I wish

I loved JB’s post yesterday.

You know the one with the game?

I really wish that I could play,

But cannot think of a single name.

The Seasons changed today,

My favourite time of year,

I really wish that I could play

But something else is very clear.

If wishes were horses

All Beggars would ride

If wishes came true

I could decide

To play the games,

Frolick in fall,

Make up names

And manage it all.

Sad to say I’m under the weather,

Happy to say not for long

My brain is more like a feather

Tomorrow, I am sure will be like a song!

So, from North of 43 I must bid you adieu, and wish you well!

Chris G September 23rd!

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The Case of the Missing Card.

Today is Friday here in a very wet Wellington. On Wednesday my daughter cleared the mailbox and handed me a rather woebegone envelope. It contained a card from my alter ego on here, Chris.

Of course, I was delighted to receive a card from her but thought “Oh well. She’s losing it” when I saw the date, August 2021 penned in. Then when speaking with Chris yesterday, she said she hadn’t sent me a card, but when I showed her the card and envelope she remembered sending it to me when my sister died last year. Hence the date August 2021.

So the question now arises “Where has the car been for the past twelve months?” I guess we will never know.

Scaffolders working in the pouring rain.

And a little excitement to brighten an otherwise ho-hum day –
Don’t know what they found to be cheerful about.

Now off to discuss an insurance claim – my car was smashed into on the way to Wine and Crime last night. The other driver admitted fault but the main problem is I shall be without a car for the days it will take to fix it. Could be worse – nobody was injured.

JB August 19, 2022

Lightning Strikes

“Don’t knock the weather. If it didn’t change once in a while,
nine out of ten people couldn’t start a conversation.”
Kim Hubbard, Editor at Large, People Magazine

Alright, I know I said I would not talk about the weather, but really! We have had the most amazing five days.

Torrential rain, almost gale force winds, thunder and lightning. In fact, according to the DomPost, our local paper “New Zealand saw nearly 20,000 lightning strikes in the 24 hours to 8am, and MetService say there’s more to come with a severe thunderstorm watch …” and this was only until 10am on Friday. And nothing much changed over the weekend.

The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play.
So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.”
 Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat

Today is Monday here and the newspaper records “There were 9700 lightning strikes over land from 6pm Sunday to 6am on Monday, and 150mm of rain for some, as a cold front with thunderstorms attached moved onto the North Island.” and Severe thunderstorms, high winds, heavy rain, large hail, and even tornados are likely today.”

So may I be forgiven? This is a storm rarely seen in our corner of the world. And it’s still raining.

In much of the South Island, hail and rain have been replaced with snow. And here’s a lighthearted end to this blog on Windy Wellington’s Worst Weather.

and

Pooh that really clever little bear says

So from a miserable day here in Wellington at 41.2924° S, 174.7787° E, I am off now t read my book, to keep warm and dry.

Oh, look. There’s Chris in the corner of the photo.

Thursday and the Rain Continues

““The rain to the wind said, You push and I’ll pelt.’
They so smote the garden bed That the flowers actually knelt,
And lay lodged–though not dead.
I know how the flowers felt
.” 
Robert Frost

The rain still falls torrentially, the wind blows and the temperature continues to fall.

Yesterday was very hard all around. Very wet and windy. A friend had to come to town to have a PET scan. PET? “A positron emission tomography (PET) scan shows how organs and tissues are working.” I picked her up from the railway station and took her to the hospital. I went in with her and soon a nurse appeared, took my telephone number, took Norma by the arm and led her away, saying to me as they went, “Come back at 3.

I duly returned at 3pm. My friend suffers from claustrophobia and so had been sedated. She was very wobbly and needed coffee. So that was our first stop.

I drove her home some 50 km in the driving rain, thunder and lightning and wind close to gale force. She lives close to my son and his family. I had planned to stay overnight with them but unfortunately, they are all in isolation, so no bed and the only option was to drive back home.

I have to say that after driving for 60 plus years, this was the worst drive ever. I was so pleased to arrive home.

So my question then was how was I going to spend the evening. Are you, like me, with friends who are either moving into or already living in retirement villages? On Netflix, I saw an advertised movie, POMS. In it, Diane Keaton moves from her apartment in New York to a retirement community that is all that I would hate if I ever had to move into one. The lavish, well-maintained property fosters cheery dispositions and relaxed lifestyles — things a cynical curmudgeon like Martha and me, despise.  There are so many rules and regulations, which of course really annoys Martha.

Unexpectedly, Martha forms a strong friendship with her noisy, vivacious, free-spirited next door neighbour. Martha has an unrealised dream of being a cheerleader and together these two women form a group of eight, eighty-year-old cheerleaders.

I don’t think this is one of Keaton’s best movies but it was certainly what I needed yesterday after a difficult day.

So now back to my usual crime movies after that brief sojourn into comedy.

