Saturday, November 13, 2010


The phone call came from an acquaintance who asked in slightly boozy tones'why did I wrie a blog. Nobody would bother to read it.
'Right,'I decided 'keeping a blog is a bit like talking to oneself, or shouting down a black hole. If nobody is bothering to read I shall concentrate on real writing, 'and I did for a couple of months. Then the e mails began, not many, but enough to give me heart, and friends started asking what had happened to my blog, so here I go again, with details of my rivetting ocial life.
By the way I am not responsible for what happened in Christchurch a week after I came home. It was not caused by tremors from me getting off the plane. I have lost too much weight to endanger anything.
After shivering throughout September, bewailing the fact that I should have still been in Crete I spent a day with Glenavy Women's Institute on their mystery bus tour.
The photo at the top of this posting is from the Annalong gardens, near Makakihi. It seems there were three tearaway brothers named Quinn who did something dreadful in Ireland. Their father collected rents from Annalong villagers for the absentee landlord. The brothers stole the rent money and took of to Liverpool. When they heard the landlord was after them they stowed away on a ship to Australia and finally reached New Zealand. They started a brick works and prospered, built a homestead which has endured inspite of being damaged by fire. We enjoyed tea and hot scones in the farm kitchen, as well as hearing some cracking stories about the house, like the priest's room. An itinerant priest travelled from Timaru to Oamaru, and stopped for a night at Annalong homestead in a room set aside for him.
Annalong was only the first stop on a busy day, I shall continue this saga on another day; lunch at a millionnaires playground, an Ashburton craft village where the clothes are NOT made in China, but right there on the premises, a garden which won a gold medal at the Ellerslie Flower Show and what Par Lap's statue in Timaru is resting its foot on.
Stay tuned.

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