Tuesday, November 22, 2016

What a difference a day makes! Anna and Mike.

Thurs 17 Nov
It has been blowing hard all day, wind with a tear inducing chill. Huge clouds wobble and roll across the heavens, big and bloated with rain. Sometime in the afternoon, there is a gap between showers, and I take a gamble that it might be dry for an hour and go out for a walk, knowing that I will probably get soaked.
The wind is exhilarating, the noise of it is everywhere.

 Fri 18 Nov
Today could not be more different. Just a zephyr of a breeze, a playful ripple on the water. Sky a monotonous blue. I find myself interested in detail, a bumble bee sipping nectar from yellow kowhai flowers, black swans and ducks with their young, a solitary Royal Spoonbill. I hardly look at the sky.

Phormium tenax (NZ flax) showing old and new flower spikes.

Royal Spoonbill.

Mallard ducks.

Black Swan.

Black Swans and Cygnets, if you look carefully at the swan on the right you will see that she has a cygnet resting on her back.

Hawksbury Lagoon.

Kowhai flowers with a happy bumble bee (Bombus terrestris). New Zealand has 4 species of bumble bee, all introduced from England in 1885 and 1906 to help pollinate red clover.

Kowhai flowers after shedding their yellow petals.

Sunday 20 Nov
A very special day.
Today we had a visit from Anna and Mike. I have been reading and enjoying Anna's pottery blog -Anna's Ceramics- for quite some time now, and it was a delight to have a visit from Anna and her husband Mike, whilst they were on a tour of the South Island of New Zealand. One of the realities of living where we do is that we are unlikely to ever meet many of my blogging friends, so this visit was quite a historic event! We really enjoyed their company, had lots to talk about, and do hope that we are able to see them again one day.

Anna and Mike in front of my wood fired kiln.


gz said...

beautiful images.
Its good to finally meet people for real...hope we'll manage it before too long

Arkansas Patti said...

Loved seeing the swans but they can be very aggressive with young. Hope you were using a zoom.
How neat to meet a fellow blogger in your corner of the world. I have only met a couple and it is more like a reunion than a meeting for you all ready know a lot about eachother. Keep enjoying good company, the great wildlife and calm days.

Peter said...

Hi Gwynneth,
Thank you for your encouragement, it would be really nice to meet up if you do manage to get to New Zealand again. There is a spare potter's wheel in my studio!

Hi Patti,
I find that black swans a lot less aggressive than the white ones, but they certainly look after their young ones, which is lovely to see. I like to congratulate them on their good looking cygnets when I walk past! It is fun meeting someone for the first time after getting to know them from the blog. It is almost a surprise to find that they too occupy 3 dimensional space and have the right number of arms and legs! "Reunion" is just the right way to describe it! Wish we could magic you over here!

Anna said...

Hi Peter
It was so good to spend some Real Life time with you and Laura. And yes, it was very much like a reunion.
You both made us so very welcome and I'll be blogging about our visit very soon.
Some lovely photos in this post of yours... I found it so interesting looking for the different bumble bees in your garden.
All the best

Peter said...

Hi Anna,
Lovely to hear from you, isn't it good to discover that blogs contain real people! The bumble bees are really fun, but frustrating to try and photograph. I spent rather a lot of time recently chasing some around the garden with my camera and very little success! So far the best bumblebee photos have mostly occurred by accident.