Tuesday, December 19, 2006

What a day!! God is good!

Today started like usual with me at the computer checking emails and working out my plan of action for the day. I was looking at my list of businesses I had asked for sponsorship and was thinking I would not do any more work this week on that. I just had to pick up 2 profiles from companies I hadn't yet heard back from. I was waiting for a lady to come and look at my TV and she had sounded like she was pretty keen so I was happy about that. Well then God seemed to kick a whole series of events into action! My phone rang and a guy said I had emailed him yesterday asking for sponsorship. He asked if I had got any yet. When I said no he said "I'll do it"!!! I was taken aback and then he said "I'll do the whole lot!" I wanted to jump up and down and then I heard a voice at the front door and knew the lady was here to see the TV. I was chatting to Bella on MSN and trying to type to tell her we had sponsorship all at the same time! I walked to the front door so they could see I was on the phone. Anyway then the lady bought my TV, then I rang Bella and Anna to tell them all about it. Anna was crying on the phone!! So we began a hectic day of talking to the printshop, visiting the sponsor company-Biopaints, buying clothing, getting the logo from the design company and taking it all to the print shop- Imagegear, and praying they will get it printed this week! At one stage I had parked my car in Trafalger St and completely forgot about paying for parking. I got back to my car to find someone had put their unused ticket under my window wipers and I still had 20 minutes left! In the Warehouse I needed 10 cents to not have to break a $20 note and a lady in the next que just pulled out 10 cents and said "Merry Christmas!"
Back home Bella and Anna started on my extreme makeover. We had already bought me jandals (I lost my last pair in April and hadn't replaced them) so they started by dying my hair dark blonde. Then they waxed and plucked my eyebrows. Next was lighter streaks for my hair and then hair removal cream on my chest! After I washed all that out in the shower I was disturbed to find my hair had gone orange! In the middle of all this drama my phone rang and it was my brother Tim in Brisbane phoning to say that HP were going to replace my laptop with a brand new one and he should be posting it tomorrow!! I told him I was having a great day and said we had got sponsorship. He said he had been thinking about sponsoring and offered to build the girls a free website! So it's not online yet but it will be www.annabellanz.com. We were all again excited and exclaimed that God was indeed good and wow has He had a party with us today! Bring on tomorrow!! We are so excited as now we can focus on playing beach and not worry about the other stuff. Anna and Bella are now in the top 20 women in NZ and I am excited to see what they can do on the tour! Last Sunday we had the Brightwater Classic, the girls won and I came second in the mens with Cory Schroder. I think I am playing my best beach volleyball ever right now.
I leave Nelson on boxing day for the tour and don't plan to come back before heading to the USA beginning of Feb depending on the visa. So its a busy pack up week for me. I finished work last week and its so nice not to be working this last week here.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Vanuatu--Nov 2006

