Posted by: nativeiowan | April 26, 2017

2017 v4.waiting for my flight

Brisbane International departures … 

Just had a nice coffee delivered by a very cute gal. 


I sit in a second story lounge watching the bussle of travelers below. 

Woke at 4am. Moaned a bit and remembered my fall from the Segway in the eve. I rattled my hips n right shoulder a bit. Gracie laughed when I fell.

After the groan I recalled flooding the bathroom. Yep, after supper I started the bath then sat down in front of the TV n fell asleep. You got it, I dozed off n forgot the bath and flooded the big bathroom. Got some of the carpets in the closet wet. Ran a fan all night trying to dry things off.

I hear someone in the peanut gallery holler “wanna buy a lottery ticket?”.

I am flying off to Honiara in an hour or so. Always nice to go home, back to those marvellously warm n fucked up Hapi Isles we know and love so much. 

Traveling very heavy. Checked 3 bags, about 50kgs of gear in. Most is stuff for ICE. A few kgs of coffee, a couple kgs of cheese, odds n ends for the boat. 

The coffee machine hisses. The roar n vibration of powerful jet engines can be heard n felt. The lounge I am in is library quiet. The smell of fresh toast scents the air.

And life is good…

Smiles 

Posted by: nativeiowan | April 7, 2017

2017 v4.0

So it is April. First quarter of the year gone.

The world is still on fire, from within and without. But then the world has always been on fire, somewhere, somehow, all the time, the world is on fire.

I think of my youthful combustion and zeal. Fuelled by poets and prisoners. Incited by longhaired radicals, raggedy believers. Ignited by bodies in the mud, crimes, and lies. And presidential disgrace. We felt as if we had “won” something.

Just read an article about the YOUTH OF RUSSIA and their zeal… https://www.stratfor.com/geopolitical-diary/brave-new-world-kremlin?id=be1ddd5371&uuid=d1a71237-e91e-4299-b288-d2f95b0dc2ef

I listen to, read, digest the news daily. Had a real fun one yesterday… IMG_5816 The boat grounded after it “shit a submerged lateral marker”… made me laugh. Luv solid, honest reporting!

Speaking of which… BREAKING NEWZ… I note that the US just dropped bombs in Syria. Hmmm… interesting times. An act of aggression, overt aggression by the US of A. Against Syria… Hmmm… I am not very hawkish but I might be convinced to agree that it is about time Syria got reprimanded for killing it’s own people with GAS.

Did the Assad regime Gas it’s people. Most decidedly yes. Was this last “gassing” an Assad attack? Some say yes, some say no.

But argument over yea or nay is a planned diversion.

I do believe that the past administration was too verbal and too inactive when it came to Syria/ Assad. Too many damn lines drawn in the sand, for my liking. Bluff talk only works when it is periodically backed up.

Going to have to read up on this to decide what I think. But the fact that Assad had “destroyed” all his nerve gas stock piles may now well be proven to be a bold face lie.

And I have  a habit of not trusting proven liars.

But… BUTTT!!!!… We be talking international war. We have been here before. Are we repeating history, again, and again, and again…

wwars

Where are we? What are we doing here? Who out there does not understand that we are living in an era of conflict?

My neighbourhood is pretty cruisie.  I can leave my doors unlocked. I ma lucky.

But I know neighbourhoods that are not. Check this out for a bit of a look at our world in conflict… https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:21st-century_conflicts

We have no scope, no concept of the unspeakable horrors so, so many innocents endure.

One quick modern example: The Kobanê Massacre was a combination of suicide missions and attacks on Kurdish civilians by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant on the Kurdish-held city of Kobanî, beginning on Thursday, 25 June, and culminating on Friday, 26 June 2015.[6][7][8] The attacks continued into 28 June, with the last remaining ISIL militant being killed on the following day. The attacks resulted in 223–233 civilians dead, as well as 35–37 Kurdish militiamen[4] and at least 79 ISIL assailants.[5] It was the second-largest massacre committed by ISIL since it declared a caliphate in June 2014.[9]      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koban%C3%AE_massacre

We (I) sit and watch the various news services.

