Americas Cup thoughts

TNZ

It’s underway.

And Team New Zealand has gained a few points. By racing by themselves. Or against Luna Rosa who appear to be WAY behind technologically speaking.

I’ve been thinking about this a bit. I’ve come to the conclusion that I think the buildup and eventual competition for the Americas Cup is totally worth it.

Yes, there is a large amount of bullshit around rules, legal challenges, hissy fits and other childish behaviour. But at the end of the day, we get to see some pretty amazing sailing, on some pretty amazing boats. Boats that the likes of which have never been seen. Cutting edge nautical technology, sailed by the best sailors in the world.

40+ knots under sail? Astounding.

Yes, the NZ taxpayer has contributed some $36million towards this. I’m ok with it. If Team New Zealand bring the Americas Cup back to NZ, the ROI is huge. If they don’t? There’s still offshore branding going on.

I’m supporting Team New Zealand. Bring it home.

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School Holiday Fun – The Boy post

In School Holidays I do focus on the one-on-one time with my kids. I wrote about my day with my daughter yesterday, so here is a piece about my day with my son.

He’s 10, and likes tunnels and dark places and military installations.

We made a plan to go visit Waiheke Island in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf.

I decided to take my car across so we could explore properly. I picked him up at 7am in order to make the 8am Sealink ferry sailing from Half Moon Bay, Auckland.

It was a perfect weather day.

WaihekeWe arrived on the Island and then found a local store to stock up on snacks. And then we just drove. No maps. We just followed our noses and went down random roads. I have to say, there is a lot of beauty and seclusion on Waiheke.

After killing some time by looking at nature, we headed to our primary destination: Stony Batter. This is an historic gun emplacement on the western side of the Island. The appeal is the extensive network of tunnels, some 20m below ground. It’s really great seeing some progress towards restoration. Being able to roam them with torches whilst following a written guide made for a lot of fun. Especially when we’d turn the torch off and I’d hide around a corner. Yes, I do enjoy freaking my child out. I’m sure I should feel bad about that but I also think it’s important for one to grow in confidence in the dark.

AidanTunnel500px

It was about this time that my phone died so I couldn’t take any more photos. I’m still a bit annoyed about that as I do like to retain memories.

After leaving the tunnels and checking out the massive gun pits, we headed back to where we parked. We had a lot of fun exploring the boulders in the fields around the site. My son was adamant that Peter Jackson should have filmed The Hobbit there (yes, we did have to do a little re-enactment of ‘dwarves running across boulder-strewn fields avoiding Orcs on Wargs’).

We had lunch at the Beach Front Restaurant and had a nice chat with the owners. I love that people from the other side of the World are able to find and purchase a business online and then move here for the lifestyle.

We returned to the ferry terminal via all of the roads.

All in all, a great day. We had fun misbehaving and exploring. I can’t wait until the next time. (Of course, the next time is probably going to be Tree Adventures again because the sister had such a great time there).

School Holiday Fun – The Girl post

Today was a good day!

I collected my daughter early, and then we headed to the West of Auckland. Our ultimate destination being Tree Adventures, a wonderland of trees and climbing and challenges.

Miss 7 chose to do this. I was quite pleased as it is a seriously fun thing to do.

We arrived at our pre-booked time and had our safety briefing. The staff there are really good at what they do and are obviously a little sensitive about the well-being of their clients these days.

This was my daughters second time visiting the park. She has come so far in terms of confidence. It’s an absolute joy to see.

TreeAdventures_1

We navigated our way through the first four courses. She now needs to grow another 5cm before we can go back for higher and more challenging activities. This is entirely up to her.

Of course, the best thing about the end of each course is the glorious Flying Fox. A definite highlight.

GloriusFFAfter Tree Adventures, I decided to take her to Muriwai Beach on Auckland’s West Coast. Of general public interest is the Gannet colony, but she was more fascinated with black sand, jellyfish, little curvy shells and pumice. It was a great time of connection and joyous discovery. I loved being a kid again. I hope I never lose the ability to see the world through the eyes of someone seeing things for the first time. It’s so important!

Murawai_1 Murawai_2So, I’m happy. We had a wonderful day. A time of closeness and fun.

 

The Lifewise Big Sleepout 2013

Tonight is the night.

Many influential Kiwis will be outside, sleeping rough. They’re raising awareness about the issue of Homelessness here in Auckland, and raising funds to help tackle it.

It’s an emotionally and physically draining experience. I was unable to be a participant this year, but my heart is with them.

Lifewise does an amazing job in this area and needs our support.

It’s not too late to donate. You can do so here.

Also, I suggest following them on Twitter (@bigsleepout) to keep up with the events of the night and the fund-raising progress being made.

My best wishes to all.

Don’t let the bastards get you down

Sometimes in life the hits just keep on coming don’t they?

Whether you’re having to deal with crap in the office, or you have issues with family or loved ones, they all take a toll.

So how to deal with this? How to persevere and keep going? It’s not easy at all. Here are some tips I’ve worked out that help me.

1) ensure you’re rested and keep exercising.
2) ensure you’re eating well.
3) be open and communicate. Talk to the correct people in your life (i.e. those that love and support you, who have your back and don’t judge), you’ll learn that a problem shared is a problem halved.
4) eat the frog. Don’t put off addressing the issue.
5) don’t give up.

What other tips do you have that you’ve found useful in your life? Please share!