Saturday 25th
Flew to Auckland arriving 6pm. Jennie Tiers met us and took us to our hotel and then out for dinner. Not a lot of sleep as up at 4:30am to go to airport.
Sunday 26th
Flew to Port Vila-3 hours. Hot and humid! Debbie and Troy met us and Troy took us to Mele Village. This is the largest village in the whole of Vanuatu--3000 people. Here we stay in the chiefs area in a huge house which is very clean and has electricity. Much flasher than the rest of the houses in the village. We are treated like royalty! Awesome meals are prepared for us.
Troy is an ex MLB player from Texas (played for Oakland Raiders) and now owns Erakor Island Resort. After settling in for an hour another American-Doug-picks us up in his big Chevy Suburban and drives us to a resort called Club Ippique. We spend the afternoon here having a beach vball fundraiser. So we play beach and east a BBQ and swim in the lagoon. It rained real heavy tropical showers too. Meet a lot of ex-pats. Then back to Mele for a cold shower (no hot water at all) and dinner. Met Sara from USA is working with the Peace Corp on the island fo Pentecost. She's really cool and can speak the local gibberish-Bislama (a mixture of bad English and French!) so makes a great guide! It gets dark at like 7pm and light at 5am so we go to bed at like 9am.
Monday 27th
Awaken by roosters at 5:20am. I doze off some until Anna and Bella wake me again at about 7am. Its hot and sunny already so up for a cold shower and off to breakfast. French toast and bread and jam and sweet ripe bananas. After breakfast we catch the bus into town. Buses are just Toyota Hiace vans that work kinda like taxis but with set fares. Danny is our driver-he plays soccer for Mele and knows Batram, Clifford and Mike Fifi! Sara shows us around Port Vila, its much hotter and sunnier and stickier today! After lunch at a cafe (where Anna and Bella find grubs crawling in their muesli!) we go on a ferry across to an island about 400 metres of the mainland. Its Irariki Island Resort. Here we get fruit punch and swim in the pool and live it up for the afternoon. 4pm and Danny picks us up again and takes us back to the village. We meet other athletes arriving and then have an official welcoming ceremony. We are given lays to wear and the chief makes a speech, we drink Kava (yuk!) and have a huge meal. The hut we eat in is all decorated and again we are treated like royalty. 9pm-another cold shower and off to bed with the fan on full. I can see 2 geckos on my ceiling tonite!
Tuesday 28
Woken at 2:30 am by roosters crowing again! They crow all day and night--weird! Today me and the girls went to Breakers resort and swam and lay out again. It has a really nice pool and and a white sandy beach. I walk further down the beach to where they are diggin out sand for the new beach vball courts in town. They had got the loader stuck so I had a go but got it stuck too! The beach had plenty of rubbish on it--cans right down by the waters edge! Everywhere we went there was rubbish--no one seemed to care about rubbish bins. Back to town for lunch and Anna threw up in a garden on the main street! Anna and Bella went home to rest and I hung out with Sara.
Wednesday 29
Tournament sposed to start today! But the sand is still not spread on the new courts. The loader driver has no idea what we want so finally they let me in the loader and I spread the sand, we get the nets up and the Minister of Sports officially opens it. Got an interesting picture of Vanuatu time and how things work or don't work today. Sara decides to come over to NZ for our pro tour and Ory (my Israeli partner) is thinking about it too. Had a decent earthquake tonite! Also met McKenzie today-real name Mehlon?
Thursday 30
Girls played today-lost 1 won 1. Anna struggled with no energy from being sick. Real hot today but got more rain too. Weather changes real quickly. Spent $71 NZ on juice, powerade, muesli bars, chocolate and giant snakes-prob about $30 worth back in NZ! Ory took us out to dinner at the Waterfront--I had real nice BBQ ribs! Mehlon and Kelion hang out with us more--they are twins-12 years old and really good at volleyball. Real cute cool kids and really bright and fun.
Friday 1 December
Left the village today. I played 2 games with Ory winning both to advance straight to the semis. Went to Mele Cascades-- a nice waterfalls. Then moved to our new accommodation Erakor Island Resort. This is a really nice resort--just take a short ferry ride across to it. We stay in a dorm style room block. Sara comes over for dinner at the restaurant which overlooks the lagoon and is very nice. Early to bed but I'm starting to get the runs and so is Bella!
Saturday 2
Still got runs but feel OK so eat a good breakfast. Girls feel much better too. Semis and the girls play first but I need a toilet so I miss most of their first set. They don't play so well and lose. Then I play and win first set before my stomach begins to feel really bad. I end up hardly being able to move and lose the game. Then I collapse on the ground with pain and finally make my way to a disgusting toilet at the soccer stadium where I stay for about 30 minutes! I feel very weak and sick but after drinking water and resting begin to feel ok again. Watch all the finals--there are some very good men's teams here. Back to Erakor for showers before the awards presentation at the Wild Pig Bar. I win best male setter and Bella wins best female setter. Then we go to Shooters on back of Ory's Hilux. Everyone just climbs on the back of trucks day or night and drive like crazy around the city. Ory can be a maniac driver! There is no speed limits posted anywhere and road rules are look out for yourself! We only saw 1 police vehicle our whole time there and that was us passing it in an 11 seater Hiace with 14 people in it not wearing any seatbelts! Shooters was no good so took Anna, Bella and Darryn (Aussie ref) back to Erakor ferry and then Ory, me, Sara and her friend Melissa went to a house party. Mostly frenchies there and Troy and some others. Then we all decided to go to Yellow Submarine bar in town. Walked up the hill to Ory's truck where we saw a young guy lurking about. Looked suspicious so as he walked off I yelled out "Oy". He ran off and then we realized Ory's truck window was smashed and they had tried to remove the stereo. I chased but he had disappeared already. Went to town and danced in this club. Again most there were French and a lot of the guys either were gay or appeared gay. I wasn't that comfortable in there!! One guy in particular was quite disturbing--about mid 40's and wearing tight as jeans pulled right up with t-shirt tucked in and his dance moves just made us laugh and then feel sick!! He only seemed to want to dance with other men too. Freaky. Got back to Erakor Island about 4am-lucky the ferry runs 24 hours.
Sunday 3rd.
7am and Bella wakes me--I've had about 3 hours sleep. Pack up and off to the airport to fly home. It's been an incredible week and I really hope to return next year for some more "island time". I would love to go to some outer islands and see more of this country.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Beach vball story in the Nelson Mail

