Delphiniums, family and fun

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

And Another Day

Last Saturday Janice and I, Robert and Jennifer drove to Napier to stay with Jan and David Brock and see Brocky perform in a professional production of Roger Hall's new play "Four Flat Whites in Italy". True to expectations it was a great laugh and a wonderfult study in human relations - as stressed by travelling together. Brocky was magnificent.

After the show we were given the tour of the theatre and joined the party back stage. It was all a great experience. Unfortunately we weren't able to watch more than the first half of the recorded rugby match between NZ and Wales before falling asleep. The morning told us the inevitable result as NZ won by a landslide.

Sunday was a leisurely day....after spending a couple of hours helping the production team "Pack Out" of the theatre (this wasn't in the contract Brocky). After a great lunch out we drove sedately home to Wanganui via a tree nursery and coffee shop.

Of course after all the indolence of the weekend I just had to have a run on Monday and after all the careful build up of the past three weeks a calf muscle just had to decide to give up the ghost after about 4k, in the rain, leaving me to walk, nay, hobble home. Arrrggghhh!!!!!!!!!

That was two days ago. Back to biking tomorrow I think.


Lots of good thinking and planning work done today. Plus I bought a great blue spiky wig for a Rotary changeover party. Cool.



Thursday, June 17, 2010

What a difference a day makes

Yesterday was one of those days where almost everything went wrong. Today was one of those days where almost everything went right. No, I'm not going to speculate about tomorrow.

Because things have gone well there isn't much to blog about as I've spent most of the day in front of my pc writing strategic plans and project management type stuff for the business - all deadly boring unless you are involved, when it becomes extremely exciting.

Actually it became so exciting that I completely forgot about an important Rotary meeting I should have attended tonight and by the time I rang they were well into business and it was too late for me to promote some things I needed to, but there will be time later, hopefully. Whoops.

Of course by 3pm today I was ready for a break so I did another bike ride round my 40 minute circuit and was delighted to find that, even though it was a good training run, I was absolutely not puffed at the end and felt like I could do it again, but was a good boy and returned for more work.

Oh, the ploughing did get done yesterday and very well too.

Enough for today



Wednesday, June 16, 2010

One of Those Days

Today was always going to be something of a washout as far as work was concerned but I really did want to get at least half a day of useful work done. Ha!

After a dentist appointment at 8:30am I had about an hour down time in town before a massage at 10. Nothing much I could do about that as I needed the dental check-up and wanted the massage. And a cup of coffee in between and an errand or two needed doing as well. Back home by 11:15 and at 11:30 I hear sounds up at the nursery (all staff away today) so I investigate and find my neighbour has been to do a ploughing job but has broken the plough (well, a bolt anyway) and had to go back for a repair job.

Back home I tidy emails etc until lunchtime after which I can get on with writing some business strategy stuff and check up on how we are doing against "The Plan" This will take me until 3pm and time for a run - I wish! The only problem with this strategy was that after assembling all the hard documents I needed and moving to the computer files I find that they are now archived. That's ok. No it isn't. I can't access the exterior hard drive for the backup - neither can Janice on her pc.

Much gnashing of teeth. I decide to go for a run.
The run was good.

The hard drive is still inaccessible.

I putter around while Janice addresses the computer problem and finds that the back-up drive is accessible from the laptop. Phew!
For various reasons (other symptoms too) we reach the conclusion that Janice's pc, now ageing but virus free, just isn't coping any more. The back-up drive is also ageing so we decide to back up some files from the backup drive to the laptop. I decide to call work off for the day and get dinner ready. I can hear a tractor ploughing.

We decide to investigate a new pc for Janice.

Dinner was nice but the pantry is bare so J and I have a quiet shop for groceries in town, come home, read and hope that tomorrow delivers what today did not.

I'll let you know.

Items achieved: dental check up; massage; ploughing (not yet checked); a few Emails answered; mail and business housekeeping dealt with: some advertising sorted; 5.5krun; grocery shopping; blog

Monday, June 14, 2010

In The Long Run

Sorry no pics, just links, try following them.

