Dashing in to the office before I have to dash off to The Big City. But I shall need a fortifying breakfast first…my car goes in for service (and, actually, that sort-of bothers me as it’s a new car. What can possibly need “servicing”?) and I’ll have an entire morning fill.

While I was tinkering over at the Dark Side, Jon remarked that it was a bit like watching “Tomorrow’s World” with all sorts of experiments taking place.Live.Before the very eyes. Hmm…

Back after lunch m’dears.

Well, that was a harrowing morning! Competing radios, blasting from, it seemed, every shop doorway. I sat in the library, reading for a while until a very noisy dispute broke out in the creche area.Little kids could shatter glass.

But my car was ready to go by the time I walked back down the street and the harrowing morning is behind me.

One of the (many)  jasmines, a Trachelospermum jasminoides, scrambling up a tamarind tree. And if you look closely you can see a thick stem just behind the flower. That’s a vanilla orchid, also racing up the tamarind’s trunk.

One of many flower buds on a Syzygium wilsonii. I stopped counting after twenty-something!

And some cheerful sunflowers I bought when I collected Sporran from the vet where she’d been for some dental work.

That’s enough for now…domestic duties beckon.



2005_0204kittens0001…when she was just a little pippin.

Now, almost two years old and still very  “girly” compared to her rumbunctious sister. And racing about on the artificial hip with (mostly) no problem.

But yesterday…I took her to see Dr.D.

Sporran here:  this is about me so I’ll tell the story,OK?

Dinah thought I was “not very well” so she stuffed me into that nasty box-with-the-locks and would not even give me a chance to explain that I was “really alright. Sort-of…”

Anyway, Dr. D. (who is a real cuddle man!) squeezed my tummy (!) and then he told Dinah that “this needle is a godsend as it delivers a 14 day dose so we don’t have to get 14 pills down them.”

And then he picked up this needle.

It was ENORMOUS! And he jabbed it into me!

Well, maybe I don’t need to have a pill every day, but man! if they come at me again with this needle I’ll show them my needles. I have a full working set. And don’t you forget it, mister!

Dinah: We’re hoping (and so far, so good) the antibiotic will do the trick. Chronic cystitis would be miserable for anyone and Sporran’s had more than enough drama already in her short life.

Why? How? Life is as much a lottery for cats as for us. She’s on a good (make that very good!) diet, as are the others. And I don’t feed her exclusively on dry biscuits. Hell! They fare better than us some days!

Anyway, today she is much perkier and has already chased several skinks, butterflies and her sister.

Dinah is muttering something  about dashing away with a smoothing iron. Personally, I think she ought to be getting dinner sorted, but sometimes human are difficult to train.

kitten sketch _0001

<This is me!

And this is me and her   >   kitten sketch _0002

(And she’s drawn us too fat!)

And we are black! says Geiger



Yesterday, I jumped to the top of a closet, chased the dust bunnies that live up there, then leapt down and scampered away.The bipeds were impressed that I didn’t limp. (Bipeds are easily amused and impressed.)

2008_1124sporran0002Here, I demonstrate my flexibility, using the broken leg to scratch. See that mop? Well, it annoyed me, so I attacked it. I won!

It can get pretty noisy around here, what with those stupid dogs next door and children yelling. But the other night, we heard a different noise. Lots of popping and loud bangs.Man! Our ears were twitchin’ fierce. Dinah grabbed her camera and ran outside.


For this???

Apparently, it’s called fireworks and there was rather a lot of it, down at the beach. We thought it was hardly worth the bother!

Dinah says I can finish this later;she wants to go somewhere to look at paintings…


Well, Sporran has wandered off so I might as well add my bit.

Spent an enjoyable day yesterday, cruising around in my air-conditioned car with a friend and taking in some near-local art shows.

One was a little less “local” than intended – we took a wrong turn and had to drive a fair distance up the steep range before I found somewhere to turn ’round. Oh well…it was an interesting “extra!”

OK…all you folks in the Arctic zone might want to skip this…

You’ll notice I highlighted  the bit about my air-conditioned car? Well, believe me, if I did not have that facility I would not have ventured out yesterday. The official reading was 31 deg Celsius, but inland (where we were) it must have been several degrees higher. And with a seering northerly. Have I mentioned that I do not like high temperatures?


