vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

This is the last lot, until I spam you with photos of steam trains and Vilagrad Winery from our trip tomorrow.

River cruise and an Ent - 6 photos )

vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

This is the last lot, until I spam you with photos of steam trains and Vilagrad Winery from our trip tomorrow.

River cruise and an Ent - 6 photos )

vilakins: (holiday vila)

The Aratiatia Dam lets water flow for about 15 minutes every two hours during the day, turning a rocky chasm into impressive rapids. We liked this so much, we watched it three times. Unfortunately, I let Greg take most of the pictures, and he did almost all close-ups "because ones of the whole thing didn't look very impressive in the viewfinder". Well, no. It's a small viewfinder. He took over 50 and hardly any of them are any good. Sigh.

Therefore these are a mix of some I took earlier in the week and the best ones Greg took.

Aratiatia Rapids - 7 photos )

vilakins: (holiday vila)

The Aratiatia Dam lets water flow for about 15 minutes every two hours during the day, turning a rocky chasm into impressive rapids. We liked this so much, we watched it three times. Unfortunately, I let Greg take most of the pictures, and he did almost all close-ups "because ones of the whole thing didn't look very impressive in the viewfinder". Well, no. It's a small viewfinder. He took over 50 and hardly any of them are any good. Sigh.

Therefore these are a mix of some I took earlier in the week and the best ones Greg took.

Aratiatia Rapids - 7 photos )

vilakins: (art)

Yes, I've finally resized, cropped, uploaded, and captioned my Art Deco photos. There are 45 in the gallery, in two pages, but in the meantime, here's a little about Napier and Art Deco, and a selection of my favourites.

An earthquake devastated Napier in 1931 after which it was rebuilt in mostly Art Deco (with some Spanish Mission and Stripped Classical).

Art Deco symbolised the new spirit of the early 20th century, a period characterised by three important new ideas: the development of science, technology, and machines; the increasing freedom of women (and indeed everyone); and the overthrow of old conventions. It was also influenced by ancient cultures just being rediscovered, especially Egypt. The common motifs embody these ideas: geometric, angular shapes like ziggurats (stepping); symbols of power and speed like lightning flashes and zigzags, speedlines and streamlining; expressions of freedom like dancing women; the rising sun with its rays of hope; and motifs from ancient Egypt or Central America.

Here are the best ones, but Art Deco fans should go the the gallery, click on the first pic, and look at each one because of the Deco-ness and the informative captions I went to all the trouble of writing. :-P

Napier - 15 photos )

vilakins: (art)

Yes, I've finally resized, cropped, uploaded, and captioned my Art Deco photos. There are 45 in the gallery, in two pages, but in the meantime, here's a little about Napier and Art Deco, and a selection of my favourites.

An earthquake devastated Napier in 1931 after which it was rebuilt in mostly Art Deco (with some Spanish Mission and Stripped Classical).

Art Deco symbolised the new spirit of the early 20th century, a period characterised by three important new ideas: the development of science, technology, and machines; the increasing freedom of women (and indeed everyone); and the overthrow of old conventions. It was also influenced by ancient cultures just being rediscovered, especially Egypt. The common motifs embody these ideas: geometric, angular shapes like ziggurats (stepping); symbols of power and speed like lightning flashes and zigzags, speedlines and streamlining; expressions of freedom like dancing women; the rising sun with its rays of hope; and motifs from ancient Egypt or Central America.

Here are the best ones, but Art Deco fans should go the the gallery, click on the first pic, and look at each one because of the Deco-ness and the informative captions I went to all the trouble of writing. :-P

Napier - 15 photos )

vilakins: White tiger cub biting a plush tiger cub (cuteness)

Second lot of holiday pictures--cygnets!

.Cygnets - 6 photos )



And now there will be a break while I sort out the Art Deco ones. No more picspamming for a while. :-)

vilakins: White tiger cub biting a plush tiger cub (cuteness)

Second lot of holiday pictures--cygnets!

.Cygnets - 6 photos )



And now there will be a break while I sort out the Art Deco ones. No more picspamming for a while. :-)

vilakins: (holiday vila)

First lot of holiday pictures--a month after I came back, but I've been so busy at work.

.Vintage cars and Huka Falls - 5 pics )

vilakins: (holiday vila)

First lot of holiday pictures--a month after I came back, but I've been so busy at work.

.Vintage cars and Huka Falls - 5 pics )

Last day

21 Feb 2008 02:12 pm
vilakins: (holiday vila)

This is our last day of holiday; we leave tomorrow morning. :-( [consoles self with thought of seeing cats again] We saw the cygnets again yesterday and already their necks are longer and they’re ducking their heads under to get weeds instead of being provided with them by their parents.

