chilling feet

chilling feet

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Motorcycles and The Invercargill Blighs

(It was pretty cool how many people were out to watch)
This past weekend the entire city of Invercargill transformed into a motorcycle haven during the Burt Munro Challenge.  Burt, who has been mentioned in a previous post, helped to make the city famous during his lifetime when at over the age of 60 he broke the land speed record for under-1000 cc on his motorcycle that was around 40 years old.  He tinkered and tweaked until it really moved.

In honor of this man and his accomplishments, the city of Invercargill hosts numerous days of motorcycle racing every year.  Quite unfortunately Sarah had to work during the coinciding times of events for this momentous weekend, so I headed out solo with some friends we had recently made during our Thanksgiving dinners to take in some Munro Challenge.

(I had to take numerous shots to actually catch these guys!)
It was quite impressive to watch different groups of competitors (broken up into packs based on their bikes and how old or fast they are) speed around the small city of Wyndham.  After learning about the life of Burt it did seem quite fitting to see it memorialized with the smell of rubber burning on asphalt at high speeds.  I know Sarah would have loved this high energy, fast racing, seldom crashing, day of motorcycle crazy, especially after her enjoyment of working at Talladega a few years back.  Who would have thought my little princess would enjoy the shaking stadium of race cars?  Well she missed out on this day and the tasty chips (fries for you back home) and a mince lamb pie (sort of the specialty round these parts - a little pie made for one that is amazingly good).  She helped put those who did crash back together as they were brought into the ED.

(What a front yard!  And this shot does not include the gardens just to our
left, the small pond, the small Maori replica house he built out back, or
the amazing playground just to the right)
While Sarah could not make it to the Munro Challenge, we were able to hit up another museum in Invercargill a few days before.  Anderson House Park is a house that the Anderson family built and lived in (obviously), which has now been renovated into a fabulous art museum.  As also previously mentioned in a prior post, we are watching a show called "A Place to Call Home" that centers around the Bligh family from Inverness, Australia set just after World War II.  Driving up onto this property felt similar to the sort of feel one gets while watching this show, and from doing some reading it seems the Anderson family was equally as active in the Invercargill community as our TV family is in Inverness.  We were not allowed to take any photos inside of the house due to the artwork, which is a shame as the house is beautiful inside and out, but we have some nice shots from outside.  
(Sarah catches me enjoying the gardens. Real men like
flowers, I think)

The house is surrounded with walking paths, gardens bursting with vast arrays of colorful flowers, littered with waterways surrounded by boisterous ducks, and a giant playground for any children that one brings with them to the park.  This place is all put together quite nicely and after all of that admission is free when it is the normal exhibit!  The house and grounds by themselves are well worth the visit, so when the art is added on top of the rest it all just "sweet as," as they say round these parts.  We wandered through as much of the house as we were allowed access to (visitors are not allowed up the narrow stairway to the third floor - bummer), and then headed out to enjoy the scenery and the nature walks.  What a perfect way for us to spend Sarah's day off!

I had to put this next photo in at this size because we like it so much.  The other night while driving home Sarah noted a rainbow in the sky - who doesn't like rainbows?  While driving past Queenspark we could still see it and snagged this shot.

Enjoy the rest of the photos - pictures of flowers from the Anderson House Park gardens that Sarah took.  This next week Sarah has a few days off in a row and we are going to finally have the chance to go see Miriam and Gordon up in Queenstown!  If you know them or are interested in hearing some more New Zealand tales about Americans traversing through Kiwi land, feel free to follow their blog as well - click here.  They are fun people and it's been a great read so far!

(We caught a lot of bees doing their business on the flowers - so fun to watch them at work)
(This guy wasn't flying but instead was traversing on the ground. From what we have read about bees we learned that they will continue to fly and do their job until their wings stop working.  Then they will fall to the ground and eventually starve to death.  We hoped he was just choosing not to fly, but either way, he kept working from small flower to flower on the ground! Can't keep a good bee down, or from doing his job even if he is down)
(Fantastically PINK and YELLOW!)
(They have a few of these arched walkways at Anderson House Park - so pretty and inviting)