Daily posts

Lockdown Day 6

A quiet day today. We went for a long walk around the village with Ana who was pretty determined not to enjoy it but cheered up when we went to the shop for ice cream.

A little bit of Minecraft in the afternoon and making some progress on the jigsaw puzzle.

Police cruising around looking to enforce where necessary. people in Pirongia behaving properly though.

Daily posts

Lockdown Day 5

They say it’s something like bereavement which may seem like a very silly comment to anyone who has recently lost a loved one. This bubble living that is. For sure there are mood swings, a sense of loss, some hysteria perhaps and many false notes of gaiety.

I’m thinking about chalk marks on the wall or maybe a big block with the number of days to go so we can cross them off one by one and have a sense of a goal worth reaching.

Finding things to engage Ana is becoming a little worry – not yet a great challenge. Of course she is bored and misses her friends. Grandad and Bun Bun are no substitute really.

However, we did start on a Treasure Box today and Ana will carry on painting that tomorrow.

I was quite busy today setting out the third of our garden beds (family graves as Hania calls them).

Our neighbour’s cows are very interested in our lettuces. At least they are better than the horse which pulled up my rose bush.

So far things are looking pretty good here in NZ in terms of cases and especially deaths. However, once the worst is past I’m not sure how we manage as a country dependent on tourism. I mean after 4 weeks hopefully we have beaten this thing here.

I suppose we will have to get used to checking people at the border and damping down any hotspots as quickly as we can.

Plenty of police presence on the streets which is good. Checking on tourists and freedom campers who just need to do the right thing.

We watch the news conferences. Donald Trump compared to Jacinda Ardern. I heard somewhere a comparison about Dads and Mums. For me it’s the crazy Uncle vs the firm but fair Mum. Our health and police leaders are adults as well, very comforting in a crisis.

Daily posts Memories

Lockdown Day 4

Today is a sad day for us, a Kiwi has died from Corona virus. Our thoughts are with the family.

Following on from yesterday I would like to know who these ladies are with my mother who is on the right. I’m guessing it’s from the same series as yesterday?

Today we started with a jigsaw puzzle (hey Mary Beadle the younger). It ‘s pretty detailed I have to say.

Later more Boules, a strange race track game and a long walk for Vicky and I. Tonight there was a pretty good sunset over the mountain.

Pirongia Maunga or is it Maunga Pirongia I should probably know.

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, ‘Waikato tribes – Ancestors’, Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 29 March 2020)

Story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, published 8 Feb 2005, updated 1 Mar 2017

Kia kaha (stay strong) everybody and this too shall pass.

Movie night for the 4 grown-ups tonight, woo-hoo. We are making progress on the jigsaw.

My first real job out of college was as a QC seismologist which sounds pretty grand I suppose. What I actually did most of the time was look at the output of a trace of the 50 odd geophones from a long cable stretched out behind a survey vessel.

The digital equipment was pretty bulky by today’s standards and the seismic recording were made onto 9-track tape – that’s a tape rewinder in the background I’m pretty sure.

Tapes were boxed up 10 at a time and air-freighted to the processing centre. At this time (around 1974) you could probably count the number of satellites on the fingers of two hands and most of those were for satellite navigation (not in geo-stationary orbit I might add, so we sometimes had to wait for them to align before starting a survey line). However, the satellite data was not very accurate so usually shore-based radio systems like Maxiran were also used and a PDP-8 computer onboard calculated the position. Something a modern calculator could handle pretty easily but the PDP-8 took up a whole rack.

This is nav gear I think and the PDP is the one on the right but don’t quote me. I do remember playing moon-lander using the printer output at one point.

Daily posts

Lockdown Day 3


Some Minecraft later with Ana, Vicky and Mike and then, piece de resistance, a John Wayne movie about an Irish American prize fighter returning to his homeland. I’d tell you the title but you really don’t want to know.

Today’s memory is specially for Bromley and Michelle.

Loved those NHS specs, the other kids at school were so nice about them.

UPDATE: Bromley tells me it is not him or Michele as I had always thought. Nice bow-tie anyway whoever you are.

Daily posts Memories

Lockdown Day 2

A rainy day so nothing much outside. Went up to the attic (my office) and found the suitcase full of old photos and memories.

The one in the middle is in 1982 just before we went to Portugal. Hania got her driving licence and we hired a Volkswagon Polo and drove to Seaford on the south coast for a picnic – English style. Yes, it was as cold as it looks.

The bottom one with Ewa Paradinska (Ciocia Ewa) is taken in Chybice, the country estate probably in the mid 70’s I would think.

James’ hand.

I’ve got a bored little girl here called Ana. She doesn’t know what to do. So we made a scarecrow too:

Daily posts

Lockdown Day 1

A lazy day, probably be many more.

Ana and I played Minecraft for a bit and worked in the garden. Hania tidied up the garage and we put a few things in the shed.

Vicky had a sprouting garlic clove so we planted that too.

We went to the shop for milk and ice cream. Very strange, only one per family at a time and big crosses taped to the floor to show people how to distance. The shop was very quiet.

Few cars and few people out and about.

Obviously we went to see the goats again.


A new beginning

Starting a new project for the old jonesnz site. The site was most recently providing information and allowing queries about Karapiro Accommodation but that no longer exists (at least we don’t run a place of that name anymore).

Over here in Pirongia we are in lockdown for 4 weeks so let’s see what we can find to occupy ourselves. Fair warning, it may be less than riveting.

There will be some Minecraft and many walks to see the goats. beyond that we’ll see.

On this, the day before we started lockdown I worked on a site for Pirongia Heritage and Information Centre:

If you want to comment or contribute to the blog, let me know via richard who resides at jonesnz and com.

I recently also transferred posts from to this site.

Daily posts

Lockdown Day 0

The Robot

The Tin Can robot package has been in my attic office for a few months now so finally Ana and I assembled it.

It works pretty well.

Later we went to see the goats (again).

The rest of the afternoon was spent on the video (I need the practice).