The things you learn....

You don't know what you've got 'til it's gone...

For the last 48 hours, we have been without power. That includes no water, since our water supply is rainwater and we have an electric pump. I had to keep reminding myself that other people are in much worse shape than we were.

We were able to get take-out takeaways and went to the local swimming pool for a shower and a dip. This is how we made coffee:

I have to say that I did some of that cleaning that you never find time to do along with some reading, mostly short stories  and some gardening. I also took lots of photos but couldn't look at them until the power came back on :)

The hard part was making sure you have a light of some sort everywhere you went after dark, even  just to go pee in the middle of the night, cuz it gets DARK at our house except for moonlight.

We had an upright freezer full of meat that I just couldn't bring myself to check on because I just knew it was all soggy. Fortunately, on the second day, Hubby insisted that we check and I was totally wrong!  It was all still frozen! I have to call that a miracle, as our closest neighbor lost ALL the meat in his freezer. Since we weren't sure how long we'd be without power, Hubby's boss said it was OK to take it to work to put in the freezer there as long as we needed it. What a great guy!

Of course, all of this happening just before we are off on holiday made things a little stressful but it will be a bit more relaxing to get away.

But, all is well. We have power, I can do laundry, life is good.


After all this time....

...I am still finding things that boggle my mind. This article from the newspaper makes you shake your head! 

All that separates Linton Military Camp from the rest of the world is little more than a stock fence, a portion of deer fencing, and a residential profile aluminium fence. 
Part of the perimeter fence at Linton Military Camp. Would it deter intruders? Hardly.

It's not much better than a No 8 wire job and the Defence Force has known for years its security is too lax for a 21st century military base. Stroll in off the local golf course, climb over a fence and throw contraband over the wire to in,ante in the prison!  Read more here   https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/101085189/linton-military-camp-is-building-a-new-fence-for-extra-security


No screens in NZ

So many of you have asked about screens for windows here in New Zealand.

We have two types of windows in our house that are pretty standard for NZ homes and you will notice that they open outward. So, you can see why screens like those in the US are not an option.

There is a new type of magnetic screens I've seen advertised that fits inside on metal window frames. You just  pull up a corner to open and close the window.

The problem with that is that many of the rental homes are older ones that would have to update the windows for these screens. I have no idea how expensive they would be but I doubt that most landlords would be willing to buy them.

We bought some 'screen doors' that attach with velcro (and pins to keep the velcro in place) that  open down the middle with magnets. They work OK as long as there's not a wind to blow it open.

And, I noticed a screen door that folds up like an accordion that looks promising.

So, that's what happens when you live in a young country that is only the size of a medium-sized US state.


great choice for a plague

As many of you know, we live in a worker's cottage of a dairy farm. The cows graze on several pastures between our house and the share-farmer in the farmhouse at the other end. So, we only have them across the fence a few times during the year. When they are near and it's really hot, we get a few more flies than usual but nothing to write home about.

When I first got here, Hubby snickered at my mission to find fly swatters (as opposed to using fly spray) because that is what I was used to. And I noticed lots of different kinds of fly spray which, in my mind, contradicted the '100% pure' image of the country. But I digress...

My opinion of how to kill flies has drastically changed this last week or so when it was hotter than I have ever felt here. Without screens on the windows, we were inundated with the nasty buggers! And I guess they annoyed everybody else in Taranaki, too, since the fly spray shelves were totally empty in our regular grocery store!

I have sprayed and whacked more flies in the last week than I have the whole time I've been here! And I told myself, it can't stay like this forever--autumn will show up eventually.

During several attempts to clean up the fly corpses from the window sills and all over the carpet and fly crap from EVERYWHERE, it crossed my mind once or twice that flies were an excellent choice for a plague, especially without fly spray. I know the Egyptians survived, but it couldn't have been easy.