Check out the main sports story in todays Nelson Mail! Click on the title above.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

My 3rd cousin Daisy from England came to visit for 3 days on her round the world trip. She brought 2 of her friends with her, from left is Rose, Sam, Daisy and me. It was great to find another cousin!
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Sunday, September 24, 2006

The winning team!

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WE WON!! We are promoted to Mainland League for 2007! We were so pumped yesterday as we beat Avon 3-1 in the home leg of our promotion/relegation series. Last Friday we travelled down to Christchurch again for the first game against Avon on Saturday which we lost 0-1. Their ground was bumpy and very small and there was a very strong wind. Really hard to play on. We had a lot of chances early that hit the post or got cleared off the line. I only played about 4 mins at the end. Yesterday was another tight, close game. Battram scored an absolute stunner against the run of play about 30 mins into the game so it was 1-0 at half time. Batty scored again not long into the second half so we led 2-0 which was enough for us to win as last weeks goal counted for them. Then they scored off a corner--the same way they scored their goal in Christchurch. 2-1 and looking like extra time. I got subbed on for Batty with about 20 mins to go and was really hopin to score the winner!! I put in a good cross to Mike Fifi that went just over his head in front of goal. Then in the 90th min, Fifi chased a ball and managed to cross it back from right on the line across the keeper and Jimmy Lattimore somehow deflected it in as he was diving across the goal! We were ecstatic and after a long 2 mins of injury time we all screamed and jumped and hugged and went crazy! Their was a big crowd their and they were all yelling for us too. The ground looked awesome, the grass was perfect and smooth and it was a perfect Nelson day! I will post a pic later. We then had a pig on a spit and our prizegiving and kept celebrating into the nite! Its been a huge year in our club and we have made history by challenging for this and winning the promotion. There is now 2 teams from Nelson in this league and 6 from Christchurch. I have loved playing in this team and although havent got much game time lately its still been an incredible journey and yesterday felt so good to get out there to play firstly and then to win!
So its been a pretty busy month!! Last Sunday I also moved out of Teapot Valley Camp and am now living with my uncle and aunty again. Its nice to be in a house again and have meals cooked! I plan to live here for the next 3 months.

Monday, September 11, 2006

The week in review

Last Monday at 6:15 I got picked up for work and we drove to Golden Bay (90 mins) to work on a house at Pohara Beach. The owner has a bach (cottage) there so we stayed over. It was a fun job to work on. I cooked up dinner for everyone on Monday nite and also cooked panckaes for breakfast Tuesday. I came back home for soccer training Tues nite and went back to Golden Bay Wednesday morning. Did 2 more long days coming back for training again Thursday night.6:20 friday morning Clint and Alice picked me and took me to the airport. All the computers were down so check in was done manually meaning delays but my friend Anna made me a free chai latte at the cafe and I managed to get a direct flight to Auckland rather than stopping in Wellington. Had a nice flight up. Got a shuttle into Auckland City where we had a hotel booked. Met Kate and Mark there. The lady in reception told us it was 1.5 - 2 stars!!! It was really disgusting. Anyway we got changed and then a 10 minute walk up the street got us to St Pauls church. Cam and Chloe were married in a simple ceremony at 1:30pm and then we celebrated with champagne and wedding cake. A few hours break and then at 5:30 we went to Mantells- a cool venue in Mt Eden where we had the most sumptuous meal! The salmon and beef were so nice. Some great speeches were made-Gapesy as best man told some hilarious stories and read an email that Cam had written which was priceless!! "We are soo cool"!! Back to the hotel for some much needed sleep.