I am a centrist. I do not support a political team. I do not/ can not encourage the actions of either the LEFT or the RIGHT. I hear rhetoric. I hear Rhetoric. I hear RHETORIC. I hear little else.

The President of the US of A ordered missile strikes on airfields in Syria.

I know from intimate experience that throwing a punch, “Throwing A Punch”, is not something one does lightly.

Is your punch is thrown inappropriately? Even wrongly?

I know that you can, I can appropriately throw a punch. There are situations that warrant and even demand an appropriately thrown punch.

But I have, I confess, throw inappropriate punches. I have had my arse kicked in the streets more than once. I have a dead nerve through my face from one such testosterone poisoned party. My story (and I am am sticking to it) is there we at least eight big RenBel boys packing into a little car. I remember one guy came out swinging a heavy-footed microphone stand.

Its all started because of an inappropriate punch. Well, there was a girl involved too.

So we balme it on testosterone poisoning.

What do we blame this recent Aggressive Action on?

Assad being a murdering sumabitch? Trump being trigger happy? Obama being a pussy.

Before the NEWZ came in I was going to right about happy things…

This picture is giving the scale of the space I have to squeeze into in order to fight the leak coming into ICE through the rudder shaft. To th right of my foot, and under the hydraulic ram operating the rudder is a tiny, cramped place where I need to use tools and make things happen. I have found the appropriate “bilge-yoga” poster that allows me to actually sit down and take a reasonable amount of time to do the job. 2017-03-16 11.21.21

This is a picture of David and Jackie Fegan. Having lunch on a Sunday in Honiara.IMG_5732My son, Don, with his pigs. Yes, Don went to school in Iowa and loves his livestock.IMG_5636

Don’s daughter, Dawn, and I…IMG_5722

looking toward Gizo town…IMG_5630

Pat Purcell on ICE…IMG_5713

Ice and Pursuit tied up at Gizo…IMG_5628

Best fish n chips in the world… Gizo, Solomon Islands…IMG_5711IMG_5710

Moving onto ICE. A lot of cleaning was done…IMG_5627

Full moon night, DD ICE @ Gizo, Solomon Islands…IMG_5706

Luv the Solos… Commuters @ Gizo Harbour…IMG_5642Gizo lagoon…2017-03-16 10.35.34

Posted by: nativeiowan | March 19, 2017

2017 v3. HoniaraTime

IMG_5730

Sitting up on the hill, enjoying the placid blue of Iron Bottom Sound. About 1030am and maybe 24c/ 80f. Sunday morning coming down in the Big Mango.

Yesterday I had a relaxed morning with a meeting scheduled at a local cafe at 130pm. SO I puttered and read through the morning then went to the Mendana for lunch. After the past 10 days in Gizo I thought a fancy sit down club sandwich would do me. In Gizo I lived on the fish and chips. Each pub or eatery had their own version. Some was better but all were good. Fresh Kingfish or Tuna is grand. but my favourite is Hump-Head Maori Wrass… who out there has feasted upon this fin delicacy? A CETIS listed endangered species… The fish is listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red list and in Appendix II of CITES.[12] Species numbers for the humphead wrasse have been declining due to a number of threats, and very tasty indeed…

A dingy lil over-the-water affair in the old KHY waterfront, I think it’s called the Sea Front,  sells a massive feed of the best, THE BEST, fish n chips I can recall. Big fresh chunks of endangered species with a pile of honest kumara chips and a salad. All for about 10.00USD.

I rate this as one of the best meals I have had in ages and ages.

Any one near Gizo should make an effort and check it out. Mockson is the owner of the place. It is dingy and a bit unwelcoming. It is a waterside bar first and foremost. A desperate array of nefarious looking personages hangout there (most are my family), but there is an upstairs dining area away from the bar. Breezy and bright, I highly recommend it.

I depart from this trip with a sense of positivity, an optimism, if you will. For the first time in years and years… for the first time in a long time, I see a positive change here.

