On Saturday morning I headed down the road to the bottom of Lyttelton Harbour, where Living Springs farm is. I was the only volunteer who wasn't associated with the English school, so I did my best to teach the other volunteers English English and not what passes for English in New Zealand...;_)
When we lived in Hondarribia, there was a small fishing fleet there and there were 5 fishmongers. Admittedly, it was a larger place than Lyttelton, but considering the size, there should be at least ONE fishmonger.
We buy fish from the market most Saturdays, so that's something. But I don't know if it comes off one of these little boats. I'll have to ask.
Our conservatory is currently serving as my studio. It is a good place to watch the weather come in over the harbour, especially when it is blowing a cold southerly like today. Billie has one of his beds in here and likes to keep me company until it is time to light the log burner in the lounge.
There is a government-backed committment to make New Zealand predator free by 2050 and Kiwis are being encouraged to trap and kill predators in their own backyard. The focus is on rats, possums and stoats, but they would also like to see the back of hedgehogs. I have to admit I couldn't bear to kill the two hedgehogs we found in the sump last summer. Hedgehogs are dying out in the UK but it seems they are thriving here.
We have however been trapping rats. We have 12 traps in the attic that Duncan checks on a regular basis and there are now 6 dead rats buried in the garden. Until recently I had three trap tunnels baited with peanut butter and set up around the house to catch rats. These didn't catch any rats, only sweet little field mice (which are also an invasive species).
Although I didn't like it, I continued trapping these poor mice until one of the traps caught and killed a sparrow. Another "exotic" species, but that was a the last straw for me and I've stopped using those traps for now.
I forgot about Mother's Day earlier this year because it is different in New Zealand and the US (Sunday 13th May this year) to the UK (Sunday 31st March). Fortunately, Father's Day is on the same day in the US and the UK (though NZ's is on 2nd September). Given that I have to submit my Sundays weeks ahead, there is no excuse to make the same mistake.
The boyf, Billie and I headed out to Lincoln last Friday and really quite enjoyed it. It is missing the sea, but has a little river and it doesn't have any hills, but it seems popular with cyclists. And what a library.
The laboratory was the closest you'll get to an English pub in Lincoln. Good food and dog friendly. Read more on the boyf's blog.
If I didn't live in Lyttelton, I’d probably choose New Brighton (though I would be worried long-term about the threat of sea level rise and tsunamis). New Brighton has a fabulous long sandy beach and a cool modern pier that stretches out into the Pacific. The council had to do a lot of work to repair it after the earthquake and it is due to open to the public again tomorrow.
New Brighton also has one of the new electric car charging points that are springing up around Christchurch.
But the thing I like best about new Brighton is the library. You can sit and work in a chair that looks out over the ocean and there is a cafe below whenever you need a break from that.