I'm beginning to ask myself maybe, just maybe, I could be good at this home DIY renovation thing.
The reason for my recent reflection is that last weekend I was at Lake Hayes Estate (near Frankton) helping a friend who had just moved into a her new home. She was there with her two daughters but her husband is half a world away, working in the Middle East.
She asked my wife and I to visit for the company I suspect but also because she has been unable to complete some tasks around the house(she has bad arthritis in her fingers and wrists).
So I was proud to achieve the following over the weekend.........
placed a fancy new lock on their garage door after removing their old one
latch a piano to a wall using brackets
install 5 sets of window security locks to windows around the house.
dig out 2 large tussocks from the garden
fix the dish washing machine, and
fix the deck which had a considerable number of nails sticking out
but what's even more amazing is that I managed to do all of this without fighting with my wife!
Of course the big news at the moment is Typhoon Haiyan and the horrible devastation it has coursed in the Philippines - especially on the Island of Leyte and the city of Tacloban.
An accurate estimate of causalities is a long-way off as the country struggles to deal with the massive amount of damage caused. Aid is arriving from many countries and people from around the globe have made donations, but unfortunately it seems that its not getting to the people that really need it.
At times like this you have to wonder what the Philippine Government is actually doing to help - as it seems they haven't achievement anything since the typhoon struck 6 days ago.
You'll be pleased to know that my wife's' family are all ok, as they live in Manila, a good 600 km from Leyte.
With over 40,000 Filipinos in Nz, stories of people waiting to hear news about their family and loved-ones have become common place.
My parents gave us a wee surprise last week with the news that they were having a weekend away in the Catlins and that my dad was keen to play golf with me on Sunday.
So on Saturday evening my wife and I traveled to Kaka Point to meet my parents for fish n' chips (and lovely Blue Cod). Shame the weather wasn't better and we could have eaten on the beach.
The following morning while Wheng was at church and mum shopping, Dad and I played at what was arguably the most physically demanding golf course I've ever played on.
The Balclutha Golf Course can be described as hilly, challenging and with numerous elevated greens and tees. No single hole is flat and steep gullies run throughout. At times it was even hard to drag our golf carts along. It found it hard to judge distance on a undulating course and selecting the right club to approach fast and sloping greens was tricky.
In the end I only just managed to break 100. Thanks for the game Pete. A cold beer never tasted so good!
It seems like all we ever do these days is move house.
Yep, our current home has been placed on the market buy the owners. We have a fixed term tenancy until mid-Dec but after that we will have to move out in 6 weeks when the house goes unconditional (unless the new owners want us to stay on as tennants).
Of course, having this kind of uncertainty means the logical choice is to move on.
That means this will be the third time we have moved house in the space of 6 months. Not ideal.
Thankfully we may have already found a good place to move into thanks to some connections at work.
Yesterday we looked at a small 2 bedroom unit situated only a few blocks from Balclutha's only supermarket. It has a new heat pump and new carpet in the lounge, no garden and a garage that I can actually use.
It's cheap (about $160/week) and is in the process of being renovated (wall papered, new range hood and shower fan etc) buy a guy I know at work.
So all things going well the reno work will be finished soon and we can move in quickly before X,mas.
Of course if we owned our own house we wouldn't have to do this but neither my wife or I are keen on buying in this small South Otago town.
Don't do what I did, which was to assume it would never fail.
After 4 years of service my Buffalo Hard Drive died a few weeks ago. I took it into a couple of computer shops and they even sent it to a specialist in Christchurch. Unfortunately, they couldn't recover my files.
So gone are 100's of pictures and 3 years of teaching notes and lesson plans from my time at Yonsei University in Korea. Not to mention some good covering letters and my MSc Thesis.
Shit, I really should have saved those files somewhere else!