Wednesday, 28 March 2007

Rain is rain by any other name

How many different ways can we say that it is raining? That is the question!

We were and still are the last time I checked, planning on a holiday during Easter, which is a 4 day break here, to Taupo. So, we regularly check the weather forecast to see what the weather will be like. Which direction the wind is blowing and hence how cold it was going to be.

The heat and the lingering summer seem to be coming to an end as the holidays are approaching. It was bright and sunny with temperatures in the mid to high 20’s up until yesterday, but this morning when I checked, the temperature has dipped a few degrees and is now hovering around the lower end of the 20’s band. Still relatively warm I think (depending on the number of layers you have on) but given the fact that Taupo is situated on an elevated part of the country, the nights are going to be a lot colder.

Somewhere there, along with the lower temperatures, are those mean dark rain clouds coming our way from Australia. The website we use to monitor the weather is run by the New Zealand Meteorological Department (or Metservice for short) and is usually pretty accurate and changes every 2 hours or so. It uses these symbols of dark clouds to describe a rain cloud and with it a short narrative to describe the kind of rain. You get to see the forecast for up to the next 5 days usually but I was so tickled by how they described rain for the next 5 days.

To me rain is rain is rain. However way you see it, rain is when it spits down from way up there and you get all wet. The degree of smile on your face is relative to your age when it comes to rain. The younger you are the more you smile as you get to soak yourself with your clothes on and it is beyond your control. As you get older, you need to attend to the wet clothes and foul state of health after the rain all by yourself, so the smile slowly creeps away and we seek shelter. How else could one describe a weather so miserable when the clouds are dark, the air is humid and you feel gloomy.

The Metservice, on the other hand, has an interesting array of words to describe this. Here is what I saw describing rain!

Day 1 – Overcast with occasional rain

Day 2 – Periods of rain

Day 3 – Outbreaks of rain

Day 4 – Rain easing to showers

Day 5 – Showers clearing then rain developing

In short it was going to be raining for the next 5 days! Period! However, I still have not figured out what the difference is between rain and showers, though.

Saturday, 24 March 2007

All in a day's fun

This afternoon we attended an International Food festival here in Kapiti. We arrived at 11 in the morning and the dances had begun. There were lots of different cultural dances and food from the various communities that make up Kapiti. We sampled food from Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Japan, Brazil, England, China, America and of course host New Zealand.

At the event, we migled with people from these ethnic backgrounds and had an invitation to an Indonesian get together next Sunday and an open invitation to camping with the Filipinos! Not bad for a day's event. We also got to meet and speak with Nathan Guy, National MP and the Alan Milne, Mayor of Kapiti Coast District Council.

All in a day's fun.

Sunday, 11 March 2007

McDonald's Fun Run

Summer is still here! It is still a balmy high 20's for now and the weather is good for all that outdoor sports.

This morning McDonald's together with Kapiti's Rotary Club organised a Children's Fun Run as part of the Children's Day celebrations. Anil took part representing his school, Paraparaumu Beach School.

At the start...

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And, at the finish...

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Saturday, 10 March 2007

Save Hector

New Zealand is home to the world’s smallest and rarest marine dolphins – the Hector’s dolphins.

Once distributed in waters all around the New Zealand coast line, these very special animals have now declined to just 7000 individuals and have been fragmented to a degree that threatens their survival. Read more about this on the Forest and Bird website.

Anil's school distributed this leaflet he is seen holding and asked students to go the beach and create a sculpture of Hector using things you find on the beach. His creation is below.

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It was a real nice warm day for an end to summer but who's complaining? In about a month's time, anywhere near the beach would probably require a thick sweater.