Sunday, June 19, 2011
Not alot has happened since my last post. Still having trouble with the stability of internet. They have me staying in a lot of B&B's and thier wi-fi is usually very weak and hard to do any internet work. But since it is raining again, I am at the airport in hamilton awaiting my flight to palmerston north. I will have quite a wait but these things are so unpredictable better to be here early than miss the flight and with the way its raining better to be inside! It was an interesting weekend with lots of history of the local tribes and seeing much of their beautiful wood carvings. then some sightseeing on back roads and visiting a tribes dairy that was supposed to be dry but have had 15 hiefers calve early--not enough milk for co-op to pick up so most is going down the drain, or used for calves. Cows are much smaller than we are used to. adult milking cows (hol) average maybe 1000lbs. that may even be a bit high. they look like my hiefers at about breeding time. but they fit their system. The area was a unique area as it is a geotherm area--many geysers and most heat homes and water by pushing a pipe into the ground and using the natural steam that comes up off the boiling underground water to heat water, etc. In fact i got to see a huge pwer plant that is using the steam from 12 "bores" to generate huge amounts of electricity then the water is used in a hydroponic tomato and pepper farm (11.5 Hectacres all under glass, 1Ha=2.2acres) and then the waste water is run back into the ground to keeep the level under the surface constant to keep ground from sinking. They are also building a milk powder factory to use both the waste water and the electricity from the plant. Then it was off to see more Maori tribe artifacts and villages. It was all very ornate and beautiful but it was good to get an understanding of the native culture and how it all fits with today's culture, gives one a better understanding of the whole culture. Especially after getting opinions on the situation from both sides now. (think native american casinos and you would understand). I found myself wandering some on the trip back to cambridge on sunday and tried to find a state forest that had california redwoods growing in it. What i did find is a back road that got very small, very rough and in the back of my mind I can hear my mother screaming--we are not going any further on this road without a 4WD viechle, and my dad saying its not that bad. eventually it dead ended at a sheep pasture that personally I am not sure how the sheep manage not to continue to roll to the bottom. It was STEEP. then it was on to cambridge and a nice walk around this small town, has a nice new england feel to it, the heart of the equine industry in new zealand. Then the rains let loose so it was a mad dash to my room. Today was a quick meeting at the biggest, most well known horse stud farm in new zealand and a quick tour of a horse hospital. and a horse mri machine one of only 4 in the southern hemisphere at a cost of 250,000$. then the rains started and I headed out to the airport to fly south once again--am running out of room to go south until I will be northa again.