Saturday 9:15am arise and try out the shower. Got face scalded as cold water came and went.

9:45am Mum and Dad picked me up and we went to Parnell for breakfast to celebrate mums birthday. Happy Birthday Mum!! My sister and her husband and my niece and nephew joined us too.

11:30am Mum and Dad took me to the airport.

1pm Flight to Christhchurch. Fell asleep.

2:30pm Stew met me at the airport and took me the team motel.

4pm Light training run at St Bedes School. freezing cold--about 10 deg Celsius.

8pm Dinner at a local restaurant. Buffet all you can eat!

11pm lights out

Sunday sleep in and then rise and relax

11am check out of motel and drive to English Park. Watch some of the curtainraiser.

1pm our game kicked off and Mike fiff scored inside 1 minute!! 2 goals in the first 10 mins and 3 by halftime. I only got to play the last 8 mins but almost scored when I got the ball past the keeper only to have a defender clear it off the line. We won 3-1 meaning we sang in the showers and were very happy! After food and speeches we had a long slow ride home in the vans arriving home about 11:30pm very tired but after a fun successful weekend. But before bed I managed to watch a replay of Maria Sharapova win the US Open.

2 more sleeps to get my licence back and looking forward to our next soccer game--back in Christchurch again on Saturday.

Friday, September 01, 2006


Well I haven't written much on here lately--maybe thats a change I should make! Today was hot! Even got the aircon on in our smoko room on the building site at lunchtime. Our building is going pretty slow due to an engineer interfering but it should be speeding up next week. We are building a pretty big warehouse which will be divided up into many storage units of varying sizes. It will be known as Storageworld! Next week we will spend 2 days in Golden Bay working on a real nice beach house that the company is also building. I don't love my job but thankfully I don't hate it either! It is a means to an end. I am still looking into camping options in the USA. Tomorrow is the first playoff game against Burnside from Christchurch. I have been on the bench the last few games and it looks like that will continue. I have way more speed and fitness than our 2 starting wingers but my ball control is not always as good. Our coach has put a big emphasis this year on speed and getting into the corners and this is not happening. But hopefully I'll get some decent gametime and maybe an injury or something will give me an opening to get my spot back. Only 12 days till i get my licence back!!

Sunday, August 20, 2006


Yep you might notice this page has changed its format. I like change--that is one thing I don't have in commmon with my beautiful region, Nelson. Maybe that is one reason I want to move away again. Here's a few changes taking place.
  • I'm employed!-I have been building now for 3 weeks
  • 3 more weeks and I will get my licence back and move out of Teapot Valley
  • I have applied for some camping jobs in the USA but if nothing opens up there then I will stay around at least until early next year
  • We have 1 soccer game left before our playoff games so trainings have intensified and we are aiming to win the playoffs
  • It feels like winter has been and gone and spring is here as it is pretty warm most days
  • Getting my licence back will assist in my life being not so boring!
  • Summer will soon be starting and along with it beach volleyball and touch rugby
  • The Bucknam family is leaving our church and moving back to the USA
  • Cam and Chloe will be getting married in 3 weeks time so I will be flying to Auckland for the wedding. Will also be able to say Happy Birthday to Mum!
I can't wait for some more changes to come along!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Innocent Civilians?

Just what is an innocent civilian? I remember asking myself that question after 9/11. Were the citizens in New York innocent? Or does one lose innocence by merely living in a country and thereby aligning oneself with that countries government and policies and also that countries culture. This week I have asked myself that again as I have watched Lebanese people displaced from their homes and listen to them talk to foreign journalists saying they are innocent and the Israelis are taking innocent lives. This was especially noticeable to me in a valley just north of the Israeli border. This valley has been a Hizbollah stronghold for 20 years with training camps held here etc. Now I suggest that any citizen who lives there has either learnt to tolerate the terrroists who live and train there or they don't really care about them or they might even like what they are doing to annoy their neighbours, the Israelis. The Lebanese have not just allowed Hizbollah to live and operate in their neighbourhood but have also allowed them to be involved in their government where they now hold about 10% of the seats and their influence is much greater than that. Would we in New Zealand stand by if the Mongrel Mob decided to turn from crime to terrroism and then attempted to get seats in our parliament? Interesting to see 60 minutes tonight where I see good kiwi citizens influencing the mongrel mob to give up crime and focus on their families and getting jobs and becoming good citizens themselves. And its working!! I believe the people make the country and whether you have a choice of government or its forced on you, people throughout the centuries have found ways to influence and change their society when needed. I think to do nothing for 20 years does not really allow you to be called an innocent civilian.

