Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Holiday Open Thread 1: Beach and Backyard

200 Responses

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  • Jackie Clark, in reply to Tamsin6,

    You're never a stranger, Tamsin. It just takes a lot longer than a few weeks to get back into the stream of life wherever you are from. I would say it even takes a couple of years, or so. If, on the other hand, you have always felt a little like a stranger, then it is best to be where you feel most comfortable, I think.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

  • Jacqui Dunn, in reply to Tamsin6,

    bitten to bits the evening before we left NZ, sitting on the verandah of our friends house on the Te Atatu peninsula

    Sympathies abound. Those pesky little varmints would just love some tender Anglicized flesh. We are forced to smother ourselves in BugOff and the like, even to water the garden. I guess it balances the pleasures of lazy, warm hours though:)

    Deepest, darkest Avondale… • Since Jul 2010 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • Sam F,

    Sympathies abound. Those pesky little varmints would just love some tender Anglicized flesh.

    I'll add my sympathies too on behalf of my partner Vivian, who to her ongoing dismay seems to attract mosquitoes like some kind of lightning rod.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1609 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey,

    I've taken to taking jeans/pants, shoes/socks, and a long sleeved shirt or jacket when going out to friends places in the evening and if I know there'll be some outside activity. Come dusk, I excuse myself and change, and avoid the midges... makes for a miles better event for me. :)

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 659 posts Report Reply

  • Jacqui Dunn, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    Midges?? I guess I've got a mindset about mosquitoes - never thought of those!

    When I worked in Wanganui many years ago (before the "h") there was a particularly virulent little mozzie with striped legs that took a shine to me. Wherever I was bitten would swell up mightily, and then the whole limb would ache. The answer, I was told at the time, was to take VitB6. The insects don't like the taste (or smell) of you.

    Deepest, darkest Avondale… • Since Jul 2010 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Jacqui D - we occaisionally meet loopies who have been encouraged to take lots of B6. We recognise them by their pink lumpy appearance & the happy crowd of flying predators haloing them...

    (here we have sandflies & mosquitos & - I deeply suspect -noseeums. And the Whataroa virus, found in sandflies here, although no-one has yet discovered what it does.)

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Jacqui Dunn, in reply to Islander,

    Oh-oh. Actually, I never did take B6 because I'd just read a book which outlined the danger of taking one B out of balance with the others, and I didn't have a problem with W(h)anganui's mozzies after that, because I went back to Wellington.

    Deepest, darkest Avondale… • Since Jul 2010 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • Raymond A Francis,

    One of the other nice things about the east coast of the South Island, is we don't get flying biting things. Something my Taranaki born wife delights in, although a trip North next month has her hunting for the Dimp
    I am sure Islander will back me up on this as she jumps for East to West and must notice the difference

    45' South • Since Nov 2006 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Raymond A Francis,

    I've encountered mosquitos over the hill but not our local thick swarms & sandflies - if they exist- are pathetic downhearted solitary creatures...hey, people go about with bare arms and legs on the East Coast!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Mosquitos! Pah–small fry!! I was scratching around in a pile of mulch in December and disturbed a wasp nest. Five stings on the left hand and six on the left hand. Now, that hurt!

    Just taken the cats to the vet, for jabs and pills. Cost $179. Why does animal treatment cost so much more than treatment of humans?

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Yikes! Two left hands? Left and right, I think it should be.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Jacqui Dunn, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    Well, some people have two left feet!

    Deepest, darkest Avondale… • Since Jul 2010 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    Lazy summer days? partying till you drop?
    Nah, I built this... and This
    :-D

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    Classic crib & dunny/shower -excellent!
    Obviously no problem with sandflies there!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Cecelia,

    Love the brand new outhouse.

    My summer has been more poetic. I've rediscovered sea swimming since coming up north. At these beaches have I swum this summer:

    Matapouri (with dolphins)
    Whangaumu
    Taiharuru
    Onerahi (warm, muddy harbour)
    Ngunguru
    Opito (Kerikeri not Coromandel)
    Ruakaka

    Poetry in place names ...

    Hibiscus Coast • Since Apr 2008 • 559 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Heh, I heard you also demolished an outhouse, Steve :-) I've been accused of the same thing, but never literally!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to BenWilson,

    Yup, hate the smell of LPG in the mornings. Yeah, it was LPG not methane... ;-)

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Islander,

    Well, I had no problem with sandflies. The giant huhu bugs, on the other hand, can be slightly annoying when you get them stuck in your hair and they crawl across your face but you get used to them after a few beers.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    Just taken the cats to the vet, for jabs and pills. Cost $179. Why does animal treatment cost so much more than treatment of humans?

    To be prosaic: because your taxes don't pay for it. Over here humans are much, much more expensive to treat. Not that animals are cheap, but.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Maybe we should start taxing them--especially all those cats who lie around all day doing sweet f/all.
    Seriously though, the economics of pet ownership is an under-investigated topic. I recall reading about pets in Japan: if they stopped importing pet food, they would need to devote 70% of their farm land to growing petfood.

    I love animals (dogs more than cats) but there is an economic and envuronmental cost.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    I love animals (dogs more than cats) but there is an economic and envuronmental cost.

    Can't recall the details but I've seen at least one reference to a cat being the equivalent of owning a Volkswagen, in terms of effective carbon emission/lifetime, and a big dog being like owning a 4WD. They're not environmentally efficient, and often not cheap. That Japanese petfood statistic is kind of terrifying, and kind of unsurprising. After all, how much of their land would they need for food, if they didn't import food for humans?

    But, then, this sort of analysis can be a bit like the causes of cancer; just sitting there breathing has some environmental cost (just like keeping on living raises your chances of getting cancer.) It's about finding a balance.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    I think it may be from the same source: a very provocative book by two academics who have a NZ connection: Brenda & Robert Vale, "Time to eat the dig? The real guide to sustainable living"

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    I think it may be from the same source: a very provocative book by two academics who have a NZ connection: Brenda & Robert Vale, "Time to eat the dog? The real guide to sustainable living"

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Geoff Lealand,

    Apologies for the double banger--blame it on fat fingers and the contrary nature of my iPod Touch.
    Nice to wake to soft, warm rain this morning.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2558 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    I think it may be from the same source: a very provocative book by two academics who have a NZ connection: Brenda & Robert Vale, "Time to eat the dig? The real guide to sustainable living"

    That sounds like what I was thinking of. How much of their research is accurate is, of course, another question entirely.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

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