June 2, 2022


 The Day The Rain Came

Wherever you go, no matter what the weather,
always bring your own sunshine.”

Anthony J D’Angelo. American author
1909-1984

For farmers across the country, the rain that fell overnight was welcome. This year summer with its heat has continued well into April. But the usual summer showers have not. 

Easter usually, is celebrated(?)  with a wet tent and holidaymakers looking for somewhere to go. But not this year.  It was a perfect four-day break, sunny, warm and delightful. 

I think back on the Easters when the children were younger. We had a boat that we kept at Lake Taupo some 300 km from Wellington. and so on Thursday of Easter, we would pack up the car and take off for the weekend. We always hoped it would be four good days and we could get out on the lake and do some fishing or water skiing; however it so rarely worked out that way.  Mostly it was several miserable, wet days in a motel or hotel, with two children totally bored and itching to get out on the water.

And then when the sun did eventually come out, the mood immediately shifted as we all traipsed happily to where the boat was moored.

Alas for me, those days are now over.  My son keeps his boat in the location where my DYS stored his, and he and his family spend many hours fishing, water skiing and generally enjoying this beautiful area.

So, thanks for the much. needed rain and special thanks to the weather gods for a stunning Easter weekend.

With that weekend and the following days in mind, we can now move on to the cooler, wet days of autumn in New Zealand.

JB April 21, 2022

It’s Friday and not at all what I expected

It’s Friday here at 80W Longitude and north of 43. Judith my blogging partner in the far and distant south will awaken to Saturday. In the sun. At about my 1p.m.

I am not complaining about our winter – you know how I feel about that, We actually had a pretty calm week weather-wise. I puttered, read, did some walking, but had decided to save my out-and-about activities for today. Friday. You know, shopping, lunch out, some treats.

This is what I planned, cold and clear
This is what I got, wind, snow

Okay, truthfully today is not as bad as it was January 17th, but snow is flying, not falling, and the wind sounds gale-force, certainly more than I am prepared to face.

So, I now plan for this to be a low-cost, highly energetic domestic (read cleaning) day here.

Probably just as well since my horoscope in the local paper said:

And yes the print was that bold. Ah nuts, my intended spending wasn’t really on things that have lasting value. A little natural nature intervention?

I had some lovely wake up posts today that set the tone for a very positive day:

LA who always seems to be waking up on the wrong side of 50 is my first read of the day and she called this Anything Can Happen Friday: Love Songs.

Then John W. Howell talked about Good News.

Then to top it off Sandra at Into The Light Adventures photographed first light.

So while this day is not what I had planned it is shaping up to be a fine one. I have music, at least one bit of good news, and an inspiring sunrise.

My friends may your day be a good one, planned or otherwise.

Chris G Friday February 11, 2022

Well It Had To Happen

“Do not be angry with the rain. It simply does not know how to fall upwards.”
Vladimir Nabokov

After several weeks of almost perfect summer, sunshine, virtually no wind, and minimal rain; in fact on asking around no-one was able to. tell me when was the last time it rained in Wellington, and for the windy city to be calm is very unusual.

But all good things must eventually come to an end. And we were promised rain this week and yesterday it arrived. Late in the day so it didn’t impinge on anything already planned but..Overnight it poured and it has continued through the day and is promised for the next two days. What a shame as this is a holiday weekend here and children will be returning to school after the summer break on Tuesday when the sun is forecast to return.

Looking back, as one does as one gets older, I found a post written in my other blog when I was a new blogger way back in March 2012. Note I only started blogging in March 2011 at the same time as my partner in crime (?) Chris the other half of A World Apart.

Anyway, I found this post which struck a chord with me. Who knew that loonies and toonies are the $1 and $2 dollar coins in Canada. Well, I used to live there and I didn’t know that. My excuse is that they still had $1 and $2 dollar bills when I lived there eons ago.

My mind went into overdrive at the thought of all that money scattered around the roadside – somewhere between $C3.5 and $C5 million in coins.

According to the Vancouver Sun “Crews used a one-metre round industrial magnet on a backhoe to pick up the toonies and loonies..”  And having commented that it would be an onerous task the Constable  on the scene said “I walked through the scene where there was more money than I will ever see in my whole life,” Ontario Provincial Police officer Marc Depatie with the South Porcupine detachment.”

Truck crash

I wonder how many of those coins found their way into pockets of drivers who were stopped by the accident.

And there is always something to be pleased about in any situation – today I don’t have to water the garden. Yes, Pollyanna is alive and well, and living in Wellington.

JB February 5, 2022

Old Friends from Far Away

No distance of place nor lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other’s worth.”
Robert Southey, English Poet 1774-1843

Isn’t it amazing? Thinking back it seems that summer was always long hot days, car seats too hot to sit on, cold drinks in the shade and children and adults spending hours in the sea..