1st Division Soccer Championship Winners!

Yes Saturday our 4-2 win over Marlborough sewed the title up for us. With 3 games to go we can't be beaten on points. My part in Saturdays win became very small. Thursday night at training something went crazy in my neck--Dads phone diagnosis was torticollis or wry neck which is a muscle spasm. Man it was painful! I had to stop training and could hardly move my head. 4am the next morning I awoke with huge pain--every few seconds another spasm would kick in with massive pain and then fade away. Next day it was much better and by Saturday it was all but gone. But that combined with Batram Suri joining our team put me in the reserves instead of starting. Batram had a great game and scored 3 goals! So I only got about 5 mins at the end of the game during which I came close to scoring! So the boys are all very happy but we still have 3 more games that we want to win. Then we have playoff games to attempt to get into the Mainland League for 2007. So plenty to play for yet!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Back to work

Yep today was first real paid day of work since I finished camp end of May. I have about 2 weeks work at Fields berry farm planting berries. Last week was still a real busy one tho. We had another win in soccer where I came on at halftime as a striker and played an awesome thru ball to my fellow striker who went 1 on 1 with the keeper and scored. We won 3-1. Then Sunday nite I barely slept as I watched the mens final of Wimbledon followed by the World Cup Final. Unfortunately Henry didn't score any more goals so I didnt win anything in our sweepstake. Monday evening kids camp began. Tuesday to Friday I coached soccer at my clubs holiday Soccer Academy in the mornings and ran around camp in the afternoons as the white wolf from Narnia! Saturday just gone we played Nelson College. I finally got back into the starting lineup playing up front as stiker. We had a great game and I played out of my skin! We only won 2-1 but we dominated most of the game and had many close chances. We are now 9 points clear on the top of the table and if we win next weekend against Marlborough then we can't be caught!! (3pm Jubilee Park-come and watch us win the league!) 4 regular season games left and then we will go into playoffs to attempt to get into the Mainland League for the 2007 season.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Come on England! or should I cheer for France??!!

World Cup quaterfinals start tonite. I have been fortunate enough to be able to watch nearly every game of the world cup so far as I have not been working this month. Its been a very relaxing month although the last week or so I have begun to get rather restless and wanting to do more! My hamstring has healed and last weekend I scored the winning goal in a game for the 2nd division (1st div had a bye). Our 1st division side is now clearly on top of the table and we are on the homestretch to winning the league. I have spent a few weekends up at Redwood Downs this month which has been very nice and relaxing-and of course great meals! I have also finally had my licence taken for 3 months which can be a bit of a pain. I'm hoping my car will sell pretty soon. Also this month I have developed the website for Tasman Volleyball. Check it out! Last Sunday we farewelled Marcos and Denise who were here from Paraguay but then welcomed Lolita from France! 4 of us took her to Poppy Thai for dinner and then to our old favourite Cafe Affair. Lolita is working at Waimea nursery in the footsteps of Juliette, Emmylou, Laure and Charlotte. She is a very fun, beautiful girl as you will see in the pic below! Tomorrow nite we will have a midwinter xmas dinner which I expect will be a lot of fun. And I have just got a job planting pine trees and will start either Monday or Tuesday. I have worked out a plan to work and save over the next 3 months and then head overseas. Not sure where to yet but watch this space!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Monday, June 05, 2006

Sounds for Queens birthday weekend

me and tim with the new toy at Ohingaroa Bay--heaps of fun!!
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Saturday, May 27, 2006

