A PICTURE RECORDS A MOMENT IN TIME. It will never return, but we have the picture to cherish

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Hand water pump
This is an old hand water pump for pumping water up from a well. This stands outside the Cambridge, NZ, museum.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Amusing police sign
This amusing police sign was spotted in a shop window in Cambridge, New Zealand, a while back.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Speedboat on the Waikato River below Cambridge town, NZ
The Waikato River narrows here where it flows through Cambridge, which is not too far away from the Karapiro hydro dam and electricity generating station, the last one down stream of several generating hydro stations on the river.
This photo was taken when we explored Cambridge to find out how to get down to the river, which was not difficult, as we found out.
Cambridge town is about 20 minutes drive from Hamilton and is the next town upstream on the Waikato river from Hamilton.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas tree at the Base, Te Rapa
The Base outdoor shopping mall always have a huge Christmas tree at Christmas time. Here it is in all of it's splendour! It looks magnificent and I would estimate is about 30 feet tall.
Click on picture to see a larger image. Happy Christmastime.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wrought Ironwork
Wrought Iron on a building in Cambridge, New Zealand.
I liked the look of this as it added character to the building. This piece doesn't look too old and is made of cast iron. The original casting shape to make the mould would have been very ornate and probably made of wood.
The shape in the 'circle' near the corner of the moulding we used to call the "Prince of Wales Feathers."

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

White butterflies . I am a little perturbed this year at the lack of white butterflies around my garden. I shouldn't be as they lay eggs on my broccoli plants, the eggs turn into green caterpillars which then eat the leaves and get into the florets of the broccoli and are hard to remove before cooking, but though the white butterfly could be labeled a pest they can also be beneficial. You see, white butterflies also pollinate flowers which in turn form seeds that help the plants to propagate or form fruit such as tomatoes. . These butterflies I have found also to be very intelligent and learn from experience, such as avoiding harm when there is a risk to them. They will also assist another white butterflies which they think may be injured, and will fly off with them. . In my garden I do not worry unduly about them as I also have paper wasps that build honeycomb-type nests on my house or fences and they eat the butterfly caterpillars and help to keep their population down. But this is not the reason for the sudden drop in butterflies. . This year I have only seen one white butterfly around my garden, and am mystified as to why. I have phoned several organisations which I think could give a reason, without success. . As the start of our spring and summer has been so cold this year the lack of butterflies could be due to a climatic change as I have no other explanation. . I do hope that they increase in numbers as our summer hopefully warms up. We shall see. .

Monday, December 21, 2009

Yachting on the Hamilton Lake (Click on picture to enlarge)
The Hamilton Lake has the Maori name 'Rotoroa' and is very popular for small-yacht racing. This photo shows such a race. No prizes for guessing who is winning!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Victoria Street, Hamilton
This old photo was one which I took as a youngster over 50 years ago when the Railway line ran through the main street of Hamilton.
The lines can be seen in the road, and the railway warning signals, and this picture is looking across the lines towards the south of Victoria Street. Ward Street runs off to the right just behind the white van. The Railway Bridge over the Waikato River is to the left of the picture out of frame.
The railway lines now run underneath the road so as not to hinder traffic flow.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Bank building with the Waikato flag flying above
The Bank building, Hamilton.
The Bank of New Zealand opened for business in Hamilton in 1875. At that time this building was located in a very prominent location at the southern end of Victoria Street, the main street in the town, and Hood Street, just above Grantham Street which lead down to the river below the Victoria Bridge and the river landing where most of the activity of the early settlers took place - river transport boat landing and other activities.
This photo shows some of the ornate architecture of the building.
The Bank of New Zealand left the building in 1986. It was vacant for some years before it was refurbished in 1994 as a bar and café, which was appropriately called "The Bank." The outside of the building was painted this colour and later it was repainted grey and it remains an imposing building.
To prove it's importance to Hamilton's history it appears in many early photos of Hamilton and is very much an important part of our city.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tirau Public Relations Office
This building is one of two in Tirau, New Zealand which is built in the shape of animals. One is the shape of a sheep and is a wool shop (what else?) and this one is of a sheep dog and is the Tirau Public relations Office. The buildings and shapes are made by a local man out of corrogated iron.
Tirau has many corrogated iron signs also located around the town.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Beneath Hamilton's Victoria Bridge at night
Some of Hamilton's river bridges are lighted with electric lighting at night to give them some character in the evenings and they really do look good. This is the Victoria Bridge at the southern end of Victoria Street, which used to be the main street of town. Now the centre of the city has been changed and the street altered so that it is no longer the main street so far as traffic access is concerned. The Victoria bridge is still a major access bridge though and receives traffic from several approaches on the town side. This photo is taken from the town side.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Lake Taupo and Mountains
This is Lake Taupo, the biggest lake in the North Island of New Zealand, and the source of the Waikato River which runs north and to the sea just south and west of Auckland. Hamilton, my home town straddles the river about 2/3 way down on its journey to the ocean.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Alfie's first Christmas
It was a fair call as to how the baubles of our Christmas tree came to be lying on the floor that Christmas! Yes, our young cat Alfie, shown here caught in the act, was responsible. We didn't really mind though as it was his first Christmas and he either learned quickly not to do it or he grew bored of the activity. I can't remember now but suspect boredom was the reason.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Camera study, Taupo Community Centre
I took this photo because I was interested in the variety of structure angles and shapes.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Hamilton SPCA Kittens

Here is a short video taken of two of the three small black kittens we collected today from the SPCA to temporarily adopt until they are heavy enough to be desexed and permanently adopted to new homes.