When we lived in the UK, summer could not be relied upon. But when we arrived in New Zealand fifty plus years ago, it really was as we imagined, or as we had altered our memories to be. Summer in the UK was spasmodic; summer in Auckland NZ was long and hot and wonderful.

Fast forward to 2021. Auckland still. enjoys those summers, but unfortunately for us, Wellington some 650 km (400 miles) away, doesn’t. And while we have been promised a great summer by NIWA (National Institute of Water and Air) it isn’t living up to the promise.The past three days have produced pouring and sometimes, even torrential rain.

Nobody ever tires of talking about the weather. Often it is the opening of conversations on meeting a friend or acquaintance. But now, I am pleased to report that the rain has stopped, the wind has died down and for the first day the sun is trying. And of course, Pollyanna aka JB, always responds to complaints about rain “Well, at least I don’t have to water the ,garden.

So that’s it for today. No deep. thoughts or moments of Aha! Off now to have lunch with a friend who lives at the beach. So, until the next time.

Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody
does anything about it.
Charles Dudley Warner, American Essayist and Novelist,
1829 – 1900

JB 8 December, 2021

Talking Into the Future

No distance of place nor lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other’s worth.”
Robert Southey, English Poet 1774-1843

We have a friend in Ecuador Joss, who used to be an avid blogger but now spends her time writing and doing craft work. Occasionally we spy something she has to say on Facebook. For a time she would sometimes join us on our weekly chats and she it was who coined the phrase “talking into the future”.

As I have said before, we are the first in the world to see the sunrise. So when we talk it is 10.30 am on Sunday here in New Zealand, it is 4.30 pm on Saturday in Ontario and Ecuador.

Long before the internet and cheap long distance phone calls, all calls to family in the Northern Hemisphere started with “What time is it there”. Not too difficult to work out for the UK as we are 12 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time, but of course this changes when either country Springs forward or Falls back. But time for calls to California was more difficult to work out.

Now we have the internet and with the world clock app we can readily see the time in any part of the world.

What else is running around this aged mind today? Well Summer has not returned to our far off land and we are warned there will be heavy rain and strong southerly winds in the next few days. Oh yes, another difference. The cold wind here in New Zealand is the Southerly, while in the Northern Hemisphere it is the Northerly. So when buying a house here, one looks for a Northerly outlook. The weather is the subject of chats and messages between us. Nobody ever tires of talking about the weather. But it is something we can’t do anything about, so this evening when it rained I told myself that it was good, I didn’t have to water the garden. At this time of the year, the flowers (and weeds) are blooming, but with the wind the ground dries really quickly.

Other differences? Of course when I am starting my day, Chris is getting ready to end hers – 18 hours difference at present. And sweaters and thermals compared to Summer dresses and sandals. soups vs salads, hot drinks vs cold, and on and on. You get the idea.

And if you have read any of my posts in Growing Younger Each Day you will know I am enamoured of Mary Oliver. Her quotes are peppered throughout my posts. I don’t expect A World Apart to be any different. time

 “I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed.”
Mary Oliver, American Poet. 1935-2019

And from an author new to me –

“Writing is nothing less than thought transference, the ability to send one’sideas out into the world, beyond time and distance, taken at the value of the words, unbound from the speaker.”
Arthur M. Jolly, American playwright and screenwriter. 1969 –

Another Difference

Good morning from a sunny, still, and warm, Wellington Thursday. Well warm to us. We have a very temperate climate – no really highs or dreadful lows. So Summer heat for us, requiring air-conditioning, open windows and doors, and trips to the beach, is a balmy 25/26 degrees. And warm? 20 degrees is warm for us.

You may not know but Wellington is classed alongside Chicago as being one of the windiest in the world. So on a still day like this, we celebrate.

And we are the first country to see the sun each morning. So while it probably is still Wednesday where you live, today it is Thursday here.

Today I am going to a friend’s for lunch. She lives over the hill. Well I always tell Chris that anywhere else in the world, one would call the Rimutaka Hill a mountain, but in New Zealand…. Oh yes, we are a mountainous country, great for skiers as no ski field is more that four hours drive away, and in many places, Such as Christchurch in the South Island, the field is much closer.

Lunch will be outside beside her pool and then a walk through Greytown a little village that has been almost forgotten by time.Unfortunately, we don’t have the old buildings and the little picturesque villages of England. New Zealand is a young country, and we now keep any building over one hundred years old. This has not always been the case, as during the heady days of the 1980s many old and lovely buildings were torn down to make way for the glass fronted monstrosities that now house offices in our Capital and other cities. But we are learning that heritage is important.

So as Chris dresses up in her thermals, sweater and boots, I am getting ready with a light dress (plus a jacket just in case) and hat, and of course, sunscreen. By the way, in case you don’t know it, New Zealand and Australia have the highest rates of sun cancer in the world. So nobody goes out without hat and sunscreen a soon as the clouds lift and the sun shines.

So that’s all for today. Who knows what I will write about tomorrow! JB