Real. Nice. Time.
The Baroda Street Experience has been really, truly wonderful (see the latest photos). A dream come true on so many levels. From the first night in the new house we felt right at home. It was almost like coming back to somewhere we've lived before. And the neighborhood is absolutely ideal. There's an outdoor pool at the park, just a block away. The primary school that Emory will attend when he turns 5 is two blocks away and it's on a stunning 'campus' in the middle of the bush with harbor views and tree houses and playgrounds galore. And for my morning commute I take the old metro train to work (and I do mean old, not so much cute old, more like 3rd world old - but I love it). Conveniently, the station is just a block away. Not to mention that we're surrounded by lush bush and there's a brook running through the neighborhood, coming down from Mt Kaukau.
The house is not entirely without some minor problems. We knew there were some issues with leaks. Before we even moved in there was a torrential storm that soaked one of the rooms. Nothing monumental, but it's something that has to be fixed and it won't be free, like it used to be when we were renting. All around the house there are 'little' projects on our list. Most of them 'it would make this room look so much better' fun projects.
This weekend was Waitangi Day. Similar, perhaps, in national relevance to July 4th in the US, but quite a different occasion. Instead of a celebration of national unity, it's an annual opening and festering of old wounds, revolving around alleged indigenous rights. Most people choose to enjoy the stat holiday and have fun instead of beating the dead horse. We certainly did.
I went to the Sevens Rugby with my mates and had heaps of fun (see the photos). I have to admit, the game is way more interesting to watch on TV - and it was an amazing series of games, all 20-back-to-back-hours of it! But the spectacle at the stadium is entertaining on so many other levels. The vibe is just plain fun. Everyone just whoops it up and gets goofy as. Including me. I did some things that I think aired on national TV that I hope will never come back to haunt me.
The Sevens is coming to the US in LA for the first time ever this weekend. You've got to see it (airing on FOX Sports). It's a truly fantastic sport. It makes wussy ass American football look like the patsy commercial pro-wrestling-esque sham that it is.
Speaking of good sporting fun, the Kiwis just won the World Softball Championship for the third time in a row this weekend. Shutting out the US team 9-0 in a playoff game with a mercy-rule 5 innings. Who knew?
To top the weekend off, we went to Whopper Chopper. This is an annual event around Wellington that just went national this year. It's a free festival of music, food, kids activities, sun and beach fun (see the photos). I tell you, the kiwis know how to have a real nice time. Emphasis on the real. And the nice.
Last weekend proves my point yet again. We went to the free summer concerts in the Botanic Garden (see the photos). Emory ran around chasing girls and while we enjoyed a picnic dinner of fish and chips in the warm summer evening. Does it get any better than that?
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