Tea for Two…

On Monday 8 February, Tanya and I celebrated 36 years since we first had dinner together in 1985.  On that first evening we discovered that we shared many values in common, but also recognised we had very different personalities and lifestyles.  To some people’s surprise – and our own at times – we have managed […]

Adventures in Te Waipounamu

Tanya has just returned from a stunning adventure in Te Waipounamu …here’s her story and pictures… It began with an unexpected invite from our younger generation of Cumbos – Barney, Jo and 8-year-old Ellie – to my older brother,  Garth,  and me, to join them on a cycling adventure (A2O: Alps 2 Ocean) in the […]

Christchurch Whanau

Before starting our cycling adventure in the South Island, Garth and I spent two days in Christchurch. Our first date was with our cousin Philip Carter, who took us on a guided tour on electric scooters (an exciting first for Garth and me!) of the new city developments in Christchurch.  Philip is one of the […]

An hour from our front door…Rangitoto Island

Back to the simplicity of bach life in summer… On New Year’s Day we hopped on a bus downtown, then a ferry across the Waitemata Harbour to Rangitoto Island for a stay in Bach 52, five minutes walk from the wharf. Bach 52 is another small 1920s bach which has been lovingly restored to near-original […]

Toys for the Boys

  We are doing our best to ignore all the fuss currently going on in Auckland surrounding the America’s Cup.  And the costs… the Government is paying more than $136 million and Auckland Council almost $99 million…and for what? A few bizarre-looking ‘boats’ trying to fly on the Waitematā Harbour… Chris Rattue, in his excellent […]

Farewell and gratitude for a wise elder…

    We are specially sad to hear of the recent death of Dr Rangimarie Turuki Arikirangi Rose Pere. We are hugely respectful of her deep wairua, courage, liveliness of spirit and vision, and her extensive work in education,  in Aotearoa and around the world.  We have admired her ability to challenge conventional Pākehā wisdom […]


A World Away i te Nota (in the North) Our big adventure this month has been a six-day holiday in Tai Tokerau (Northland).  Most of our exploring was around Te Hokianga-nui-a-Kupe, the birthplace of Aotearoa – one of the very oldest areas of settlement by the Pasifika voyagers who were to become tangata whenua. It’s […]

A Political Painting..

We’re grateful to Garth, Tanya’s brother, for lending us this powerful painting by Margaret Lawlor-Bartlett- an 85-year-old grandmother!  She painted it in 2015- and now in her 90s, she is still painting, after a 60 year career as an artist. It will be displayed next year in a retrospective of her work over many decades. […]