Without any excitement-causing eclipse in this part of the world, our week was mostly routine and unremarkable. Miss 16 completed all her planned work by Thursday so on Friday I suggested a trip to our local art gallery. I was especially keen to see the Henri Matisse:Jazz exhibit, featuring his famous colour cutouts. We studied Matisse, including the cutouts, several years ago so it was great to actually see them ourselves.
The gallery paired his work with cutouts by local artists.
I was also interested to see the exhibit featuring work by Len Lye, a New Zealand artist well known for his kinetic sculptures. Sadly photos don't do justice to the colour or movement, let alone the sound!
Paintings featuring local landscapes caught our eye.
As did work by English optical artist Bridget Reilly.
Miss 16 was taken by the irony, sarcasm and satire of piece which commented on ways to make a name for yourself as an artist. Plus the crocheted five little piggies!
Meanwhile my eyes kept getting drawn back to a triptych looking at our colonial history.
On Saturday it was our bird group's monthly field trip which is now my responsibility to organise and lead. We headed to a lagoon about an hour and a half north of the city. Earlier in the year drought meant that the lagoon totally dried up. All the native eels had to be rescued and relocated. After a wet winter we wanted to see what the water level was like and whether the birds had returned. Plenty of water in the lagoon and pretty much all the waterfowl species we would have expected but in much lower numbers than previously. This area is known as a hot spot for one particular type of goose. Luckily one put in an appearance since three members of our group hadn't seen one in the wild before. On our return trip we took a coastal route and made a few stops to observe seabirds and waders. All in all it was a pretty good day.
|A Cape Barren Goose|
For me one of the highlights was just a couple of minutes drive from home when I spotted a Barbary Dove perched on some power lines. One of my birding goals was to spot 100 different species in the year (100 isn't a high number by international standards but there aren't a large number of bird species in mainland New Zealand). I'd come close before but never reached the magic number. The dove was my 100th species this year so Miss 16 forgave me for my sudden command to stop - she was driving and first thought something was wrong!
The only other out of the ordinary event was Mr 19's car getting broken into on Saturday night/Sunday morning. Luckily nothing seems was taken and the ignition wasn't tampered with, so more an inconvenience than anything.