Monday, July 18, 2005

Ellie's Birthday...

On 14th July it was my neice, Eleanor's (Ellie), 9th birthday!!!

On the following Saturday Ellie co-hosted a radio programme on Worthing's Splash FM!! She was so good, we were listening from New Zealand via the internet and I even managed to get a message to her live in the radio!

Well done Ellie - next stop, the world.....

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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Orana Park, Christchurch

I played Aunty Helen for a day and took Rebecca and Luke to Orana Park, Christchurch's zoo!! It was just a good excuse for ME to go on a fun day out and eat chips!!

Rebecca and Luke are the kids of our good friends Tanya and Richard. They moved here in November last year, from the UK, although Tanya is a returning Kiwi!

We had a great time - even if it DID decide to rain all day! Probably the ONLY day it rained in the whole of July too! At least it wasn't toooo cold....

Orana Park is actually pretty good, as far as zoo's go. I'm not a great fan of them myself, but at least this zoo had nice big paddocks and a more "natural" environment than, say, London zoo's moulded-cement enclosures.

We'll go back again in the summer when the Moorfields arrive - by then the extensive lion and tiger enclosures should be finished and, hopefully, the weather will have improved!!

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Thursday, July 07, 2005

Skiing Lessons at Mount Hutt

Even though this is now, officially, the warmest winter since New Zealand records began, I decided I'd head up to Mount Hutt with a girlfriends husband, Richard. Today (Thurs 7th) I can't move from the waist down..... god it HURTS!!!

I'd decided that I was going to learn to ski, I can't snowboard anymore because of my ankle injury. Well, I booked into the learner lesson and was then told to go up to intermediate after a quick "test"! Hooray! I loved it, can't wait to go again, with Warren in tow this time! (It was "safer" for me to go on my own for the first attempt to save Warren from any of my "I can't do it" tantrums!! ) I had 2 x 2hr lessons - knackering!

My instructor, Josh, was great and I plan to have some private lessons with him once there is some decent snow (their worst season for years at the moment!).

Mount Hutt itself was glorious ( ), and it's just a 1.5 hr drive from Christchurch. From the resort there are beautiful views out over the Canterbury Plains across to the Pacific Ocean. The day I was there we had blue skies and it was lovely and warm (until about 3pm when the sun disappeared behind the mountains!). The access road is, errrm, scary, to say the least. Gravel with sheer drops either side (ring any bells Mum?!).

Oh, and Prince William arrived in a helicopter as I was making my way up to the top of the beginners slope on the magic carpet!! So I was snow-ploughing in good company!

Right, I'm off to buy an illuminous "all-in-one" ski-suit with matching leopard skin head band.... haha.

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