Birthday party

Last Saturday we had a win in soccer against Nelson College which my parents made it to after flying in from Auckland. Then about 15 of us had dinner at the Lonestar Restaurant as we didnt have enough people for the Bar-b-cruise. Lisa and Katie made a treasure hunt for me which involved some challenges such as getting a girl to kiss me, getting someone to buy me a shot of tequila (very nice!!) and then buying feminine product at the supermarket and climbing into the fountain to retrieve a 50 cent coin. Then to Delaneys apartment on the waterfront for more clues to follow around and finally found "the precious" which was a ring made of gold foil in a treasure chest full of chocolate coins!! We had dessert here and I cut the yummy fruit cake which my mum made and dad iced. Thanks!! Watched the rugby and hung out. It was a cool night overall--pity more couldnt make it. Big thanks to those who did make it and special thanks for the cool cards and pressies. Sunday I worked but spent Monday with Mum and Dad and went to the new Nelson museum which gives a good history of the area. Dinner up at Redwood Downs. So my birthday was extended over a week really. I'm now 30 and today I pulled my hamstring!! Its the most serious injury I have ever had so I'm pretty fortunate. We won again today tho so we are now top of the table. I finish working at Teapot Valley next Wednesday so am lookin for a job--anyone got one for me?

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

birthday pics

katie, me and myke
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Sinky andTim deep in thought at dinner
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the new tv showing liverpool in the FA cup final
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Monday, May 15, 2006

turning 30

Yesterday I turned 30! Slept in until about 10 which was much needed after a long weekend working and staying up late for the FA cup final on Sunday morning. Liverpool had an awesome finish again thanks to Gerrard--awesome!! Went to Nelson with Katie and she went clothes shopping while I went TV shopping! Since it was my birthday I bought myself a new TV-- a 28 inch flatscreen Sony. Was on special too! Then the WRX wouldnt start so had to get Daymans to have a look and they ended up putting a new small part in which is now all good! So had a nice Chai Latte with Kate while waiting for that. Then drove up to Redwood Downs for dinner and when I got there Aunty Jan and Lisa were setting the table for about 10 people!! They had arranged a small surprise dinner party!! So that was pretty cool to have some good mates there for dinner. Aunty Jan had made a great favourite dinner being corned beef and hot mustard sauce--mmmm. And kumara, peas and carrots. After dinner we played Settlers--it was a long drawn out game which Katie finally won! I don't feel any older but now I have to say 30 which sounds older than 29!! A great day really and thanks to all who made it special and wrote me emails or sent me texts. And praise to God for His leading of my life--its been a pretty amazing journey so far and I just wonder what the next 30 years holds!!

Friday, April 21, 2006

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Easter bunnies and eggs!!

Thursday night i strained my groin a little at training so left early. Decided to leave for the sounds that night. Got my laundry washed and dried and packed the car and cleaned up heaps of stuff and left at 9:45pm. Got down there at 11:15 and Jude(Lisa's mum) was waiting up for me with a hot chocolate! Friday we put tents up and mucked around. I cooked dinner for everyone. Saturday heaps of people came and we played touch and cricket, rode the motorbikes and ate. Saturday night was Lisa and Tim's engagement party. About 60 were there and we had a pig on the spit. Me and Sinky wore the rabbit ears cause Tim and Lisa wouldn't! Sat round the fire until 4am--actually i fell asleep and woke up and everyone else had gone to bed!! Sunday we played around some more and had a easter egg hunt. I cooked pancakes for breakfast and took Mandy Russ up the top of the hill on the 4 wheeler. I cooked dinner again sunday night, watched a movie and then I had a bath in the outside bath to soak my groin strain. slept in my tent again and woke to rain on the tent-real cool sound!! More relaxing on Monday and more cooking before leaving about 4pm stopping at numerous places on the way home to deliver birthday party invites. My party is May 20 and we going on a bar-b-cruise. Home for dinner cooked by Jennie as her and Nate were here staying. A real relaxing weekend and good times as usual down there. Congratulations to Tim and Lisa!!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Gisborne--soccer mad and no sunshine

Last week was crazy busy putting a new septic system in at camp. Plenty of hard work to get it in in a 6 day period between camps! Friday morning I left for Gisborne. After a stop at Brightwater 4 square for a powerade and some danishes, I pulled onto highway 6 only to see a blue and red flashing light behind me. A mufty cop car had been sitting by the school and apparently clocked me over the 50 km limit. Some new campaign means only a 5 km allowance outside schools. Anyway it will mean 110 demerit points now which means I lose my license for 3 months! Oh well maybe I can save some money! I will sell the WRX as soon as possible. Our team flew to Gisborne on a specially chartered flight and got off the plane and onto a bus to take us to our motel. It felt like we were a real professional team. Everything was organised for us and all paid for including our meals. It was nasty rainy weather all weekend. We won our game on Friday 2-1 against Gisborne Thistle but lost Saturday 4-1 against Mount Albert Grammer School and then lost 4-0 on Sunday against Gisborne City. Flew home Sunday night after a good weekend where we got to know each other well and learn a lot. Was good fun!! I shared a motel room with 2 guys, one named Jay (Ozzie) and he is a loose unit. He drinks a mixture each morning of energy stuff and he get extra hypo and cant sit still!! Hilarious to be around tho!! Good times!! Also Tim and Lisa got engaged on Friday night!! Crazy! Cool! Wow! Next planned weekend away will be Easter down the sounds when we will celebrate their engagement.

