Thursday, April 14, 2011

Maya Performs in Seussical

Here are some photos from Maya's school performance of Seussical. It was fantastic and the highlight, of course for her Mum, Dad and Oma, was Maya's unicycling in the circus scene.

The Cat in the Hat making mischief ...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Kamaya Our Treehouse

Treehouse ... wait a second, boat's are supposed to be in the water, floating, with the wind strumming her halyards. Not this week!

Last Friday, we hoisted Kamaya out of the water and into our backyard boatyard here at Pier 21.

She's now perched on the hard getting a spa treatment. We have a 12-foot ladder to climb up to our home. We pee in the yellow bucket and climb up and down the ladder as needed. We're a fish out of water, a whale stuck on a beach. It is an improvement from our June 2009 haul-out in Panama when we were on the rails, living on a slant with cups sliding down the table and blood rushing to our head when we slept.

Tim and I sanded and sanded all weekend. Yesterday Gloss Boats sprayed New Zealand Jotun bottom paint on her and painted Propwise on our prop to keep the nasty barnacles from setting up shop.

We're also changing the color of the boot stripe today to a tidy navy blue. The hull is getting buffed and waxed. Tim is replacing a thru-hole and hopefully we'll be back in the water tonight so Oma - who arrives this morning - doesn't have to pee in the yellow bucket.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Interview with Kai

Kai, you’ve been going to Freeman's Bay School for the past three months in New Zealand. How many kids are in your class?

I think 25.

Who are your teachers?

Anne and Jenny. Anne is a from New Zealand and Jenny is from Korea.

How do you get to school everyday?

I bike every day. It's less than 10 minutes away and I have a really cool black Fuji bike.

What’s do you like the most about school?

Probably guitar lessons. I’m learning to play the song, Get Back by Paul McCartney and John Lennon. I also like swimming when it was warm here and playing handball at lunch time.

It’s morning, here in Auckland and Kai is having breakfast before we go to school.

What are you eating?

I’m eating a crepe with ice cream.

Ice cream! How decadent. Your grandmother Oma would love to be here and share that crepe. Why do you get to eat ice cream?

Because we have shore power and get to turn on our freezer.

What’s your favorite thing to do in Auckland?

Getting books from the library.

What are you reading right now?

The Emperor of Nihoja by John Flanagan

What else have you been reading?

Lots of Asterix books. My favorite one is Asterix the Gladiator. It’s really funny.

I understand you’re learning about the stock market. What’s been your best stock pick?

BIDU, it’s the Chinese Google. I’ve made about $8000 on UP DOWN, a stock market game where I got to start with $1 million dollars.

Thanks Kai, it's time for school

Parting Shot - fun halyard swinging with Maya

Photos courtesy of Evi Nemeth, svWonderland

Monday, April 4, 2011

Making Our Own Hot Tub

At 11 am, two hours before low tide, we put on our togs (that's Kiwi for swimsuit) and arrived at Hot Water Beach with spades – not the playing cards - but shovels – and began digging. Our campground host advised us to find the perfect spot, one that’s not too hot as we would end up with scalded bums nor too cold as it wouldn’t be the perfect home-made hot tub.

We thought we found a good spot so eager Kai started digging with Maya. The neighbor hole diggers, a young Swedish couple, had already dug a substantial hole three foot deep. They even had a barrier to block the surf. “Do you know why it isn’t warm?” she asked me.

I smiled and remarked that it reminded me of Louis Sachar’s book, Holes, where the prison boys are forced to dig thousands of holes in search of a lost treasure. “Maybe it’s a New Zealand joke and we’re helping them look for a lost diamond ring,” I suggested, skeptical that warm water would actually percolate out of the sand.

But then I saw an older English woman in a black swimsuit shuffling her feet in the surf. “It’s burning down here,” she remarked to anyone who would listen. I walked up to her and wiggled my feet like I too was dancing in the sand. Within seconds, I felt the hot sand. “It’s true, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke.”

We changed our location, joined forces with other intrepid diggers and constructed a perfect hot tub, engineered such that the scalding hot water pool could warm up the cooler pool. Instead of turning the spigot, we blocked the water with sand as we enjoyed our warm water soak with the hundreds of other travelers lined up on the beach. When it got too hot, we cooled off in the chilly ocean.

Next time, we'll bring an umbrella for shade and a chilly bin (that’s Kiwi for a cooler).

Looking Back

It took me more than seven years to turn our blog into a hard covered bound book. At first, I was leery of wrapping up our adventure because...