Today we went back to the Aratiatia Dam to see the creation of the rapids from a lookout point further down the river. It's a stunning sight as the dam lets water go every two hours to roar and foam over the rocky river bed below. After that we did a river cruise from the dam to the Huka Falls which was excellent: beautiful and relaxing, and... Florrie the bullfighter was on board again! It turns out she and her companions are staying at The Village too--and in the unit we had last year! She's game for fun and went right up on the bow as we approached the falls. She was delighted to see the rapids afterwards as she didn't know about them, and for us they were well worth watching a third time.

A pretty good last day.

Last day

21 Feb 2008 02:12 pm
vilakins: (holiday vila)

This is our last day of holiday; we leave tomorrow morning. :-( [consoles self with thought of seeing cats again] We saw the cygnets again yesterday and already their necks are longer and they’re ducking their heads under to get weeds instead of being provided with them by their parents.

Today we went back to the Aratiatia Dam to see the creation of the rapids from a lookout point further down the river. It's a stunning sight as the dam lets water go every two hours to roar and foam over the rocky river bed below. After that we did a river cruise from the dam to the Huka Falls which was excellent: beautiful and relaxing, and... Florrie the bullfighter was on board again! It turns out she and her companions are staying at The Village too--and in the unit we had last year! She's game for fun and went right up on the bow as we approached the falls. She was delighted to see the rapids afterwards as she didn't know about them, and for us they were well worth watching a third time.

A pretty good last day.

vilakins: (danger)

One of the passengers on the steamboat lake cruise yesterday was an old lady of 91 who thoroughly enjoyed herself. I realized I was in the presence of a local celebrity when one of her companions mentioned that she had once fought a bull. She was Florrie of one of my favourite animated shorts, Pearl, Florrie, and the Bull which was the true story of 80-year-old twin sisters Pearl and Florrie who encountered an enraged bull on a country walk. Pearl was tossed, and Florrie grabbed it by the horns, threw her body over its face, and was carried for about 20 minutes while it tried to toss her off. Pearl ran for help and Florrie was rescued by a Maori boy armed with a broom. The twins both had broken arms in the same place but recovered well from them. Sadly, Florrie told us that Pearl died three years ago. I think Florrie was amazed that we’d seen this cult film (which won film festival awards), and afterwards I saw some of the overseas tourists having photos taken with her. Bless.

As for today, we drove right round Lake Taupo to see some lovely lake and volcano views.

vilakins: (danger)

One of the passengers on the steamboat lake cruise yesterday was an old lady of 91 who thoroughly enjoyed herself. I realized I was in the presence of a local celebrity when one of her companions mentioned that she had once fought a bull. She was Florrie of one of my favourite animated shorts, Pearl, Florrie, and the Bull which was the true story of 80-year-old twin sisters Pearl and Florrie who encountered an enraged bull on a country walk. Pearl was tossed, and Florrie grabbed it by the horns, threw her body over its face, and was carried for about 20 minutes while it tried to toss her off. Pearl ran for help and Florrie was rescued by a Maori boy armed with a broom. The twins both had broken arms in the same place but recovered well from them. Sadly, Florrie told us that Pearl died three years ago. I think Florrie was amazed that we’d seen this cult film (which won film festival awards), and afterwards I saw some of the overseas tourists having photos taken with her. Bless.

As for today, we drove right round Lake Taupo to see some lovely lake and volcano views.

Mixed

16 Feb 2008 01:36 pm
vilakins: (holiday vila)

It's too choppy to go out on the lake as we'd hoped (maybe tomorrow; the steamboat only runs on weekends) and we can't drive round the lake today either as there's a relay race on those roads. So I'm sitting in a kebab house waiting for my felafel.

We went to the Aratiatia Dam the other day for the opening of the pentstocks and the resulting rapids--wouldn't mind doing that again--and yesterday it was the museum. They have a cabinet full of the painstakingly revealed skeletons of leaves, flowers, and fruit done by a Victorian lady for the 1850 or 1851 exhibition. So delicate and strange.

Bad: we have no hot water. I hope they fix it today.

Good: The adorable Birman cat who visited us last year turned up again and was so affectionate and cute I was sorry to put her out when we left. I'm pretty sure she'll come back for more cuddles. Yes, I got photos. :-)

Mixed

16 Feb 2008 01:36 pm
vilakins: (holiday vila)

It's too choppy to go out on the lake as we'd hoped (maybe tomorrow; the steamboat only runs on weekends) and we can't drive round the lake today either as there's a relay race on those roads. So I'm sitting in a kebab house waiting for my felafel.

