Well, so much for weekly writing and idyllic quiet moments by the fire. Life has been nonstop full on since the last blogpost and I’ve had constant companionship over the last three weeks with very little to no time to myself.
Firstly, the cows are gone and have not been seen since I last saw them jump over the fence and run down the road. YAY!
Secondly, Darek arrived and has been here for three weeks. He’s been a super star – he fixed the horn on the 4×4 and has taken over as lead chef here at Birdsong. We’ve enjoyed a handful of days in Christchurch going out for meals, meeting up with friends, and attending the circus, but mostly we’ve been in Wainui, working, eating, and socializing.
Friend Paulo arrived shortly after Darek to spend two weeks with us. We met Paolo at Kiwiburn and he spent three weeks with us in March and now another two before he returns to the States.
The guys did a great job doing ‘manly’ things for me — pruning hedges and cutting down and processing trees (as we’re preparing for a big digger project this spring). The tree cutting produced a 6’ high x 12’ long mound of tree debris which the three of us spent a full day putting through our brand new shiny wood chipper (a Hansa C6). We now have enough wood chips to mulch the entire property!
We also spent time landscaping the pergolas/archways that Paulo built for us in the lower paddock. We dug up the grass, lay down cardboard and weed mat, and threw a 5” layer of chips on top; planted spring bulbs, and Paulo & I collected several buckets of large rocks from the beach to use to line the path.
Paulo also spent some time turning the telephone pole which sits unsightly in the lower paddock into an artistic ‘totem’ pole which now blends into the landscape a bit more nicely.
Ollie came back last week and so the three of us turned to four. Ollie’s been working on getting my new bedroom together – sanding and staining the new floor that he & Bruce installed last month and prepping the room for painting as well as finishing up other small tasks around the house.
So, it’s been me and the boys and Nina too. With Paulo and Darek here, we’ve stepped up the culinary cuisine and they have made some of the best meals we’ve ever had at Birdsong. We’ve collected fresh seaweed from the beach for seaweed salad; picked up a fresh whole salmon at the pier which Darek processed and we dined on ceviche, salmon miso soup, lox, and salmon pizzas; we’ve done roasts on the fire; and had two Mexican-themed nights with chicken enchiladas and burritos with all the fixins. YUM!
We also held our first full moon party (just the four of us) and spent the evening sitting outside around Paolo’s tree stump candle which he made by taking an old 2’ tall tree stump and chainsawing decorative lines through it which then burned beautifully over several hours.
On the Bruce front, well, I’ve got another announcement to make: Bruce is coming back to New Zealand! Yes, plans have changed. I’ve talked with Bruce many times over the last three weeks. He had an absolutely amazing experience at Jill Purce’s workshop in the UK. So much so, that he’s going back to do another workshop over the June solstice. And so much so, that he’s had a change of heart regarding the temple project and feels he needs to be back here in New Zealand. I don’t want to speak for him, so you’ll just have to ask him ‘why’ and stay tuned for his blogpost of an account of his journey. So, Bruce will be back home in New Zealand on July 1st in time to hunker down with me for the New Zealand winter. And then we will still venture to the States in September to attend a wedding and see friends and family but probably not now going to Burning Man.
Life is so interesting!
PS: Thanks Kat for fixing the blog!
PSS: Three more mice dead!