With a big high still bringing us cold nights and lovely days, and no wind to speak of, the sea was so calm again this morning. Hardly any waves at all. For the Pacific Wave Appreciation Society. 🌊

New shoes day — Orba Shoes — Women's Ghost Sneaker:

Designed in New Zealand, Orba shoes are handcrafted using the finest, most renewable plant-based materials in the world.

Matched with excellent lacing — Ian's Shoelace Site — they should be excellent.

White sneakers on feet.

I'm so naive sometimes. I had no idea individuals would have helipads on their houses. I'm shocked — Auckland residents unite against multimillionaire Anna Mowbray's helipad plan | RNZ News:

If the helipad is approved, it will become the ninth helipad in a residential area of the city. … There has also been opposition to helicopter pads on Waiheke Island, where the number has jumped to 60, and there are at least nine on Aotea/Great Barrier Island.

A friend, Sophie, is currently travelling in Sweden to visit family and then on a week long knitting tour in Scotland and the Shetlands. She seems to be having a lot of fun.

She probably doesn't realise though that she's blogging her trip as she uses what looks to be an excellent service called Polarsteps:

One travel app for all your adventures
Plan, track and relive your trips in a smart and beautiful way.

We Kiwis don't like to toot our own horns much but I wanted to keep this for future memories. For years I worked on behalf of the local community and wrote a monthly newsletter. I stopped doing all that recently. Then Tim emailed:

Email says: Thank you for all you have done for Waikawa. especially for your dedicated commitment publishing Waikawa News over many years. Your regular newsletter was first and foremost a community asset, professionally presented, informative. encouraging, binding. A brilliant and impressive contribution.

It is a precious email, a taonga to me. (A treasure)

At dawn this morning there were 3 Royal Spoonbills in the ponded area of the beach where the Pied Stilts like to hang out. I was delighted, as I thought the spoonbills had abandoned us. 🐦

Pied Stilt: who dis?
Pied Stilt: who dis?
Three spoonbills snoozing.
Three spoonbills snoozing.

I came across the weirdest thing on the beach this morning. It was about 2 metres long and to my eye looked like an octopus (or squid maybe) and a shark had got into a fight and drowned together.

In one photo below you can easily see a tentacle wrapped around the fish.

A long dead fish on sand. Where its head should be is a cluster of white objects like bones. A tentacle is wrapped around the fish body.
Close up on the head end of the fish.

There was another hard frost this morning, so when I visited the beach at dawn the sand was white at the base of the dunes.

Frost by the dunes at the beach.

There was an intriguing cloud over Kāpiti Island — like a poorly balanced see-saw.

Kāpiti island cloud, a long and thin line seeming to balance on the peak.

This was free with a newsletter signup — The Opposite of Dark (Casey Holland Mysteries Book 1) by Debra Purdy Kong. 📚

The more I read the more complicated and convoluted the story became, until eventually it just seemed like a soap opera.

I didn't love it.

Book cover: The Opposite of Dark.

So cool to see tech being used for good — Drones Are Whizzing Lifesaving Supplies Across the 'Last Mile':

By land, it would take about four hours to reach this region of the mountainous country. Instead, the journey took just 18 minutes. A drone dropped a red box, containing a blood product that supports coagulation, with a white paper parachute outside the medical center.

I was meant to have a third intro session with a trainer at the gym this afternoon but I begged off. Yesterday I had a covid jab so my left arm's ever so slightly sore. Today I had routine blood draws in my right arm and I'm not sure gym would be a good follow-on.

Home with a cuppa instead.

Today is poop day. 😆

I've done my bit for the National Bowel Screening programme. It's easy and painless and could save me a lot of anguish.

A friend of a friend had a problem picked up this way, and after some surgery is now fit and well.

Letter about the free Bowel Screening Programme.

Heh, The Brokenwood Mysteries has 'storylines so good' people believe the characters are real | RNZ News:

Police officer and fan of the show Bryan Ward … [said] … Probably one of the great strengths of that show is the storylines are that good, that people actually believe the characters are real.

It's one of those days where one weather system is taking up most of our bit of the globe.

A huge high centered between Australia and New Zealand reaches out well beyond both countries.

Why has it taken me so many years to realise I can add useful notes to a Kindle book. Like this one:

Kindle note reads: I'm not enjoying this book very much.

Now I don't need to continue reading when I see weeks later this book is unfinished … 📚

Deb and I are very much enjoying the light-hearted Frankie Drake Mysteries on Acorn:

In Roaring Twenties Toronto, crime has never had it better, and cases have never been more unconventional. This new era calls for a new kind of detective, and Frankie Drake fits the bill. She leads the first female detective agency with her partner, Trudy, as they take on investigations that the police can't and that other agencies won't.

Cover shot for the Frankie Drake Mysteries.

This mystery Bea has to solve pretty much on her own, her usual helpers being otherwise occupied. She still comes up trumps though. A False Alarm (The Bea Abbot Agency Mysteries Book 7) by Veronica Heley 📚:

Someone set a tripwire across the top of the staircase in Sir Lucas’s apartment block causing him to fall head-long and break his arm. A malicious prank … or something much worse?

Book cover: A False Alarm.

A slightly odd one in the series, but still enjoyable. Furtive Prey (The Jessica Anderson K-9 Mysteries) by D. L. Keur 📚:

a crisis of national security proportions pits Sheriff Landon Reid against the Department of Homeland Security … after a very advanced organoid intelligence … is stolen from the DARPA lab out of Idaho Falls, Idaho

Book cover: Furtive prey.

Sometimes these winter days are perfect: glorious sun out of a clear blue sky. 20C, no wind. I can hear the birds. Just gorgeous.

Flaxes beside the garage trimmed back.

On the left the wall of the garage. On the right flax bushes that have been trimmed back.

Now I can try to tidy (and weedeat) the area between the garage and the fence.