We went to the Aratiatia Dam the other day for the opening of the pentstocks and the resulting rapids--wouldn't mind doing that again--and yesterday it was the museum. They have a cabinet full of the painstakingly revealed skeletons of leaves, flowers, and fruit done by a Victorian lady for the 1850 or 1851 exhibition. So delicate and strange.

Bad: we have no hot water. I hope they fix it today.

Good: The adorable Birman cat who visited us last year turned up again and was so affectionate and cute I was sorry to put her out when we left. I'm pretty sure she'll come back for more cuddles. Yes, I got photos. :-)

vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

We went to a hot water beach about 2kms along the lake shore where there's geothermal heat coming up under the pebbly sand so that when your feet sink into it, it's hot. As you wade in, you get distinct warm and cold layers of water which is a very strange feeling.

Then we went to the basin near the source of the mighty Waikato river where we found two black swans with seven fluffy creamy cygnets. Soooo cute, like water-borne kittens! Yes, I got photos!

After lunch we went to Huka Falls which, if not high, were impressive with huge amounts of pale turquoise water thundering over them.

Tonight it's a meal out at an excellent local restaurant followed by SGA probably. Last night we saw Lost. Ooh, intriguing! Oh and the other day we saw three John Locke transports in a row. Full of cardboard boxes to pack Dharma ranch dressing in for the next food drop perhaps?

To my Facebook friends: I won't have flash till I get home so there will be no play of any sort till then.

vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

We went to a hot water beach about 2kms along the lake shore where there's geothermal heat coming up under the pebbly sand so that when your feet sink into it, it's hot. As you wade in, you get distinct warm and cold layers of water which is a very strange feeling.

Then we went to the basin near the source of the mighty Waikato river where we found two black swans with seven fluffy creamy cygnets. Soooo cute, like water-borne kittens! Yes, I got photos!

After lunch we went to Huka Falls which, if not high, were impressive with huge amounts of pale turquoise water thundering over them.

Tonight it's a meal out at an excellent local restaurant followed by SGA probably. Last night we saw Lost. Ooh, intriguing! Oh and the other day we saw three John Locke transports in a row. Full of cardboard boxes to pack Dharma ranch dressing in for the next food drop perhaps?

To my Facebook friends: I won't have flash till I get home so there will be no play of any sort till then.

vilakins: (holiday vila)

We went to Napier today and I took more pictures of Art Deco, Spanish Mission, and Stripped Classic buildings than you can shake a stick at. It was two hours drive each way on often windy single-lane roads with the occasional passing lane, and I'm knackered. esp after two hours wandering around in the heat and humidity on the walking tour. But it was amazing and I also bought some gorgeous Art Deco stuff in the shop. We've been watching our Jeeves and Wooster DVDs and wow, did they get the Art Deco right with all the ziggurats round the doors in Bertie's flat etc. I love that series.

[Edit:] I should add that Napier was destroyed in an earthquake and subsequent fire in the 30s which is why it's full of beautiful 30s architecture.

Why am I posting when I'm so tired? Because Greg has to do some stuff for his work so I'm here in the internet cafe while he does.

Other purchases so far include DVDs of Babylon 5:The Lost Tales and Ladyhawk. Oh and we went to see Death at a Funeral yesterday when it was raining: Alan Tudyk was brilliant as an English guy on hallucinogens. It was a blackly funny film with a great cast: I gladly rec it.

vilakins: (holiday vila)

We went to Napier today and I took more pictures of Art Deco, Spanish Mission, and Stripped Classic buildings than you can shake a stick at. It was two hours drive each way on often windy single-lane roads with the occasional passing lane, and I'm knackered. esp after two hours wandering around in the heat and humidity on the walking tour. But it was amazing and I also bought some gorgeous Art Deco stuff in the shop. We've been watching our Jeeves and Wooster DVDs and wow, did they get the Art Deco right with all the ziggurats round the doors in Bertie's flat etc. I love that series.

[Edit:] I should add that Napier was destroyed in an earthquake and subsequent fire in the 30s which is why it's full of beautiful 30s architecture.

Why am I posting when I'm so tired? Because Greg has to do some stuff for his work so I'm here in the internet cafe while he does.

Other purchases so far include DVDs of Babylon 5:The Lost Tales and Ladyhawk. Oh and we went to see Death at a Funeral yesterday when it was raining: Alan Tudyk was brilliant as an English guy on hallucinogens. It was a blackly funny film with a great cast: I gladly rec it.

vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

I've finally resized and loaded my holiday photos into a gallery. There are 44 pictures with explanations if you click on them; go have a look for:

  • The Village where we stayed
  • the nicest municipal logos :ive seen since Rome's wolf and SPQR
  • the Craters of the Moon thermal area
  • the cat who came to visit
  • aerial shots of volcanoes, crater lakes, and lahar
  • two boats and two retired eccentrics called Bate and Drake
  • very cool Maori cliff carvings
  • Greg and me on Segways
  • huge corrugated iron animalsg
  • cats back at home demonstrating two of their poses
Oh, all right, here's a very small sample.

