my life in the land down under

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Autumn Glory

Recently, over a family dinner, we were talking about photography and what to do with the photos we’d taken. Digital photography (for me) over the last 10 years+ has led to many unsorted photos being stored on my computer and rarely shared with anyone, which defeats the purpose of photographing. I want to share what I see with other people!

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Signs of Spring

There hasn’t been much time for updating the blog recently. In fact I was skiving off cooking dinner to write this! My workplace has been extra-busy and short-staffed over the past few weeks, so that has been taking a fair bit of my energy.

Things are looking up though – spring is on the way! We have recently had daffodils and strongly-scented earlicheer in the house, and now have freesias flowering so couldn’t resist picking a few for a vase. Some of the flowering cherries have also been in blossom (see photos below), though ours hasn’t passed the bud stage yet. A number of tuis were busy feeding as I was photographing the blossom but I didn’t have the time or the quick reflexes to capture them on camera – I did try.

The learning curve of photography, social media and life in general continues…

…I joined Pinterest and attempted to figure out how to use it (the reaction from the other member of the household was ‘oh no, not another time waster!!’). 😉
…visited the vintage camera section on TradeMe (our Ebay equivalent) for the first time in a while, and made two purchases – more on this at a later date.
…made a movie with my Nikon D7000 showing the faulty operation of one of the aforementioned cameras, edited it in iMovie, and uploaded it to You-tube for the seller to view. I have to acknowledge this was John’s suggestion and I couldn’t have done it without his help. He suggested I might make a You-tube star someday! 😀

This last week we have been busier than usual with social events.

…our camera club annual trophy competition – we didn’t have any entries in this year, but enjoyed the evening regardless; it was a good opportunity to catch up with friends and also get to know some newer club members.
…a work colleague’s farewell dinner – we ate at a Mexican restaurant for possibly the first time (yum). Watching food programmes like MasterChef has given me an interest in trying different cuisines. Now we just need the time and money to visit all the local restaurants! 🙂
…two family birthdays and a dinner out to celebrate – Happy Birthday to Levi for last week and Bryce for yesterday.
…we found out a few days ago that my eldest nephew has just got engaged – congrats to Josh & Mandy!

Flowering Cherries #1

Flowering Cherries #2

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Misleading Advertising

A few weeks ago we were misled by a sign at a Subway restaurant. We had spent several hours photographing hairdressing models and called in for a very late lunch. The sign near the door showed four meals, with $7 in large letters at the top left. We assumed the price applied to all those pictured and ordered one, only to be shocked when it rang up on the till as something like $11 – when we questioned it and referred to the sign, the staff were unsympathetic and said we were the only ones who’d had a problem with it. They would not agree the sign was misleading. The back of the sign (which we saw afterwards as we were leaving) was also advertising the $7 special but listed the meals to which it applied (it did not include the one we ordered). We left feeling annoyed and a bit stupid; and definitely not impressed with the customer service…

Then recently we heard of a woman being caught out by advertising in a shoe shop where there was a sign stating ‘Ankle Boots all under $100’. She took a pair to the counter only to be told the special didn’t apply to those ones. Apparently it only applied to the ankle boots on the table with the sign. However if it had said ‘All Ankle Boots under $100’ it would have been referring to every pair in the shop. She had been wanting to buy the boots for some time so went ahead even though she had to pay considerably more. How easy to be fooled and spend more than you intend!

Last Saturday night – my birthday – we ate dinner at an Indian restaurant. The food was great, the staff were friendly and the service prompt – then we went to pay for our meal. We had received an advertising brochure for Little India in our letterbox, which included a discount voucher. Here follow John’s comments, in the form of customer feedback on their website later that evening…

When is “Your Next Meal” Not your Next Meal?

I guess the answer is when you go to dine at Little India and you have a $5 discount voucher and they don’t want to give you $5 off this time! They stated that you have to have been here before as the voucher says $5 off your NEXT MEAL so you have to come back again to get the discount! So I said in return that in my opinion this is my Next Meal and if this is the way that you treat your customers this will probably be the last meal we have at Little India. (…edited…) When I questioned the people at reception they said that it was a very complicated idea thought up by the Einstein up there! Not sure where they meant by up there, Head Office or Heaven. They suggested we get on the website and give customer feedback and be nasty! We don’t want to be nasty but do wish we had gone to our usual Indian Establishment even though we would not have got a discount! We would appreciate your response.

We did see the funny side of this – Next meal? Next minute…!!

There was no response to our customer feedback until today, when John received a pleasant and apologetic email and the offer of a further voucher, which the manager assured us we would have no problem redeeming!

Has anyone else had experiences like these? We’d be interested to hear about them.

Little India


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Moving Day Minus One

Kelly & Levi are moving house tomorrow, so tonight was their last dinner with us.

Tomorrow is also my birthday.

So John cooked a lovely dinner with help from Bryce – they wouldn’t let me participate – and the five of us shared a meal together. We even sat around the dining table, which is rare in our house! Unfortunately Bryce’s Kelly couldn’t join us this time. If you are reading this though Kelly, we missed you and hope you are having a good time & learning lots, wishing you safe travel home in a couple of days.

The dessert was especially delicious: a mix of raspberries, mango, banana, chocolate eclairs, passionfruit ice-cream & cream (did I miss anything?) – tomorrow will be a big day so we will need all the sustenance we can get. 🙂

Thanks to all tonight for good food, good company and fun conversation – and for washing the dishes!

I gave in and opened a couple of presents, but have saved some for the actual day and to share with my Mum who celebrates her birthday on Sunday.