Tuesday, April 10, 2012

You must cut down the mightiest tree in the forest with a herring

If there was ever a tree that was designed to live on an uninhabited island, it is most definitely the Kauri. A thousand years ago, they covered the top part of the country; but their wood was so well suited for building (and the land underneath so well suited for farming) that less than 5% of the original forest remains. Furthermore, Kauri roots are so sensitive that if you walk near one, the tree will die; and if they get exposed to Phytophthora taxon Agathis, a fungus that only likes Kauri trees, they die. (Here's a photo of Nico and Janice standing at a safe distance from Tane Mahuta.)

A couple of nights in a luxury tent in Kerikeri is a great way to enjoy the Bay of Island. A luxury tent is like a regular tent, except it has furniture and a refrigerator.

And there's a (rain proof) deck and a view.

Even Jancie didn't seem to mind roughing it.

When I have time, this post will continue with Waitangi and the Hellhole of the Pacific.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Dear Friends, Family and Colleagues,

It is with some sadness and much excitement that I tender my resignation, effective immediately. I have enjoyed living and working in New Zealand immensely, but have slowly realized:

1) Summers in Hawke’s Bay are too hot
2) Winters are not cold enough
3) There are just too many people here

With these three points in mind, and a strong desire to work in an underserved area, I have purchased the McMurdo Station Pharmacy. I have big plans for the business, and am hopeful that the favourable climate will allow me to fulfil my life long dream of running a pharmacy/ice cream parlour…the cost savings on refrigeration alone make this venture a no-brainer.

Michael B. Lasko, a Real Southern Man