A few years ago I kept fit by working outside in our delphinium nursery but since then, due to allergy and the commitments of an expanding business, I've gradually reduced my time in the nursery until it is now virtually nil and my fitness has suffered.

I first started riding in 2007 and continued this sporadically until March 2009 when I eased off and then stopped.

On 7th April this year I decided that I had to start getting fit again. That meant getting on my bike, which I enjoy, doing some hard pedalling, which I enjoy and learning to take it slowly, which I do not enjoy. As part of the reason I stopped before was because of continued small injuries I was, and am still, really determined to ease back in to this gradually and properly.

So, from April 7th when I began with really slow paced riding over just 9k until May 18th, I gradually built up to 15k at a moderate, but definitely not speedy pace. It was more difficult than I imagined. I must be getting older than I realise although at 62 surely I should not be significantly slower than at 58? Then, maybe I was really unfit at the start. Whatever the reason, it was hard work.

The period from May 18th to June 3rd Janice and I were away from home, first visiting relations in Auckland and then our grandchildren in Sydney, Australia. It was while we were away in Sydney that I became even more determined to crack this fitness thing and started walking very briskly for 6 to 10k each day. It worked and by June 3rd I needed to jog a little to work up any sweat at all.

Now, I've never really jogged before, not for any length of time. The reason for this is that whenever I reached about my 4th run I would pull a calf muscle - always, no exceptions. So this time I was very cautious and took advice from my daughter Sarah, who runs, and my physio, who has had a career running. Well, the gist is that I'd been starting off too quickly and expecting to, as they say, run before I could walk. So I tried again.

It is now June 14th and I've had six runs and two bike rides in the last ten days and am now able to jog 7k without even a twinge from legs. Please let this continue. Please let me be patient and not run too quickly or to far.

The goal is to run with Sarah in the Wanganui half marathon in December, and in the process, get fit. Wish me luck!

I've no idea if you will be able to see this but it does seem to work.

Let me know!



Sunday, June 13, 2010

Back to it

A couple of weeks ago Janice and I visited our daughter, Nadeeka, in Sydney, where she lives with David and their three young boys. We visited them too! We had a wonderfully relaxing time, enjoyed everyone's company, renewed friendships we made last year and generally enjoyed the opportunity to see this particular section of our family and enjoy an almost totally peaceful week....well, they do have 3 boys you know. You can meet Nadeeka and family here

The week before this we had spent time in Auckland visiting Janice's family, burying Janice's mother's ashes and saying goodbye to her parent's home which was being sold as Jim is moving into a managed apartment. Thus, the week in Sydney reconnecting with a younger end of our family was well timed too.

It was a real joy to see that Nadeeka, having made the decision to give up paid work in favour of running the household and always being home for the kids, was spending some of her "free time" (ha!) making a magnificent fist of growing her own vegetables, and on so small an area too. She is using organic principles and producing a wide variety of vegetables and herbs which she uses in her cooking. She is using every available space too. I was hugely impressed. So impressed that now I'm home I'm determined to make much more use of our own garden. Sure, I grow quite a few veges and we have fruit from the house orchard, but I've never really "done it properly", at least not in the past couple of decades or so.

So yesterday I made a start by digging trenches, burying compost and planting a few plants. The dog got a couple but that's another story. See below.

And the garden is growing. Below are paperwhites bursting into flower and some fungi that Jennifer gave me for my birthday last month!

Being away also helped my fitness. Some weeks ago I'd resurrected my bike and started riding again but, having decided not to take that to Sydney, had to walk for exercise, which I did every day, and not just to the shops either. By the end of the week I was briskly walking about 8k around the rolling Cherrybrook suburbs and finding that I needed to run to work up any sort of a sweat. So now I'm doing something I've never done before. I'm running. Furthermore I have a target, having promised our daughter Sarah that I'll run a half marathon with her....just as soon as I'm able. Year Right! Whew!

So, before this gets too long I think I'll go and have a rest.