. It is a send up-- satirical you might say. Well--- one of the ladies ( I have called her Marge) finds a body whislt on a walk. It hits the news and a guy rings into the radio show I host and tells me it is him. From there the story gets  more weird on every page. It has twists and turns and lots of surprises. I will try to get it published rather than go down the self published road--- too expensive. I will just have to get used to alll the refusals eh.


Yeah, things change and the water doesnt go 'flow' under the bridge----it tumbles and eddies and at times is a bloody whirlpool. One learns and looks back, alost embarassed at the naivity. I look at mylsef and think-'damn---I know nothing---it's not like abook that you're reading aut somone esle---it's for bloody real and there are no easy breaks.'
My decision to do my own thing could be yet another big financial flush pool, but if I don't do it, I will never know. Youn know those films where  the 'about to be departed are sitting looking out some window over a ramshackle garden, where the flowers have stopped blooming and the weeds are taking hold. I don't want ot be like that.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Last week one of the ladies who regulalry walks with us had an accident. Sometimes as many as ten dogs join us on ojur hijinks around the bay. That must look both funny and intimidating to anyone trying to share the pathways.
The dogs (especially the younger ones) love to rush about chasing each other and causing mayhem. The inevitable happened and two of the more boisterous ones collided with one of the ladies and caused her bad lower leg and general injuries. She's all wrapped up in bandages of some sort and wont be right for mnay weeks. I felt really sorry for her and I know that she loves ot get her doggie out dfor the walks. She appeared back at the park yesterday and I was wandering across to see her while she sat on a big rock. Finn, Pacth and Perdy were running around like silly buggers, always happy to see oneanother. Two bad that I got in the way of their games.
Bang, crash and Oh bugger!  My turn. I felt myslef falling and imgaes of my mate's fate, crowded my head. Ifell on the sand, at a crazy angle. First-- 'I'm OK,' I thought, but then, 'Oh No.' I thought I had stuffed up my ankle, but there was a niggling pain in my knee. I managed to get myself, with help from two of my freinds to a rock, facing my already injured mate on the other rock in the distance. It felt most unnatural. I had the feeling that---'damn--- I'm not a srping chicken any more and all those things they say about 'falling' when you get a bit older and odder are true--- we don't bounce back like we used to. One friend went to her car and came back with Arnnica. I decided to rest while the others took all the dogs for the walk around the bay. The injured mate sat with me, but her dog soon returned; unwilling to leave her mistress. Perdy  wouldnt even contemplate leaving me--- so loyal and unexpected.
When the others copmpleted a circuit I said goodbye and hopped to my car. I went to the nearby medical centre, but in the end just got some pain killers. After a restless night and waking to realize that it's the knee that's causing the main problem. So today, it's off to the doctor and possible xrays.
On a finishing note. I love my friends. They were concerned and so helpful. One even texted me this morning, offering to pick up Perdy for a walk. Hopefully my visits to the bay will be back on soon, depending on what the doctor says later .

Thursday, June 30, 2011

What you doing Jasmine?

Jasmine, Jasmine--- Where for out thou Jasmine--- To be or not to be, that is the question--- but if you think you can hide from me, then you are indeed a silly pussy. Do you really think you are the boss around here? I try to play with you, yet you ignore me. One day Queen Jasmine, there will be a palace revolution. Then---- we shall restore the natural balance.

Is that right my silly Perdy. Do you really think that this glass separating us is going to protect you from my wrath. Just accpet that I am indeed Queen and you are  but a lowly subject. Don't forget, I do know where the Cat door is--- yes cat door, not Perdy door. Got it mutt?'

Friday, May 27, 2011

how Could she?

Well I finally worked out how to get a picture of Perdy on here. When I was walking the other day with all of my lovely ladies and their dogs, we noticed Perdy shiffing around in a flaxbush. Next minute, she came running out with her trophy, closely followed by her firns, Finn and Stella. There was no way that Perdy was going to give up the fish, even though its almost as big as her. In the end I caught her and relived her of the smelly prize. What a watse eh. If it was fresh, it would have been a good meal.
Perdy continues to make me walk her everyday (twice a day in the weekend) and the weight is cooming off. She's my little doctor as well as friend.

