These lovely pics were taken by Nice Neighbour, of their beautiful orchid. When it flowers, it perfumes the whole neighbourhood with the smell of vanilla!
I asked if NN had some pics, so she obligingly provided me with these.
I find I have mixed feelings about orchids- there is something vaguely sinister about the look of this one, but the perfume is nice, so I am not sure what I find disquieting about them. Mr & Mrs NN seem to have the magic touch with plants, including the orchids.
One of my wishes, when I was a child, was to learn the piano. Of course, we didnt have a piano, nor was there space for one,- nor could my mother have afforded one, or the lessons. But that didnt stop my childish heart from yearning to learn.
I used to spend weekends at a girlfriend's house, & they had a piano. My girlfriend had no desire to learn, though she had had some lessons, & was somewhat of a Tomboy, in that all she cared about was cars. She had 3 older brothers, & an older married sister. She was by way of being 'an afterthought' as my mother used to say.
Her mother was a lovely woman, with a wonderful sense of humour, & we had some great times, laughing. Her father was a strangely silent man, who had a skin condition- something like excema, which was probably caused, or exacerbated, by the fact that he worked in the Dairy Factory. I am not sure what he did, but I know he was a very clever man, & I suspect he was something to do with getting the balance of the cheese correct. He was a Scientific Mr Big at the factory.
As we got older, my girlfriend's mother was frequently away, nursing her ill mother, & so my girlfriend & I virtually 'ran wild' at the weekends. Dear old Mr C would retreat into his world of itching, & reading, & we would play loud music, & dance about in the lounge, & my friend would study her brother's books about cars.
Girlfriend's father owned an old Morris Oxford - I think it was. Not a car person, & was never really 'into' them the way my girlfriend was. My girlfriend could drive, & I am not sure how she learnt, but suppose one of her brothers taught her when he was home. One of her older brothers had been killed in Korea, another lived in Australia, & her nearest brother seemed to be away a great deal, doing what, I am not sure.
He got his pilot's license, & I remember he took us for a flight over the Mt Maunganui area, once, in a small Piper plane, to help get his hours up for becoming a commercial pilot. He owned a motorbike, & was speed mad, as was my girlfriend.
When we got to be about 15, my girlfriend used to sneak her father's car down the rather steep driveway, & then we would push the car down the road, & she would start it, & off we would go! I think the first time she did it, I was terrified. I kept expecting the police to stop us, or her to crash the thing. She drove fairly well, considering, & we never did come to grief.
As the driveway was so steep, we had no chance of pushing the heavy old car back up again, so she would roar up the driveway, on our return, & roar into the garage. I dont know if her father ever knew, but reason would seem to say he must have! Or else he was totally deaf! Nothing was ever said though, so she continued to do it, when she dared.
I was a relatively 'good' child, as far as school went, & didnt truant -until my final year of High School, & that was only in Study periods, when about 6 of us used to cycle off to a river & swim in the lovely cool water during the steamy, sleepy, heat-laden, lazy, summer afternoons. I can still remember the smell of the grass, and the smell of the river, with the tall basket willows on the banks. And the smell of the bracken, tangled & tall. It would be so golden & hot, & we always wished we could just sleep, lying in the long grasses, after our swim. Of course we had to return to put in an appearance before the school day finished. And then get all hot again, cycling home from school!
My friend of the car-knapping, was an out-of-school friend. Not sure why, but it just seemed to work out that way. She was never in my class, -apart from our first year at school- & so we just didnt spend time together at school. On some of our nighttime excursions she would speed down shingle roads to the beach, & we would swim in the ocean in our underclothes! Even in those days, we seemed to be reluctant to strip off, though it was usually just the two of us.
We are probably lucky we didnt drown, as it was a somewhat wild ocean beach, with a heavy undertow in places. I look back now, & think we are probably lucky to still be alive! I dont know if her mother knew the half of what we got up to, while she was away nursing her mother, but she never said anything to us. Nor did her father, who was probably just glad we fed him, & left him in peace with his books & his itch.
My friend never did very well at school, and I suppose largely 'wasted' her education, as far as academic achievments go. But she became a nurse, & later the Matron of a Hospital, & is now a very High Poo Bah in a Hospital Board.
She always had a wonderful, generous warm heart, & would give a friend anything, unconditionally.
She married a wonderful man, & had 2 lovely children, & now has 4 wonderful grandchildren
And yes, she is still my 'buddy'!