Sunday, January 10, 2010

Striving for Light

It’s Sunday and our last day here is Wednesday.  I can start to feel the tearing of life about the change.  My mind wanders more towards home and all that is there waiting for me.  We’re working hard to resist the tearing and the tug.  It’s hard though because we are feeling the deadline.  It’s less of living in the moment.  Many decisions have to consider the pressing future.  How much can we reasonably enjoy in this short period?  Are we going to be able to eat all this food?  Oooo – will all this fit in suitcases to take home????

After farms of sheep, cows and deer, here was a surprise.  You’ve heard of pink elephants – here you have pink sheep.  ;-0     Straight to you from Sheepworld in Warkworth.                                 imageWe were able to see more Kauri trees further north in Whangarei at the AH Reed Park.  This description was on one of the displays:

Te Kauri
O Te Iwi Tane Mahuta

Karui are a self supporting
life support system
they have
gardens in their branches
an extraordinary stalk
and delicate fibres down below

They start out as one of many
small flat seeds
travel 20 to 30 metres
from a round she-cone
in autumn on a good day

They give rise to two tiny leaves
striving for light
turning to gangly stalk
with many more
before a hundred years
of looking awkward

Kauri are a patient plant
they are shapely at a century
with a pyramid of leaves aloft
and branches that reach out
into the canopy before they move out
and take in lodgers

Insects in tens of millions over time
amoungst a mass of mosses and lichens
an entire worlds of epiphytes
and the likes of lizards and birds
dropping in the compost
or shedding with the bark or odd-branch
down around the ground

a mound of pukahu or thick mulch
stacked to a great height over hundreds of years
colonize in places by kauri grass astelia
a lily as a saving grace
for minding the roots

These are a few hundred years old unlike yesterday’s young ones.imageWe ended the day in Russell on an evening cruise in the Bay of Islands on the R Tucker Thompson.  She was built to train youth in Russell in the ways of sailing.  The proceeds of the trip go to funding the training.  These kids get to live on the boat for 7 days at a time.  This ship is 21 years old, has sailed 145,000 nautical miles over 7 oceans to visit 61 ports.  In those 21 years there have been 14 ship masters, 797 sail trainees and 67,500 passengers.  For this evening it was ours.                                                                    image We were invited to be part of the crew.  We both helped in hoisting a couple of the sails.  We did fly all of them that night – all 6…imageimageWe were then given freedom to explore the ship.  Here I am climbing up the rigging and James out on the bowspit.  image imageWe were having so much fun with the boat that I can honestly say that we didn’t take any pictures of the bay – we’ll do better tomorrow!  I think we’re still pretty much here despite all the thoughts on Wednesday.  We at least can still lose ourselves!
For more pics, try these:


K Spoering said...

OK, I just don't get these pink sheep. Do they dye the sheep? I've seen ads with colored sheep, but thought it was PhotoShop magic.

charlotte said...

Those sheep are amazing! Have they dyed whole animals, or is this a special pink mutation of keratin?

Jennifer said...

I'm not sure they even dyed the wool. The color was mostly even, but then there were areas were less intense - it almost looked like they were sprayed with those colored hair sprays. But yes the wool was colored in some way - not photoshopped!

Life Looms Large said...

Glad to see that the pink sheep are explained a bit. I was wondering too!

You guys are fearless climbing all over the place on that ship. I get pretty I really can't imagine doing that....although I'd rather risk the bowsprit than climb the rigging!!

Glad you had such a great trip and you were so good about blogging it!