Only a jack Russell

I tried to upload a picture today. It won't work. Maybe it was i used an image from my cellphone. I thought I had it sussed. I took this wonderful picture on my cellphone, then snet it to my e-mail. It arived OK but when it came to uploading it on her, well it just won't work, Damn.
Oh well-- I will just have to describe it then.
I was out on my usual walk after work with the lovley ladies (can't call Perdy a lady yet-- she's just turned one) and all of a sudden Perdy appeared from behind some flax bushes (are they bushes? mmm. She then proceded to run past her friends, Finn and Stella (great names for dogs eh?). They immedialtly

Monday, May 2, 2011

Bless our smallness

Yeah, I know--- the title just doesn't make sense. I was looking at one of the blogs I follow (Josie goes on the Road). Her pictues are so cool--- she really captures the moment, with a huge range of subjects. I hope she makes money from her pictures.
All of a sudden, the news came on and there was this damned tornado ripping through the North Shore suburbs. I know one person died and others were injured. It reminded me of the past few months; firstly the Pike River mine disaster with the 29 deaths, then the horrible earthqauke in Chrsitchurch. For us in NZ, it was massive.
Still----I'd rather be here than face the gigantic tornadoes that the USA is getting, or the Tsunami in Japan.
I think I will go back and look at Josie's pictures and get a bit of balance.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Coastal Yarns-- walking friends

My Mum used to say---'join something. It's a way of making friends.'
I guess she had in mind some sort of club or church group---it's hard to say. She didn't distinguish between the formal and informal.
I know one thing for sure; taking that little bundle of trouble-seeking fur for a walk every day has certainly expanded my circle of friends.

If I miss a day now, I feel I am missing something. Well, I know that I am lessening the chance of an evening of attacks from Perdy-----demands to play, chewing the impossible, and those acusing looks. If she hasn't had a walk, she takes it out on the furniture the next day. We have given up on the idea of buying a new lounge suite, until she has eaten the one we have provided---sort of like, 'if you don't eat your vegetables, you don't get your desert.' Mmmmm----who's the boss around here?

So you can see why I like to take her to the Onehunga Lagoon (I think that's what they call it). During the weekend, Perdy gets to go there several times, but after work we have this lovely group of ladies meeting usw, along with their dogs, sometimes even with their famillie's dogs. Perdy has become friends with them. This reminds me of how Mum used to say that she made many friends through the parents of the kids at my younger brother's Kindergarten, way back in the 60's.

It was these ladies who first encouraged me to let Perdy go. Believe me, that was really hard for me, after hearing poeople say that you don't readilly do that with Jack Russell puppies.I shall nver foregt that day when I slipped her free. She took off after the other dogs, lookd around with a glint in her eyes, tail wagging as she introduced herself to other dogs. My heart was in my mouth a few times when she approached rather large dogs, sniffed (in all possible places) and then implored them to play. Most did and to my horror, Perdy took on the personality of a huge dog; fearless to the point that I wanted to capture her and keep her on her leash.

I learnt that she is a pretty good judge of the wicked and dangerous. Quite franklly, the park seems to be predominantly visited by dogs and owners who have nice pets. Sometimes she pushes boundaries and uses techniques that bring about sharp reprimands, but so far has avoided anything other than a growl or snap. There are a few dogs that take delight in sitting on her, but even that fails to quell her enthusiasm to test new friends.

The friendship with some of the ladies has extended to them supporting me at my reading last Friday at the Onehunga Library, to suppport the appeal for Christchurch. We have also had an evening at the park with nibbles and drinks.

If you see us down there, say Hi--- we won't bite, but you may get licked------ not by me of course.

Coastal Yarns: Perdy----crazy girl

Coastal Yarns: Perdy----crazy girl: "I know I go on about Perdy alot. You have to forgive me, but as a new doggie owner, its a real buzz. It does go along with a whole lot of ne..."