Most dramatically, the streets of Honiara are cleaner than I can recall. Gone are the piles of plastic and greasy papers that normally punctuate the urban landscape. No longer  are the old oil drum rubbish bins full to overflowing. The rubbish is being collected. By whom I am uncertain. It is the why that I tried to understand…

Why is the rubbish being picked up. Why are the streets reasonably tidy.

The answer appears to be rather simple… The Tourist Ships are back. The first weekend here I saw 2 vessels arrive and depart. While in Gizo I saw one ship arrive and depart.

Amazing what a change a bit of tourism can make.

My faithful hounds lie about in a confused array of postures…

We have 5 Rodeasian Ridgebacks here… Bean, Iowa, Lauru, Scarlet, and Rhett. They have a tough life, no doubt.

I have been 17 days in these islands. I had forgotten, over the past 16 months, how down right beautiful it is here.

Considering I spent 10 days on DD ICE (DD stands for “Diesel Duck”), working pretty much every day cleaning and fixing, I can say I feel better, happier and smarter than when I showed up. Maybe I was getting a bit too retired down in Aus, over these past many months. Maybe I need more to challenge and drive in me. Maybe, but I do know I enjoyed being on ICE and have throughly enjoyed my time here. I will be back soon.

ICEBound photos… 2017-03-14 21.08.02

The stern/ rudder-tube area where I spent much time doing Bilge Yoga and my office onboard – nice view, eh?

Pat Purcell hanging and the view from San Bis jetty…

Local commuters in Gizo harbour and The Fegan with Abraham after a long day of fun.

Life is good

Posted by: nativeiowan | February 26, 2017

2017 v2.26

An overcast heavens. A heavy dusk. Fruit bats fill the sky. Forbidding omens?

It rained earlier so the air is light, clean.

Looks and acts like it will rain again soon.

Winter is on the way. Nights are cooler. The pool is much cooler. I have been running the pool-heater. 32c / 90f is the target temp in the eve. SO far daytime temps have been about 29. But as the air chills and the wind blow. a 90 degree pool is pretty cozy.

Spent much of the past week on the road. I like driving/ riding. I like the solitude of keeping your eyes on the road.

Had the boys home this weekend. Got new in on Tuesday. Transfers with Nick n Bren a couple days. Took the triton to Clifton. Lets see…

About 2000ks all up. About 25 hours on the road. And it all mad eve happy.

My family knows I do not chatter when I drive. I comment. I note things. But my concentration is on the drive.

Got a date with the Solomons this week. Fly off Thursday morn for a visit to the Haps isles. My first visit in 15 months. Must be getting old!

Have been having fun discussions with old friends lately…

W.E. does and interesting blog I highly recommend… https://rosebyanyothernameblog.wordpress.com/

Have been chatting with Beardski lately. Heard from Henry Kellam III. My Granddaughter Lucky 13 turned 2… gg-2

Talk about BAD Blood… this gal got it all… Lauru, Munda, Vella, Iowa… A proper B.B. for sure…

Nick and Bren Makin stopped by on their way through Oz… it was great to see them… img_5592Had a lovely eve together. I am soooo happy when ol friends like Nick n Bren stop by and we enjoy each others company as if we’d not seen each other for 4 years. It was a gas!

Life is good

Posted by: nativeiowan | February 19, 2017

2017 v2.quietnight

Where are we? Somewhere in mid-February.

It is a quiet, warm night here in Qland. I sit out side by the pool… img_5570

img_5579The critters of the night buzz, hum, and click. A constant cacophony of chaotic critter noises, eh?

I smile.

I recently was discussing the nasty topic of “politics” with a compadre. Now, my bud and I do not all the times see eye to eye. But we are buds. And as buds do you piss each other off. Sometimes we – either or- exaggerate for effect. Some times -either or- end up with sensibilities bruised.

Our topic was the questioning – right or left – of the political persuasion of a person in your life. And the effects therein. Golly, these past few months of political overload have sure been divisive.