We love cats and kittens and these little guys, two males and one female, are real fun to have. See the video above.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

An early New Zealand classroom mock-up
This is what classrooms looked like in my day - around the later-half of the 1940's and the 1950's. Of course the desks were only big enough for younger children.
I was interested to see the sample printed-alphabet on the blackboard.
This mock-up was done by the wives of local farmers for an antique farm machinery show in Hamilton last summer. Click to enlarge the photo.

Monday, November 30, 2009

This big fellow belongs to our younger son Rob who lives in an alpine region in the South Island. Once when Rob was tramping in the snow-covered mountains with Snowie he became disorientated in a sudden whiteout. He was able to phone his wife on his cell phone but it took a long while till searchers could find him. He and Snowie cuddled up together and the dog kept him warm, thus avoiding hypothermia, saving his life. Though Rob has a wife, Snowie is his best friend and companion.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sky Tower, Auckland, reflection
While being driven through the streets of Auckland by our son, I took this view of Auckland's main landmark, the Sky Tower.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Fordson Tractor
Here is an old Fordson tractor at the vintage Farm Machinery show held in Hamilton last summer. A great old machine, and still in working order. Local farmers had restored the many machines here to near-new condition. Click to enlarge photo.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Satsuma Mandarins
Last year the Satsuma Mandarin tree that I planted a few years ago finally had a bumper crop and the size were nearer to what they should be. Satsuma mandarins are larger than the original small ones, and mine have been about the size of a smallish orange. Somehow though the traditional mandarin flavour wasn't quite there, though the fruit was nice and juicy.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A place for everything... ....and everything in its place. My gardening tools, all hanging in labelled spaces.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Sunset from our window
Looking west at sunset can often give a wonderful view and is sometimes magical. Like this one. Click to enlarge the photo.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

An old record player
Those of us who may be over the hill and gaining speed on the other side should remember these machines.
They played fragile records made of some type of breakable plastic and were about 2 mm thick (nearly 3/16 inch), required winding up by hand to make them go, and the needles that picked up the music or sound track from the record grove had to be replaced with a new one at frequent intervals as they became blunt and spoiled the sound. There was only one groove that ran from the outside beginning of the track to the end near the record's centre.
By today's sound quality standards the reproduction left much to be desired, but we had good imagination in those days and were interested in the music, not the scratches or wows.
To me, those were the days!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Putaruru 'Memory Wall'
This is a part of a greater wall containing many tiles made by children and others with their various names or comments. I thought it was a grand idea, a place where the children can hopefully return to at a much later time in their lives and see their tile and recall memories. I hope that Putaruru will preserve this wall for many, many years to come. Click on the photo to enlarge the picture.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Patchwork Quilts (Click on picture to enlarge)
Colourful patchwork quilts hanging in a shop in Tokoroa. I couldn't resist photographing such bright hangings.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Maori Carving at Tokoroa.
One of the many Maori carvings and poles at Tokoroa.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

A milking cow photographed near the water reservoirs and lookout in Tokoroa, Waikato, NZ. (Click photo to enlarge)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Water Tank
While driving to another town recently I spotted this water tower by the road in the country. I have no information about it but thought it would make a good photographic subject. Perhaps the railway line ran nearby and this might have been to hold water for the steam engines that used to use the track. Now of course most engines are diesel, though over on our main North/South line the system is electrified and handles large electrically operated and often double-engines which pull long trains with lots of freight wagons.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Mural picture at Putaruru
This mural depicts a railway engine exiting a tunnel, and is painted on an old railway building in Putaruru.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Row, row, row your boat.... A Maori family out for a row on the Hamilton Lake - Lake Rotoroa. Click to enlarge picture.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Through the Hole
A picture of Waikato Hospital across the Hamilton Lake, framed by a hole in a brick wall nearby. Click to enlarge photo.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

New Zealand Pukeko This bird is a New Zealand native wading bird called the pukeko (pronounced poo-kek-oh). These birds are quite plentiful around the Hamilton Lake where they wade in the mud and also compete with the ducks for food when being fed by the public. In Hamilton I don't recall seeing them fly, but having travelled to other towns I have seen them fly and have even seen them roosting in trees. They appear to be a strange bird but I like them, with their red 'caps' and big brown eyes. They are non-aggressive and can even be friendly if you have a morsell of food to offer them. Click the picture to enlarge. They make nests in the lake reeds and raise their young there.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

First season's roses
As we head into summer here in New Zealand this flower display on our dining room table consists of our first roses of the season. The white rose is the highly perfumed Margaret Merrill, and the pink rose is a locally-bred one called Maggie Barrie, the name taken from a local TV and radio personality who used to specialise in gardening shows.
Both are from our garden.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

An Aquilegia flower from our garden
Aqualegias are also commonly known as the poor-man's orchid. It is a beautifully shaped flower and comes in a large variety of colour combinations. They are also perenial and take two seasons from planting to flower. (Click on photo to enlarge)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Red bush I admired the attractiveness of these bright red flowers of this bush at the Auckland Zoo. Click to enlarge.