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Perdy----crazy girl

I know I go on about Perdy alot. You have to forgive me, but as a new doggie owner, its a real buzz. It does go along with a whole lot of new tasks. For example, if I dont take her out every day, she has her own special way of showing me her disapproval.
  At first, it's the acusing look; not  that cute puppy tilting of the head that is so endearing. Its the forlorn, 'left at home all day alone look, or the 'you dont really love me' look. Either way, it makes me feel like crap; bringing up all sorts of feelings. Maybe Jack Russells and their cousins have evolved that look  over many years.
   OK---- so I come home from work, wondering how Perdy has spent her day. Mmmm--- outside seems normal enough. Actualy, there  isn't any sign of her. Maybe she's asleep on the sofa. I open the front door and I am met with a lounge that looks like a snow storm has hit it. I swear that there is a six inch layer of white fluufy stuff, strewn all around the small lounge. Now I think I know what film studios use for make believe snow. Where's Perdy?
   Oh--- she in her pen. She must have jumped over the fence on hearing me approach. But does she have a look of contrition on her face. Oh no. She looks smug, as if to say---- 'look Daddy--- I've redesigned the lounge. It was so boring and anyway, you left me alone all day and I got so bored.'
   Now I get the tilting head and big eyes. I reckon you could put eyelashes on her already lovely face and she'd look even prettier.
What am to do--- shout at her? Tell her off? I am told that unless I actaully catch her in the act, then telling her off is a waste of time. I guess you have all seen those videos of what dogs get up to when their parents are away. I would dearly love to have that facility here.
   I give her the 'silent treatment.' What another waste of time. It lasts exactly one and a half minutes. I can not ignore her waggng tail and pleading eyes.
'OK girl--- in the car--- lets hop it down to the  Onehunga beach to meet our new friends. Yes I have met some lovely people there. I dont feel my day is full, if I dont get to walk and watch the dogs playing.
 Perdy 100------- me Nil

Thursday, February 10, 2011


I  have been back at work a week--- things are going fine, but I really look forward to me time with Perdy after work. I rush home and let her out and she now jumps in the car without a lead---- mmmm progress. She doesn't run up the drive; choosing instead to get in the car so that she can get to the beach at Onehunga quickly. One she smells the water in the little bay (lagoon) she starts panting with excitement. Once I have parked, I observe which doggies are there. There are a couple of dogs who for some reason seem to really go for her. They are big bullies--- about five times her size---- is it cause she is little or somehow gets them going. The vast majority of the dogs just love her, particularly the Retrievers and Labradors.
 Its so funny---I let her off once i know that the good dogs are there, and she bounces along, chasing the seagulls away as she goes and rushes up to the owner of her friends wagging tail and happy sounds predominating. By the time a catch up she is well into dogie heaven. What a site. Sometimes there are about six owners and nine dogs--- yes they come in couples or more for some owners. They play, chase and jump in the water.
  Perdy has only been swimming for a few weeks. She seems to love going in with a pair of lovely Labradors. She swims quite a way out---- what a sight--- her little head bobbing up and down, whilst always checking to see where I am. She can be over a hundred metres away form me but when I call--- she turns and comes back. That was one of my major fears with Jack Russels-- they really do have this stubborn streak that is not always conducive to obeying instructions. She really has put my mind to rest on that issue.
 Mind you, she did have her moment the other day when this big mean Boxer decided to chase her. Perdy took off--- for a while i thought she was heading for the car park and nearby road, but she swung around and ran way out onto the grass area. The owner finally caught her dog, while my new friends helped me to encourage Perdy to come back. One lady suggested |I open the car door and call her---- sure enough, Perdy came running back and jumped in. Great.
 I have to mention what one of the naughty boy dogs did. The kids form Onehunga High were down there, practising their Waka Ama. They are great-- its so good to see kids happy and doing something other than walking the streets etc. They had packed all their gear under a tree. Well--- you can guess what happened. Yip--- you are correct. The naughty dog decided that their bags were just the thing to take a leak on.  MMM I'm so glad Perdy's a girl. She has far better manners.

Have a good weekend everyone.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Damn--- I was trying to load the article that appeared in the Central  Leader in December and it was rejected. OK --- if you want to view it-- then just google Neil Coleman author-- coastal yarns at Stuff and it should come up. OMG the picture. I was doing my best to look at the beautiful Pohutukawa in the distant. Its fun being a "model"at my age.

Well-- back to the real world of work tomorrow.  Yea-- the book is selling a bit now online. I better get on with the next one and get it edited--- less mistakes that way.

 Night everyone.