Cat, crater lake, sunset, pirate, carving )

OK, now go and look at the rest! :-)

vilakins: (nikau (NZ!))

I've finally resized and loaded my holiday photos into a gallery. There are 44 pictures with explanations if you click on them; go have a look for:

  • The Village where we stayed
  • the nicest municipal logos :ive seen since Rome's wolf and SPQR
  • the Craters of the Moon thermal area
  • the cat who came to visit
  • aerial shots of volcanoes, crater lakes, and lahar
  • two boats and two retired eccentrics called Bate and Drake
  • very cool Maori cliff carvings
  • Greg and me on Segways
  • huge corrugated iron animalsg
  • cats back at home demonstrating two of their poses
Oh, all right, here's a very small sample.

Cat, crater lake, sunset, pirate, carving )

OK, now go and look at the rest! :-)

vilakins: (plush)

We're back, unpacked, and the cats are back too; in fact, I'm typing around Claudia. They do make up for holidays being over, and so does having broadband again - Internet, I missed you! All I had time for down there was answering comments and having a quick very slow flick through my flist. Now I'll be able to go back and read stories and look at photos and vids.

I'm relieved we didn't go up north this year. They got three months of rain in 36 hours, people and whole towns are cut off, and the motel by the Haruru Falls has mostly been swept away. :-( It was lucky no one was killed. And anyway, I have now discovered the delights of Taupo: lake, mountains, an excellent cinema, and considerably lower humidity due to being 340 m / 1000 ft above sea level. I'll definitely go back.

Claudia has gone off to check everything's as she left it, and now I've got Tessa, purring with contentment. :-)

vilakins: (plush)

We're back, unpacked, and the cats are back too; in fact, I'm typing around Claudia. They do make up for holidays being over, and so does having broadband again - Internet, I missed you! All I had time for down there was answering comments and having a quick very slow flick through my flist. Now I'll be able to go back and read stories and look at photos and vids.

I'm relieved we didn't go up north this year. They got three months of rain in 36 hours, people and whole towns are cut off, and the motel by the Haruru Falls has mostly been swept away. :-( It was lucky no one was killed. And anyway, I have now discovered the delights of Taupo: lake, mountains, an excellent cinema, and considerably lower humidity due to being 340 m / 1000 ft above sea level. I'll definitely go back.

Claudia has gone off to check everything's as she left it, and now I've got Tessa, purring with contentment. :-)

vilakins: (holiday vila)

It's been wet for two days so:

  • I went to see Hot Fuzz which was fun. Simon Pegg played a hot-shot cop who made his fellow police look so bad, they packed him off to a quiet little village. It seems a bit slow at first, but almost everything you see and hear is used in the climactic and explosive last half-hour or so.

  • I went back to the Creative Café and made two necklaces using some of their gorgeous glass beads. At last I'll have something to post in [livejournal.com profile] glarmaco this Monday.

  • We had two excellent dinners out. I now know where to eat and where not for our next visit to Taupo, because we'll be baaack.
I'm glad we didn't go up north this year because it's been cut off by heavy flooding today; some travellers will have to spend the night in their cars. Eep. We drive back to Auckland tomorrow morning (in other words, I do, because I do all the long-distance stuff) and I'm hoping it's cleared by then, though it hasn't been anywhere near that bad down here.

See you all tomorrow afternoon. :-)

vilakins: (holiday vila)

It's been wet for two days so:

  • I went to see Hot Fuzz which was fun. Simon Pegg played a hot-shot cop who made his fellow police look so bad, they packed him off to a quiet little village. It seems a bit slow at first, but almost everything you see and hear is used in the climactic and explosive last half-hour or so.

  • I went back to the Creative Café and made two necklaces using some of their gorgeous glass beads. At last I'll have something to post in [livejournal.com profile] glarmaco this Monday.

  • We had two excellent dinners out. I now know where to eat and where not for our next visit to Taupo, because we'll be baaack.
I'm glad we didn't go up north this year because it's been cut off by heavy flooding today; some travellers will have to spend the night in their cars. Eep. We drive back to Auckland tomorrow morning (in other words, I do, because I do all the long-distance stuff) and I'm hoping it's cleared by then, though it hasn't been anywhere near that bad down here.

See you all tomorrow afternoon. :-)

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