Friday, November 10, 2006

Up the creek without a....

We have been so busy that we haven't been out together with the kayaks in ages. Tommy has his nights out with the boys most Wednesdays but I've been itching to get out for a paddle. Last Sunday afternoon we finally did it. We packed up some fishing gear and headed off. Skip waved us off "Don't forget your paddles! Ha-ha!!"

Some friends were taking their kids fishing off the wharf at Torpedo Bay so we headed down that way. We got to the boat ramp and started unloading. It was then Tom turned to me and said "Did you put your paddle in?"

AAAARGGGGH!!! Oh crap, I felt like a right eejit! Oh well... I thought Tom had put it in but next time I'll have a better system for packing! Every time we go out we learn something new but I have to say this was a bit of a major foo-foo!! So... I left Tom to get suited up and play with his fishing gear and drove home again to get the paddle!!

Once I got back WITH MY PADDLE we got started. We paddled out to the end of the wharf where we saw Mel, Chris, and the kids then paddled our way around the corner to Cheltenham Beach. Being a Sunday afternoon they was an lot of traffic in the harbour, most of it heading back into Auckland. At times it was a bit like I'd imagine it to be if you were cycling on the motorway... bigger vessels all about at a much greater rate of knots than we were doing... and us putt-putting along. We headed back up towards Deveonport and the wake from the larger boats was churning up the surf. I discovered that my kayak rides the waves well... much to my delight!! Wheeeee!! Tommy was aching to have a fish but I wasn't so keen. I didn't yet have a paddle leash and the thought of trying to keep a hold of it and fish was not really very appealing... besides leaving it behind once in an outing was enough for me... and I was starting to have a lot of fun riding the waves! Tommy went back around the point to have a fish and left me to my own devices paddling out deeper then rollercoasting back in again.... Over .... and over. After an hour or so of that I was starting to wonder if it had been a good idea after all as my muscles were starting to complain. I was quite pleased to see Tom heading back.

As we got the kayaks out of the water and started changing out of our wet gear we couldn't wipe the cheesy grins off our dials. Tom was rabbiting on about all the little things he had learnt, where to put the gear while fishing, where to stow it coming back, blither blither... and me still buzzing from riding the surf... we had had a fantastic afternoon... it's the simple things in life that are the best!!

And after all that sun, salt, and surf.... we slept like logs!!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

The fun never ends!!

So... after you've been out diving for the day what do you do in the evening... kick back and relax?? Hell no! Hafla!

On the Sunday I finished my dive course I raced home showered, changed, grabbed the cheese logs and crackers I'd prepared earlier and headed off to the Hafla that our dance teacher had organised. This was basically a get together of belly dancers from the various classes my teacher runs and we perform dances we've learnt in class as well as having a a general boogie. I love it because it's great to see the other dancers in their costumes and it's a great excuse to get into mine!!!
Tommy decided to get into the spirit and found himself some baggie pants, a stripey vest and skull-cap type hat... he looked quite the part. Another couple of friends came along too to see what it was all about. Christine looked the part... ethnic if not bellydancer but Chris piked out of wearing his big fake moustache, turban and Turkish flag. Still, there's always next time
There weren't as many people at this party but I still enjoyed myself immensely! It was also an opportunity to warm the dance blood up ready for the following weekend... I had been asked to dance at my Great-Uncle's 80th birthday!! Gak!!

Still, I had agreed to it and it was too late to bail out. Really there wasn't much chance of that, I enjoy it too much and since I've successfully completed the dive course I kinda feel a bit bullet proof... hell, if I can breathe under water a wee belly dance for 100 or so people would be a doddle!!

I had taken a look at the venue and figured out that with everyone seated I'd be able to dance up and down the aisle between the two rows of tables... great... plenty of room! My Aunty and Uncle had sorted out the logistics of my entrance and and getting the music sorted out ready to play... this was going to be a piece of cake!! Hmmm I spoke too soon!

When the door was opened for me to make my entrance I was confronted with the back of a wheelchair... no worries I negotiated my way around that ... when is the music starting... aha... there it is... ready set go!! I started dancing the choreography that I know like the back of my hand... I've done it so many times now I can just about do it blindfolded... thank God I didn't!! I turned to dance my way down the room and discovered a row of eager eyes peering up at me... Yipes! Before I'd arrived the children who were at the party had sensed (as children do) that something was about to happen and had crept up as close could to where they figured the action would be! This did not leave me with as much floor space as I had expected and already the choreography had gone out the window! Oh well... to hell with it!! I'll make it up as I go along!! So I wiggled and squiggled and jiggled my way through the music... above it I could hear Libby "Daddy... DADDY!!!! LOOOOOK!! Janene is bellydancing... BELLYDANCING!! Squeeeee!!"

It was hardly fair that only those up the front of the room were getting a good look at the show so I managed to jump over and through the kids so I could get a few turns up and down the hall! It was a very accomodating crowd and I only had to mime clapping above my head once to get them all clapping along... bless'em!! I have no idea what the performance looked like from the audience's point of view. People are often reluctant to give negative critcisms, it's alsways difficult to to tell if they are just being nice when they say they enjoyed it... oh well... I enjoyed myself and my Aunt and Uncle thanked me profusely.... All in all it was quite exhilerating!!

I may even do it again... one day...