MY WEBSITE IS DOWN PENDING MY RELAUNCH--- USE neilcolemanauthor@gmail if you wish to order books


Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Mmmm-- I was going to post something everyday but that didn't quite work out.That's OK--- things happen eh.
Well its time to go back to work and regain the capacity to arise and face the world at 5.30 each day. Sleeping in until sevenish has been wonderful. I know I only have two people regularly reading this-- but that's cool--- they are both wonderful to talk to and understand where I am coming from. Selling one of my books was a lovely bonus but the real pleasure is in communicating with  them both.

I am getting close to sending my neck book (ROSKIL) for editing. I am going to be more careful this time to make sure that there are less errors. That cost money, but hopefully it will be worth it in the long run. My last book has only sold 100, but it is still early days in the world of writing.

I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs that I would put up some recipes. Well for all of you lovely Gluten -free people and possibly those who like low GI stuff,  here here is my wonderful almost healthy recipe for an upside-down crunch. I boil up some rhubarb (yes I grow my own) and maybe some apple to cut the tartness. Add sugar if you have to or use Sitivia). Let it cool  while you mix up the base (what normally would have been the top).
I use a mixture of seeds---sesame, sunflower,  flax seed and pumpkin. Add some almonds to if you wish. You can add gluten-free baking mix if you want (or flower for those who want a non-gluten free product). Add as much butter as you want and make it squish between your fingers and press  into the base of a baking dish. Nothing is precise about most of the things I make so use your imagination. Oh yes-- the  crumble is nice with heaps of powdered ginger or cCinnamon too. So once the crumble is pressed, just add the topping and bake at about 180-200c until the top looks like its almost caramelized.
 See ya

Monday, January 10, 2011

Coastal Yarns-- where it all began

I'm sitting in the same bach where Coastal Yarns began last year. Ive been here with my sister for the last four days. The more I find out about Kapiti Island the more I am intrigued by its haunting presence.  I read about its history, both pre-European and the latter stages when it has become a magnificent nature reserve (including a good deal of the waters around it).

One thing I notice down this way is that the Pohutukawas are still very much in flower. My driveway in Auckland was deep red over  a month ago. I suppose its the more southern lattitude--- things are just later. Actually I enjoy that, because I get the bennfits of an extended season.

It is very hot here tonight--- a direct contrast to Wellington over the hill.  The bach is really old--- I'm told that it was probably built just after WW1. I love it's timeless feel or maybe time just forgot it. What an incredible place to sit and write. New stories keep popping into my head, but I have to contain them. I have two more books to get out there first.

I received a pleasant surprise today in the from of an e-mail from Parsons Books in Auckland. They have ordered two books. Hey its not much, but at least the book is slowly getting out there.

I met my wonderful publisher today down at the Paekakariki cafe. Emma is so encouraging. I will keep trying to sell my book but the links she is making should start a bit of momentum soon, so here's hoping.

Tomorrow we are going into Wellington on the train and will spend a bit of time in Cuba Street  and its environs. I'm sure we will have plenty of choice for lunch spots. Then its back to the bach and packing for an early morning departure for Auckland. Mmmmm-- do I really want to go back. Yeah--of course, my partner and the pets await. I hear Perdy barking evertime I ring home.

Keep the comments going so I can get a bit more focus on this.

Sunday, January 2, 2011


Coastal Yarns: COASTAL YARNS by NEIL COLEMAN: "Here's another recurring theme in our house. I am sure many of you (OK-- well one of you cause that's all I have reading my blog at the..."


Here's another recurring theme in our house. I am sure many of you (OK-- well one of you cause that's all I have reading my blog at the moment-- Doug's my acorn).

There are two pets in our house; a lovely four year old cat called Jasmine and a recently arrived Jack Russel puppy  names Perdy. When friends heard about this arrangement they thew up their hands in horror.
'Dont you know that Jack Russel's  and cats don't get on--- it will be bedlam,' they said.

They were right. Bedlam arrived, right on time, in vast quantities. Initially Perdy observed from her containment. She drilled jasmine with her enquiring looks, trying to make out why "Puppy" Jasmine didn't introduce herself formally. At first, Perdy was only allowed out of her pen for relatively short periods of time as we completed her toiletry  training. She learned quickly to tell us when she needed to go outside to christen the lawn.

