Friday, October 10, 2014

Piha---bush walk, waterfall and 'that wonderful beach.' It's a Jack Russell paradise.

Early this afternoon I received a call from my good friend, Joy. Basically she was saying, 'get off your arse and join me for a walk at Piha (Yes, the famous west coast beach near Auckland)and walk up the waterfall. If tis invite had occurred about 18 months ago, I would probably have found an excuse to avoid such an excursion and slumped back on the couch and vegetated, putting yet more weight on. Now, in my post-bariatric surgery 'me' format, I accept and relish such invitations. Perdy was a pain in the butt on the 40 minute drive to the valley of the waterfall, continually reminding us that we were 'not there yet!' Once we found a car park in the only tiny spot left (thank goodness for little Hyundai Getzs) we were soon following Perdy on her long lead along the pathway, the sun darting through and casting a spell on the stream that ran beside us. Perdy dashed to the end of her lead, imploring me to let her loose. No such luck, 'Girlfriend,' I thought---no I said---because I knew well what she intended if she was cast free---total chaos in the bush! The pathway was actually suitable for prams and wheelchairs, until it descended to the waterfall. The view of the fall was magnificent but the last part of the pathway would be impossible for the anyone in a chair or with a pram. Even I was stretched when it came to crossing the slippery rocks, with Perdy pulling me in all directions. I had to accept the help of a nice young lady to get me safely across the last bit. it was either that or taking an unplanned and very undignified dive into the stream. Once across, Perdy delighted in the cool stream, seemingly unconcerned about the 50 metre waterfall cascading down in stages from the top. Perdy was happy to jump in to chase a leaf I threw in, bringing the limp thing back to me as if it was a sacred treasure. we took some pictures and then returned to the car, via a more gentle pathway. We were both pleased that we had taken the 'high road,' feeling quite smug re our adventure. Once back at the car, we decided to head to the beach at Piha itself and let Perdy have an unfettered run and for Joy to take some pictures that she will no doubt stick up online. Guess who is now dead to the world on the couch. NO----not me!--I am writing this , silly! Perdy is--dreaming yet again of her next wonderful adventure.

Is China easing up re 'social media?' Of course--'one swallow doesn't make a summer!'

I was most [pleased to see that China was back---reading my blog today---well, OK, one reader was. I thought---is China allowing access to social media again? maybe the 'powers that be' are checking the 'content' of my blog. Perhaps I better not say anything about how Beijing is determined to stay stubbornly to it's policy of 'vetting the candidates for the election in Hong Kong in 2017.Perhaps they are now confident that the students and freedom loving people of Hong Kong have vented their displeasure at the heavy handedness of Beijing, to the point that the streets will empty and people will return to their daily grind of making a living or going to classes. Chinese leadership has always been known for its 'patience.' Or---so much is happening re the Ebola crisis in West Africa and the daily horrors we hear about in the ISIS versus the Kurds---maybe these issues have taken the heat off China. Then again, will the world care if China decides to 'put things right,' in Hong Kong? Either way, I welcome back my Chinese readers and having said nothing that would offend the leaders of China, I am sure access will be granted to my ranting. Perhaps I can concentrate on the glorious activities of Mr Putin or the absence of the 'dear leader' in North Korea. My---the world is such an 'interesting place!'

UK---do you want to be part of Europe?

OK, I'm a Kiwi with English and Scottish forefathers so I claim that such a pedigree gives me a right to comment on what could be happening in the UK. And what is that, you say? Well from 'down-under,' it looks like you lot 'over there' have this desire to re-design yourselves; as what yet, is a b it unclear. The land of 'hedge groves' and country lanes still exists, although you seem to be doing your best to pull out the latter in the name of efficient farming. Hey, give up on that one---we have that to a tee down here in new Zealand so don't worry too much---we will keep sending you the best of Kiwi! The UK is way more 'cosmopolitan' than the land my 'relatives' left a century and a half ago; some say that is good whilst others have a different opinion. There are those amongst you who would go to great endeavours to take the UK back to the days of 'Rule Britannia,' and others who would like to change the face of Britain for their reasons.In between the great mass who just want to get on with their lives. Of course the UK today is part of a European Union, a huge market that also has an 'over-riding parliament;' the very one that more and more UK citizens are taking umbrage with. Just how far this movement is prepared to go to achieve the 'Island fortress' of times gone by, is a question that even the mainstream political parties are now placing in the public debating forums. The very recent election results, both for the European Parliament and the UK one are showing some 'interesting' trends. Is the UK about to 'jump ship?' What would that mean for the UK economy? Would 'Mother England' look to its former colonies to rebrand itself as our major trading partner? Too late for that dear Mummy! We have long since become a worldly member of the greater family of nations. So-----what to do, UK? The choice is yours and I suspect that the 'stiff upper lip,' non-emotional nuance you formerly projected may have gone the same way that the glory of your past went==consigned to the annals of history. Face up, fess up---take your pick. It is your decision and I suspect that you will adapt as you have always done and no politician should make that decision for you, because that would be serving their purposes, not those of my dear heart--that was and still is, the UK!