Monday, November 2, 2009

A mother Coot (duck) feeding its baby
Spring time
Spring is a happy time of the year when new baby creatures are born.
Coots would be one of the best parenting birds around. They really care for their young by protecting them and feeding them. This photo was taken at the Hamilton lake last weekend.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween It's that time of year again, for ghouls and scary costumes. O-er! This group of Asian youngsters came to our home tonight and received treats of sweets. They were well behaved and respectful and it was our pleasure to have them visit. Happy Halloween everyone.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Giraffe Imagine being a giraffe with a sore throat! Wow! This fellow/girl was OK though, and seems happy enough living in the same enclosure with other giraffes and zebras at the Auckland Zoo. Click to enlarge.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Just a big pussycat!
Hi readers. I am back after a long break from blogging, and it's nice to be back.
This poor old fellow lives within a pride of lions at the Auckland Zoo, which we visited a short while ago. Doesn't he just look like a big pussy cat?
Yeah, right!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Watching the game . This is Molly, a kitten we temporarily adopted from the SPCA animal shelter. She was one of three amazing kittens who gave us a huge amount of pleasure while we had them. It was very hard to give them back when it was time for them to go to their permanent homes. . I want to inform my loyal readers here too that as from today I am taking a 'blog holiday' for a while. Thanks for your following and support. I hope to return later. - Dave .

Friday, April 10, 2009

Thursday, April 9, 2009

A local pilot with his tiger moth aeroplane with 'smoke' gave a short aerobatic display recently at a microlight meeting. As we live nearby I was able to get this photo.
Click to enlarge photo.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Squirrel Resting.
This came to me today as part of an e-mail, funny photos. I decided to share it here.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The Castle, Tirau
The castle above is really a Doll and Toy Museum. It sits on a hill overlooking the southern approach to Tirau township in the Waikato, south of Hamilton. The second picture shows a scene with the dolls arranged to make up a setting; ladies busy in a kitchen with the baby playing on the floor. There are many such sets with dolls representing a whole range of activities inside the Castle.
Jill, my wife, and I have visited the Castle at least three times and recommend this for anyone visiting Tirau, New Zealand. .

Friday, April 3, 2009

Stuffed Toy.
Jill likes stuffed toys. This is some sort of cat.
I sometimes take a liking to some of the stuffed toys as they often have amusing expressions, which says a lot for skills of the makers of the stuffed toys.
I remember as a kid we were taught at school how to make these, but I don't recall ever being very successful. Somehow I think I might try again one day though.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Bouncy castle for kiddies
Life's pretty active here at the moment with no time to blog or read blogs. I expect things will ease about the end of the week. I am not stopping, just trying to keep ahead of commitments. Catch you all soon. - Dave

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Fancy Balloon.
This balloon flew over our suburb this morning as a part of a balloon fiesta.
For more photos see my other blog site at www.cimba7200.blogspot.com .

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Green kiwifruit on the vine
The fruit, originally called Chinese gooseberries, were smaller fruit and were imported from China about the middle of last century. New Zealand horticulturists developed the plant and made them produce larger fruit. The green Kiwifruit, or 'kiwi' as it is commonly called in other countries is now also grown in Italy and a couple of other countries, but our horticulturists have now developed two other cultivars, one which has yellow fruit and is sweeter than the green one, and another variety which is much smaller and is more of a cocktail fruit and is more expensive.
In New Zealand home-grown kiwifuit is available for about six months. After that the industry imports Italian kiwifruit to give continuos supply to our market. Ours come on-stream about April.
To distinguish New Zealand kiwifruit from that of other countries they have been branded with a trade name - 'Zespri.' See their website here: http://www.zespri.com/zespri-kiwifruit.html

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Kiwi Sculpure.

This kiwi sculpture is located in a kiwifruit orchard in Te Puke, Bay of Plenty, NZ. it stands about the height of a person.

The kiwi is a native New Zealand flightless bird which exists in wild bushland and is rarely visible except in zoos or special displays. It is nocturnal.

The word 'kiwi' is also used to symbolise both the fruit of the kiwifruit, which is grown in NZ, and the people of New Zealand.

It is also one of our national emblems, the other being the native silver fern.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Small cottage amongst the trees, Te Kuiti, New Zealand


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Hamilton, Waikato, New Zealand
I live in Hamilton, the largest inland city in New Zealand, stretching across both sides of the Waikato River in the North Island, south of Auckland. Visit my other blog at: http://cimba7200.blogspot.com



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