This tangle of vines on a palm in front of the living room obscures my view of…


…this. Cassia fistula

2008_1118pbankxmas0024Ahh! But when all those buds open … The poor tree is somewhat misshapen as the huge Royal Palm fronds  “lean” on its branches when they drop. And at around 15 to 20 feet from the ground and weighing a lot more than moi…moi is not inclined to scramble up a wobbly ladder to remove them.

This Adenium obesum rewarded me with flowers this year, after sulking last year when something with BIG CLUMSY FEET flattened it.


Locals call it “Desert Rose.” Another case of confusing common nomenclature as I know Desert Roses as that crystal structure you find in…well, in deserts.

This is a web picture of a Saharan “desert rose.”

Actually, that’s gypsum and if my shaky third form chemistry holds up, I think it’s something like this: Ca SO4 2H2O. But wiki might be more accurate!

My white one has sisters in red and pink.

UPDATE 24 hours later… the flowers were stripped by the hot, fierce wind that has not abated for 3 days… don’t even ask what this did to the lettuces!

I still have those dust bunnies to deal with


Zorb® Attack Pack (2 x Single Zorb rides)web picture

I was so looking forward to zorbing … I am sure I saw a TV “Six Degrees” programme that showed  someone zorbing in the Auckland Domain. But I couldn’t find a ‘phone number  and the tour guides listed only the Rotorua site for zorbing. Bah!

And the one day we had the opportunity to go to Devonport by ferry was a stinker so a ferry ride, delight of childhood, was a non-starter! Still, I did manage to mooch around the harbour , drooling at some of the “prettty toys.”

And, despite my vow to “go north” on this trip, we still didn’t make it as far north as Kawakawa, home of the fabulous Hundertwasser toilets. However, I did manage to find a postcard of them, but I mailed it to a blogger in Canada. Perhaps, if you ask nicely via her comments, she might post a picture…

Something else I most definitely did NOT do was go to the top of that bloody “hypodermic syringe”

although we did wander around the lower floors, where (hundreds of) people were feeding coins into poker machines and more people were queuing to go into the deep, dark salons to play roulette and whatever other money-eating games were on offer.

To me, there is nothing “thrilling” about betting my hard-earned cash that someone else will bet even more cash on an outside straight… a bigger thrill would be the bungee jump from the platform near the top of this tower. We could see the straps dangling and watched for a while to see if anyone was brave enough to jump. No takers! Too windy, probably.

When a sudden squall lashed us we ducked into the foyer of Brookfields’ office block and I stayed, after the shower passed, to have a good look at a wonderful installation, by Carole Shepheard.  (Googling her name will show several links)

This is only one panel.

And I think the “gallery planets” must have been mis-aligned as Auckland’s main gallery was closed for refurbishment and another show I’d wanted to see was not open when I had the time free. Oh, well, we did cruise through some small galleries and boutiques which featured originals and hand-made articles…

So…not so much tripping about this time, but the reason was…

A rather significant birthday. Yes, we partied!


And a brief footnote on Sporran… madame is more than a little ticked-off at having to stay indoors, but she’s doing well and thanks all of you for asking.



Less than 24 hours after her surgery we brought her home. Limping (understandable!) and a bit wobbly, but  “perfectly okay to go outside, whatever the Vet said, so open that door, please.

I clipped a leash on and stayed with her and she had a mooch around the back garden then I brought her back indoors. Well, someone has to get some lunch!

Sporran says she’ll come visiting her blogfriends and say thankyou for the good wishes.

Sporran, ever the daring, climb anything adventurer…

The “how” is, and will probably remain, a mystery. The “when” was some time yesterday morning. The “result” is a broken femur tip. And the “remedy” is arthroplasty. Doctor Vet will probably want to keep her in hospital for the weekend.

In the meantime, her legal aid is filing a compensation claim which, apparently, includes the word “salmon” in several clauses…

Stay tuned, folks…

*Let’s just wait til we’ve seen Doctor Vet’s “claim” shall we?