Friday, March 17, 2006

annas wedding

Last Saturday was Annas wedding. She married Chris a South African who also plays music and has been living in Germany and playing in an orchestra with Anna. The wedding was in Paeroa and was outside. It rained during part of the ceremony but we carried on under umbrellas!! The reception was really cool and it was great to meet some of Anna and Chris friends from Germany and Spain and South Africa. A very talented group of musicians. A pity Rufus wanted to leave early so we missed them making music together. Good food and wine tho and good to see so many cousins and relatives that I haven't seen in so long and others that I hardly know!! Anna is going to be playing for the NZ Symphony Orchestra in April/May as a trial for a position in it!! Wow!! She has been playing 1st violin in one of Germanys top orchestras! I'm hoping they will be coming to Nelson as part of the 6 week long tour that she will be on. I had flown up to Auckland Thursday night and stayed with Jennie Tiers and her boy Matt. Spent Friday downtown shopping-- a new dress shirt and a map of South America!! Went to the boat show at the viaduct and bought a new yacht! (nah just looked and dreamt!!) Then caught the train from the new Brittomart station (very nice) out to Pukekohe where Dad met me. Sunday we had dinner all together at mum and dads (with Pris and Sjoerd and Johanna) and then me and Rufus and Jon went to the Warriors game at Erricson. Warriors lost. Home for a game of settlers which I would have won if I had kept my mouth shut about it. Jon stopped me tho. Monday was a quiet day and then said bye to Rufus and Jon as they were leaving for South America on Tuesday. Flew home Monday night back to another fun week of school camp at Teapot! Now its Friday night and I'm watching Commonwealth games waiting for the sevens to come on. NZ will win another gold medal. I must say I enjoyed a bit of the opening ceremony but a boy and a duck?? Australians. What did it have to do with anything? Awesome fireworks tho with the river all lit up like that. Tomorrow I play my first real soccer game of the year. Our team is full steam ahead now and I have ordered my new boots(cleats). Adidas Tunits--they pretty cool and the club pays $200 towards them! We have a 2 day tournament this weekend here in Richmond and then a 3 day one next weekend in Gisborne which will include some of NZ's top teams. Can't wait!! I'm playing as a right wing striker in a 3-4-3 formation.

Monday, February 20, 2006

down the sounds

in the wind
Katelyn-catch of the day
10 snapper
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more pics

valley basketball team at sports camp
Denise and Marcos in the Abel Tasman
me at Bark Bay
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pics from the pro tour

Courtney spikes in the womens final at Mount Maunganui
Shannon (NZ) and Laura (Germany)
Courtney and Tracy (USA)
Night session at ASB tennis Centre, Stanley St, Auckland
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Another great week of summer!

