Rainy Days & Barry S. Falls

It feels unusual not to have a full work-programme during the school holidays, and I admit I had a great week. Busier than usual though, lots of walking, hiking, a bit of drive-way work, took a family fishing, some photography, went up Mt. Hirakimata and things going well, I’ll even be “busier” in the upcoming weeks. There is a vacation coming up as well soon, and I’m looking forward to assembling and using my new chainsaw.

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Simple Off Grid Home

I made a short video using the photos taken during the building process of my small, off-grid home. All the materials were brought onto site using a quad and the major tools used were: hammer, nails, circular saw, protractor, calculator, tape measure, theodolite and a level. I certainly learned how to hammer a nail in.

After building the foundation, I spread the word that I need someone to help me with building the rest. A dream came true when a seasoned man showed up on beniSland, a very experienced builder, man of god and good friend. He taught me how to build and when times were stressful or confusing, he just smiled and we moved on.

The music (Persian march) is by Johann Strauss Jr.

Great Barrier Island Photography

I made a short video from a few photographs I’ve taken this year. Brandon Stanley mentioned Adobe After Effects to me as a way to visualize photos. I had a bit of a go at it and ended up using the free Video Editor OpenShot. I’m content with the outcome, easy to use software and stable on my Ubuntu OS. The pan and zoom effects are unfortunately not comprehensive enough. I had also a go at Kdenlive (another free, open-source video editor), which seemed to offer a better range and diversity of effects, but it crashed on my system.

Set the youtube settings to Youtube-HD 720p for best resolution.

Improving New Zealand’s Fish Stocks

If you’re interested in the state of New Zealand’s fish stocks, you’ll find an enourmous volume of publications from government and ministry of fisheries claiming that they are on the rise, improving in quantity and quality. NZ fish and commercial fishing methods applied are up with the world’s best.

Well, I’ve lived 13 years in New Zealand and one thing every immigrant learns quickly is that New Zealand is world class in EVERYTHING. Full stop. I believe we also make some of the best mozzarella cheese worldwide.

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New Zealand Kaka & Camping On BENIsLAND

It has been lately rather hot here on the Barrier. More than 25 deg. Celsius at seven in the morning doesn’t feel normal, but I certainly don’t mind. As a matter of fact, I’ve been practising FKK (German for doing the stuff you do, as you do, but naked). I have a few cool off showers per day, the water comes straight from the creek and have otherwise been enjoying staying on the land. Listening to operas, reading, eating and walking through the bush.

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Relaxing Start into the Year 2016

Dear friend,

             life is easy and comfortable on beniSland. I have been rather lazy in the last three weeks, often having to check what day it is. I don’t do much, attend to the gardens (not good this year) and animals, go for walks in the backyard, read about my hobbies, do a couple stretches and cook yummy food.

I’m happy and also pissed off.

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My Chicken Farm

Happy New Year to you and my best wishes for 2016. It’s has been pouring rain heavily for the last 10 hours here on the Barrier, accompanied by cold, northerly gusts. Quite an ugly start into the new year weather-wise, but it’s All Good.

Today, I wanted to post a couple photos of my little chicken farm and setup. There are two chook pens, the new one was established only weeks ago and has an area of about 40 square meters. A few days ago, I managed to get all the chicken together into the new pen. There are 13 hens, 1 rooster and 14 chicks.

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Tryphena Harbour Views & Private Hiking Track

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you. I have been taking it easy in the past weeks, enjoying time off, eating, drinking and otherwise mucking around on the property. The best part of this holiday is, however, that work still gets done and that important projects were finished (not by me). Fortunately, it is sufficient to take a supervisory/2nd row role, as David is an outstanding wwoofer (willing worker on organic farm).

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Pushed Around Like Clouds

Dear friend,

sometimes we are pushed around in life by forces outside of our control. We might feel, as a result, a lack of consistency, shape and even ability. These emotions can have negative impact on our lives. How we deal with this realisation or feeling is the aim of this post. But let us take a figurative step back and think of clouds. It has helped me and it might do so for you.

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