Jasmine in the meantime, regarded Perdy in her usual imperious manner; a trait that she still struggles to maintain. I suspect that there was a good amount of disdain shown towards us, as if to say---'What the hell have you introduced into this bastion of calm. Life was so good until you brought this black spotted thing into my home--- yes my home--- after all, you are only a tenant here.'

We tried to ignore the accusing looks, even after the card arrived. Yes, someone had the cheek to send a Xmas card on Jasmine's behalf. I mean she's clever, but  she hasn't learned to write or use the postal service--- yet.
You can guess what the card said.
 'Either the dog goes or I do.'

It hasn't quite come to that yet, but there have been moments when we wondered if they would ever get on. But nature has a way of working things out---- sort of. Actual fights haven't really eventuated. Perdy has this way of stalking Jasmine, in a mongoose-like fashion. She approaches and crouches as if to pounce. When Jasmine finished her spitting and meowing phase, she attempts to swipe Perdy with her claws. Perdy always jumps back, retreating to a safe spot. Jasmine just misses and quiet returns for a moment. Perdy of course, is far from finished. She waits until Jasmine  flees and jumps through the hole in the gate (its there  to allow access to the gate latch). Occasionally  Perdy manages to nip at Jasmine's fleeing leg, but I don't see any sign that she actually connects.

Some of you may be worried that Jasmine is getting the short end here. Don't worry. She has her way of stalking Perdy too and then taunting  her from a height. Its almost as if she is saying--- 'Bring it on bitch--- I'm ready when you are.'

Similar behaviours can be seen when  Jasmine is  passing through the cat door (which now serves as a doggie door too). Perdy takes delight in attacking, just as Jasmine is halfway  out the door. Perdy doesn't get it all her own way. If she is silly enough to follow Jasmine out the door, she is regularly the target for a pissed off pussy. So far, Jasmine hasn't caused any serious damage with her claws, although I have heard Perdy yelping a couple of times.

It is my belief that things aren't too bad. I am sure that Perdy just wants to play. We have observed them many times outside, interacting in more pleasant ways. Jasmine likes to watch  when  Perdy is in one of her early evening manic phases. You know the one, where dogs seem to go crazy. Perdy runs and jumps in a circuit, her little bottom bobbing up and down as she streaks around the small section. It only lasts a few minutes but Jasmine almost turns her head in a full circle as she trys to keep up with  Perdy's wild display.

I am almost certain that they cooperate when it comes to hunting. A few weeks ago a suicidal mouse was crazy enough to come into the section. Perdy and Jasmine immediately morphed into deadly hunters. They cornered the poor beast from two sides and eventually it was Perdy who proudly brought a wiggling mouse into the house. She was furious when we took the mouse from her.

Whilst all is not peaceful  in this formerly tranquil haven, things have settled to a predictable pattern. The fact that Jasmine just cruises imperiously past Perdy when she comes in for her meals, indicates that she has reached a level of tolerance that will prevent us having to choose between our two  beautiful companions. They are both here to stay. I guess it is us who will have to accommodate them.


Saturday, January 1, 2011


2011---- mmmm----here already. The passing of the old was so quiet this time. I joined a friend at his little house in the Waitakeries. What a sight. You often see people on TV with gardens that are bursting with produce and admire their attempts to be self-sufficient. Well Doug has really made an attempt to do this. On a small usable section site, he has made huge progress. He made raised beds, built from his own plans and there is now barely a part of his garden that isn't productive.

Amongst all this he has achieved a balance that invites you to sit and contemplate. I love the mixture of flowers an veggies that are organized into areas where you feel like you are moving into different rooms; each with its own feeling and view. Doug has organized every available space but he hasn't neglected the relaxing aspect of his garden. There are many places where you can sit and contemplate his efforts and  rest for a while, reflecting on your own world.

I can think of nothing better than coming home (if you had bothered to leave the beautiful spaces)  pouring a glass of wine and just sitting. I hope I can do something that is even half as successful as Doug. I'd be happy with that .  Good on you mate.


2)   THE DIJATC SERIES  (Damn --it's just around the corner)

Look out for my new website sometime in May 2012