I had Monday and Tuesday off last week. Monday dinner was at Redwood Downs with John and Sara Barrett from the UK-Dads cousins. Tuesday I took 2 Paraguayans (Marcos and Denise) up the Abel Tasman. We went by boat to Ohi stopping by the seal colony. It rained and was pretty rough! We ate lunch in the shelter and were treated to a moari wiri or challenge. Then we walked the 90 mins back to Bark Bay and got rather wet. It was still very nice walking thru the native bush with a light rain falling. At Bark Bay the boat picked us up again and took us back to Kaiteriteri. Then off to soccer training!! yep soccer training is in full force and in a months time we are off to Gisborne for a 3 day invitation tournament with some of NZ's top teams. Will be a great experience! Wednesday night and 190 students from Nelson Girls College arrived for their leadership camp. This is pretty big for us so it made for a very busy 2 days.
Friday night was touch finals night. We lost our semifinal tho so no final for us this year. Straight after that we headed for the sounds. Katelyn and Josh came with me, we stopped for KFC and left Nelson. Caught up to Tim and Lisa halfway down and sped up to pass them. Just my luck as a cop came towards us just after I had passed. So I got another speeding ticket which puts my demerit points at 90! (You lose your licence at 100!!) So I can see I really need to go overseas real soon! Tim was lucky tho cause if I hadnt passed him he probably would have got the ticket. Saturday was perfect weather and we took the boat out to Te Mahia with the tube. We relaxed on the beach and I drove for Jerry to ride and then Tim drove for me riding. He threw me around pretty fast and was awesome fun! I managed to make it roll right over and stay on. Back to watch the cricket and have afternoon naps. Then some played in the water again, Katelyn and I rode the 4 wheeler and hunted banana passionfruit before a BBQ dinner. Watched rugby and cricket some more and ate a lot of icecream! Watched Anna and the King movie before bed. I slept in my open tent under a clear starry sky--so nice! Sunday I made pancake and french toast for breakfast and then we took the 2 small dinghys out for a fish. I caught a kawhai and a seagull and then we tied up on a mussel farm. We were about to go home when Lisa caught a decent sized snapper! Then Katelyn caught 1 and soon we had caught 10 of them. Katelyn caught 4, Lisa 3 and josh and mike 3 between them. I had one on my line but it got off and poor Timmy got nothing! He did work hard baiting everyones lines and working the burley. Back home for lunch at about 3pm and Tim and I fileted the fish. Packed up and left about 5pm. Such a great relaxing weekend. Back to work today and its still real hot here. plenty of swimming to be had and icecream and berries to eat!! A short week this week as Friday morning I'm off to Christchurch for the cricket on Saturday. Yeah!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Sports Camp 06 & pro tour

Its been an ultra busy month since I wrote on here last in the middle of the pro tour. I flew back to Auckland and got a shuttle down to Tauranga for the weekend tournament there and then back to Auckland where I stayed with Sharon Broadbent which was fun (shes a real cool cousin!). We spent 3 days preparing the ASB Tennis Centre for the NZ open and then 3 days running it. It was such a blast and I refereed a lot as well and got on TV!! Since I got back 2 weeks ago I have not stopped working on sports camp. Very late nights for 2 weeks is catching up with me and right now I am very worn out!! We just finished camp tonight-not sure how many people we had exactly but 8 teams competed in about 11 different sports and Annesbrook won overall. I also played a few games for Valley and we won the touch final in a real close game.
About 7 people responded to the message that Matty G brought to us. He talked about fear and how perfect love casts out fear. Jeff Bucknam had talked the night before about winning and why do we care so much? Even tho I was so busy I had a great weekend and wish we ran a camp like this every month! Now I have 2 days off so think I will sleep for most of that! Plenty of pics to come on here soon tho!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Tracy, Courtney, and me!

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New Years and the Pro Tour

New Years eve I flew to Auckland and then drove with Mum and Dad down to Tauranga. Stayed at Ruth and Jons and went down to the Mount to see some bands playing and played settlers which I won! Hung around at their house on New Years Day and then Pris and Sjoerd and Johanna turned up and so we had another game of Settlers. Then Monday I met up with the pro tour van and we drove up to Matarangi at the top of the Coromandel. Tracy and Courtney from the USA were with us too and has been real cool hanging out with them. Matarangi was real real nice but we got some nasty weather and freak high tides which washed over the courts! Stayed at the Beach Resort which was real nice!! I ended up refereeing the mens final and have now been given this duty for the tour it seems. I have been assessed in Wellington last weekend so I can hopefully get a qualification for this--maybe I'll become a pro referee!! Thursday we drove to Wellington and Friday setup at the beach there. Went to the second half of the cricket and had a great time as NZ fought back and won. Crowd was awesome! I worked, refereed and played in Wellington so was very busy. Monday morning I flew back to Nelson and am back at camp for 4 days. There are 320 campers here this week so it is pretty crazy!! Tomorrow I will fly back to Auckland to get to the Mount on Friday for the next tournament. So will write about that later!! Summer is great!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Bond clean bowls em!

note the bails are in the air--the ball has just hit and is at the base of the stumps Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 09, 2006

Matarangi Beach

After the tide washed over centre court Courtney wrote this. These cool girls are from California. Good luck on the tour! Posted by Picasa