I think of a niece of mine. Educated, professional, smart- smart, best mom in the world kinda gal. With strong liberal leanings. When she posted one of those “made to insult” sorta’ ersatz news items stating that we could blame the “red necks” for DJT. I had to point out to her that the majority of her male-blood-relatives were then blameable. (and a few of her female-blood-relatives too)

We are all in the same small boat. Being rude don’t work a’tall.

I am from the flatlands. Iowa. It is a good place. A good place to call “home”. And I acknowledge that there are many, many places throughout the USofA, where honest folk work hard for an honest wage. I learned respect at a young age. I know what an insult is and I know being insulting is rude. I know that rudeness can lead to an arse kick’n. I know that rudeness can lead to tears. In the right neighbourhood, rudeness can lead to lead poisoning.

Is one president that much better than the other? I know a good administration can be more desirable than a bad administration. I know that bad leadership normally do not end well.

I think of being at sea. Or better… on the Starship Enterprise… Capt. Kirk do not put decisions up for a vote. He do not make a committee meeting out of it all. no, he asks his various advisors/ specialists/ Spocks/ Scottys for their relevant assessment. From the info supplied by his advisors he makes any and all decisions.

Speaking of being at sea… ice-off-klbgaPacking to travel soon to board and enjoy ICE.

A chart I am getting ready… img_5566What is there about going to sea? preparing for the sea? Shaazaammm! Dunt know but there is something special in the air.

Maybe its my 52/52 Triton? img_5567

Just pulling her out from a long hibernation…img_5560

6T 395480 – From everything I can glean this number is a fake…img_5561(Like much of the newz these days) Somewhere in this old gal’s past her engine numbers were filed off and new numbers given. Everything about her mechanically makes her a 52.

The frame numbers are difficult to read. The research I have done leads me to believe the frame is a 52 wide-line Norton featherbed.

What is a 52/52 Triton, I hear you ask? Oh, and what is a featherbed? And, oh, I say, who really gives a shit?

About politics or motorcycles…

I do. About bikes, anyhow… This is a really rare beast. You get a triton when you combine the fantastic frame, called the “featherbed” made by Norton Motorcycles, with the ever speedy 650cc Triumph engine. The 52/52 is of course a designation for its year of production. So both frame and engine appear to be 65 years old.

Tritons were not a factory build. Every Triton on the planet was built in a small garage by a group of guys who loved speed. Frames from one bike, engines from another. No two Tritons are the same.

The fact that the numbers here appear to be faux, kinda makes sense. In years gone by many an engine or frame were “found” in unlikely places by unlikely peoples. If an engine’s history was a bit suss, you could change it by giving it an new identity, a new serial number.

You built a Triton for one reason only… for SPEED.

I have had this machine on the back burner for some time. To get the right “tins” for her I had to stand in line and wait for a master tin maker to produce what I required.

And they are ready. triton-tinsI’ll have them soon. It’ll take some time to get them sent over from the States. So I prepare the 52/52 to head up to Genius Jim’s place. He is going to start making this ol britt babe all shiny and new.

I do look forward to it.

The night sky here is rather quiet. Gemini and Cancer in the sky. Mars and Pluto setting. The sky is inky dark.

The pool is warm.

Life is good.

Posted by: nativeiowan | February 15, 2017

2017 V2.been a while

Where does the time go? Another year, another succession of days, weeks and, soon, months. Damn!

Ok, its been a few weeks, nothing drastic.

A period of intense heat for us here on the SunnyCoast.

A majestic full moon and a jewel filled sky.

One reason I may have been distracted is my 66 Trophy… maybe even infatuated… ???

Wow!img_5551

Genius Jim and baby Ed. Dig Ed’s t-shirt…img_5552

In my shed… a beauty of a Britt babe…img_5556img_5557img_5558

Posted by: nativeiowan | January 24, 2017

2017 v1.3

Damn, I say Damn!

Been a while. Been busy. Been real, fun-filled busy. Where is January going?

My Brother, The Rooster, was here with his family for a couple of weeks. 2016-12-27-19-34-49

Did not take pictures but he flew over to join a fun, kid filled NY Eve’s party we had. His two kids and Mrs all enjoyed the Sunnycoast.

