Strolls, discoveries and chickens again

There are periods in life where things just roll along quietly and other times when it is just the opposite.  Right now we seem to be in period where all sorts of things are going on, where schedules are full and the unexpected happens.

Anton was taken into hospital this week, and although he is now fine and home, it was quite a tense couple of days as you can well imagine.  It meant that our planned trip to Christchurch this weekend had to be cancelled, which actually turned out to be a good thing, as it meant we had a little bit of quiet time at home.  In fact, it was 3 years ago yesterday (22nd) that the city was devastated by an earthquake.  A memorial service was held in the city for the 185 victims.

The weather has been mostly good too, apart from some fog the other day that hit the low lying land around the airport, which in fact had to close for a while.  It was strange to hear about it, and yet still be sitting in sunshine up on the hills!  Anyway, I have been walking through the Botanic Gardens and Bolton Street Memorial Park a lot, and discovering alternative paths.  I don’t know why I have never taken the ‘up the hill’ route to the Lady Norwood Rose Garden before, but I did so this week, and was so pleased I did as there is a great view of the city from the top.

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Looking down on Lady Norwood Rose Garden

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A bit cloudy over Wellington

The same day I also took another path through Bolton Street Memorial Park which has featured already in this blog.  Here are some of the things I found this time.

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IMG_1827A restored memorial

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Fallen fruit

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A surviving wooden cross from 1876

We also had our first Swedish guest this week – hoorah!  I made a chicken and chorizo dish, really simple, tasty, and easy to do on coming home from work.  All you need to do is cook a few slices of chorizo in a pot that can also go in the oven.  Remove when cooked, and throw in some chicken pieces (whatever you like or usually use).  Brown, remove, add oil if necessary and then fry a chopped up onion.  Add 125ml of white wine and a good spoon of paprika.  Simmer for 5 minutes, and add a tin of tomatoes and 250 ml chicken stock.  Bring to the boil, return the chicken, cover, and cook in a preheated oven (180C) for 30 minutes. Add the chorizo and a tin of cannelini beans and cook for another 10 minutes.  Could not be simpler!  I think rice and a crisp, green salad goes well with this.  (I also made a 1980s Delia Smith chicken dish this week which just did not work…the meat was too dry and the sauce pretty tasteless…it used to be a ‘go to’ recipe, so I obviously did something wrong).

I have added a category of ‘reviews’ to the blog, for exactly that.  Expect the first two soon, as the New Zealand Festival has started.

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