A milestone for Grace and I… After 10 years raising two small boys, a) the boys are no longer small and  b) both Angelo and Mendoza now in Boarding School.

Almost done with the old folks… can you see the anticipation in the boy’s eyes?2017-01-23-08-35-05

Mendoza starting his career in Boarding school. Now in the 7th grade, he is learning to be a mature, cooperative student in a very competitive system.2017-01-23-10-22-15

Gotta luv a cool uniform…2017-01-23-08-11-47

Hans has been around… He spent a lot of time hang’n by the pool in his undies… 2017-01-20-17-13-07

I even got him on a bike… 2017-01-21-09-06-52

What else: Ice at anchor with Kolombangara in the background… nice PICT!ice-off-klbga

More later

Posted by: nativeiowan | January 15, 2017

2017 v1.2

Monday morn here in the land of Aus.We are watching the Packers v the Cowboys playoff game. So far it is quite entertaining.

I wish to report that I did my full day of 2wheeling Saturday. Left here about 8am, got home about 3pm. It was hot, hot, hot. I covered 600ks, stopped 3 times. Simply rode my bike.

I got home sweaty, dehydrated and sore. I weighed in 3kgs less than i left in the morn. 12 litres of beer and water remedied the weight loss. My leg muscles and gluten are very sore.

And life is good…

More vroom later

Posted by: nativeiowan | January 13, 2017

2017 v1.1

Mars, the star of the eve this eve, floats brilliant n bright to the west. He shall shine bright n long tonight. Neptune and Uranus accompany him into Aquarius.

The sky is rather quiet tonight.

It has been a long hot day.

Did I mention, Friday the 13th? Ring a Bell?

I completed my Australian motorcycle licence saga today. I can now, after a few months of being unlicensed, ride my bikes.

It is a long story… I swapped over from my Solo licence to an Aussie licence and in between  ended up without a bike licence for about 3 months. Have not really been on a long ride for fucking ages!!! Damn I miss riding!

So I sit here, 730pm on Friday the 13, 2017. A new year rings in and our superstitions continue.

A resident kookaburra makes noise down in the drainage. Frogs, very small frogs, add a vibration to the air. Fruit bats do their commute inland.

I find frogs in my pool. About the size of my thumb nail, some bigger, I am certain many species are around. It is interesting that the pool kills the toads ( we all dislike toads) but not the frogs. I rescue and release the frogs.

So after a frustraing past few expereicnes, I am happy to report that I have proven that I am a good poodle. This recent saga of jumping through hoops and wagging my tail and being polite and smiley in order to be legally licensed to ride my bikes… All I can say is “woof”.

It all began in September when I finally got my full-time, ol fart, retirement visa for Australia.

Another long story, but I had been hassling over my status in Aus for 6 year or more.

So I get my ol fart visa and then go into the local transport office to swap my licence over. To become a proper card-carrying Queenslander, MATE!

It was not easy. I had to pay some money and pass a test before I could pay more to apply to take the next text which included a road test. So I paid and applied and tested and got a Qlander licence. But only for automatic cars.

Now for these past 6 years I have been stopped, and I have been allowed to drive on my Solo Licence. Both cars, trucks and bikes. My Solo licence has been well recognised to  allow me to drive, ride and operate.

Not now, not after I got my first, basic, learners licence as a Qlander.

As soon as I went on to Qlander plastic, all else was null n void.

So I took a test to be fully certified to drive a car. Then another test to drive a car with a manual transmission. Took 4 trips into the local Transport Office. But I got my “open” for cars.

That was the easy part.

The bike licence was a drama. Normally one must wait and progress over 2.5 years to go from learner to open for bikes. For me that was tragic news. BUt I was patient, and friendly and had enough info to allow the TRFolks to exempt me through the draconian time requirements as I did my dance for them…

That was where I learned I was an exceptional poodle.

Golly, how many times have I been in the Transport Offices looking forlorn and cooperative. I am good at wagging my tail.

And jumping through hoops. To get a bike licence was pretty intensive…

I paid a fee then did 2 days of training and got my Learners licence. Went to the TROffices and got the paper work done. I did another day of training, paid a fee and did my provisional licence. Went to the TROffices and got the paper work done. Today I did another day of training and was issued my “open” bike licence, after I went to the TROffices and got the paper work done. I did not pay a fee because the guy doing the training and I got friendly and he commiserated with my drama so today was free.

I bought him a good bottle of whiskey as a present.

And I am buggered. So I sit here in the cool Qland air. The wind chimes giggle. The wind rustles the foliage. The Wolf Moon was full last night. It shall be bright and clear here, soon. Moon rise is 935pm.

So the first full moon of 2017 behind us. My MOJO has been messed up these past few days. I think it is because I do not take instruction well.

but tomorrow I shall remedy mu MOJO by going riding ALLL DAYYY…

More later

Posted by: nativeiowan | January 6, 2017

2017 v1.0

The Virgin Post…

The 1st for a New Year…

I’ll probably get unfriended for the “virgin” comment…

As the New Year begins, as the Old Year transpires…

What profound thoughts and words of wisdom can I offer my faithful readers?

Golly, gee wizzz… Theoretically we are all one year older, one more shared revolution round the big-star… One would assume, hope, even pray that some growth had been attained in the past year; AND, that there is some vision, some PLAN for the FUTURE…

I sit out on the terrace of my Queensland home. It is a nice place. A very nice place.

Lots of open space, beautiful weather, a relaxed atmosphere. Good people around.

A very slight drizzle is cooling my shoulders. I hear rain coming. It sounds like a bunch of termites in your tropical home. (How many of my faithful readers have lived in a topical home where, I swear to god, you could hear the termites munching away?)

The rain becomes a sprinkling on my keyboard. I am sitting at a very special teak table my buddy, Big Dave, built for me. He used old-world craftsmanship to produce a functional work of art. It feels and smells wonderful.

An umbrella keeps the computer from getting wet, though a single drop sits heavily on the mouse pad. My back is pleasantly damp in the cool night air.

2016 was an entertaining, event filled, and amazing year. All I can say is WTF? Who woulda’ thought? As we roll into 2017, WTF, who woulda thought!

So, rather than dwell on the past I would like to look into the future… what does the future hold? Who knows?

I do. I know that very soon both Angelo and Mendoza shall head off to boarding school. I know that Mendoza will cry himself to sleep for a few nights. I know he will find his feet and grow to understand and maybe even enjoy the “BOARDING” experience.

I know that Angelo will struggle to stay focused but I also know he will achieve some impressive results. It is his 3rd year at Toowoomba Grammar. He shall do very well this coming year.

I know I shall get ICE over from the Solomons – soon -. And I know that ICE shall change my life. ICE is a very cool boat… ice-2017This pict was taken by drone, at Olosana Island, Western Province, Solomons Islands on 26/12/16.

I know that Gracie has been smitten by ICE.

Gracie and Mendoza got to go home to the Solos for Xmas. She spent a fair amount of time on Ice and now thinks of it as “her own”. She is looking forward to Ice arriving and being able to start her catharsis from just an island girl to a yachtie.

I know Gracie is looking forward to being without the responsibility of having a “dependant”. She has committed the last ten years to raising Mendoza and Angelo. She has done a commendable job and deserves a break from the role of “Grand Mother”.

I am not truly convinced that she and ICE are the right couple. I kinda thought that ICE was my project. Not sure if Gracie being enamoured with “my boat” is a good thing. Time will tell.

The recent weeks have been pleasant. Bro, Rooster, and his family have been visiting. It is way cool. His kids, Eli and Elora, have been hanging with the boys. His wife, Melita, and Grace have been doing a lot of nothing together. Everyone is happy. Some times.

Did I mention that another Hemmer baby was born on the 21st of December, 2016?

Meet Miss Nova Hemmer… untitled-2-copy-2         Paul and Betsy’s 2nd daughter…She has my eyes…

So I know a few things. I have a few opinions, a few theories. I do have many hopes and dreams. I am still the enduring optimist.

Rain just came hard…

gotta run…

 

 

 

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