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(1)

Downsizing 3

Modern day war hero 6

Get your heart pumping 8

Rimu Grove Winery Creative Writers 11 Trans-Mongolian Railway 12

Clean heating 16

Issue October, November 2007

this issue:

Mudcakes

and Roses

Senior Generation Action and Issues – Nelson Tasman

44

All steamed up pg 4

Photo Tim Cuff

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Nelson’s Quality Provider of Home Support for

• Personal care • Home help • Nursing

Most NelMar services are FREE!

Phone 03 548 2009 Nelson or 03 528 0120 Motueka

Your support helps us make it happen!

Post to: Age Concern, PO Box 431, Nelson. Phone 03 546 7682 Subscription / donation

Name Address

Ph

24 hour emergency – phone your local office

Email [email protected] www.tasman.govt.nz

Sponsors

Cover Photo:

Writer Fiona Terry takes the family to visit Pigeon Valley Steam museum.

SportTasman

Hearing Awareness Week 5 - 9 November 2007

Power One Hearing aid batteries Six-packs at $5.50 (members) and $8 (non-members)

At Hearing House, 354 Trafalgar Square, Nelson

Hearing Help Classes

Do you have problems communicating with your family,

friends, on the phone, out there in the hearing world?

The Hearing Association is offering a series of five sessions to help you:

• Develop your communication skills

• Get your communication needs met

• Improve your confidence

• Share your skills and experiences with others with the same challenges

Venue:Hearing House, 354 Trafalgar Square, Nelson Date: 18 October - 15 November 2007

Time:Thursdays 2pm - 4pm (with a break)

Cost:$5 for Hearing Association members and $10 for non-members.

Please phone/fax 03 548 3270 to register interest (numbers are limited).

ALSO ON:

Spring has sprung and from October 1 through to November 4 2007 hundreds will be out walking in an attempt to reach their goals, at the same time embracing the Push Play philosophy. This is the second year that Spring Strut Stride has

taken place. Last year 87 teams with a total of more than 700 individuals were out pounding the pavement. “We’d love to see over 100 teams participate in 2007,” said Averil West from the Nelson Heart Foundation.

SSS is a ‘game’ where family, neighbours, workmates, club members, or any other group of up to 10 people, set individual challenges of how far they want to walk.

The total individual distances make up the team goal and then its simply ‘clocking up the ks’.

The resources that come in the SSS programme kit contain ideas to help with inspiration, motivation and monitoring. One team last year decided to set its goal to walk the equivalent kilometers to Gore – where a former workmate had transferred to.

To join the fun contact the Nelson Heart Foundation, ph 03 545 7112 or Way 2 Go 03 544 3955 or download a registration brochure from www.way2go.org.nz.

Strut into Spring

Mudcakes

and Roses

If you would a free copy of Mudcakes and Roses to be posted to you contact:

Tara Cater

Community Services Secretary Tasman District Council Phone 03 543 8578

Published by Tasman District Council Produced by Dry Crust Communications Enquiries Phone 03 544 4975

Fax 03 544 4951

Email [email protected] Advertising Phone 03 544 4975

Email [email protected] Mudcakes and Roses is sponsored by

Age Concern • Sport Tasman • NelMar Home Support Tasman District Council • Nelson City Council

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October / November 2007 • Murray Hart

Downsizing

how to get a fair price for your treasures

Living in your own home with all your bits and pieces around you is one of the pleasures of staying independent. However, there may come a time when you need to reduce the size of your home or move into sheltered accommodation and taking the accumulated treasures of a lifetime is not always possible.

There are several options available for downsizing when this time comes. How you go about it depends on your situation. Do you have family or friends who can manage the process for you? Is it important to you to oversee it, or would it be easier and less stressful to hand over to someone else?

The most important thing, if you involve other people, is that you can trust them. Choose a family member who has your best interests at heart, or a professional who knows what they are doing and is qualified to look after your interests.

Nelson’s Public Trust Office has three consultants who look after living estates, or in the case of a deceased estate, Estate Manager Carolyn Radcliffe will advise family members on their options for dealing with personal effects.

There are several options to consider. You can sell as a house lot, which is least stressful and time consuming, but make sure you get more than one quote. Most auctioneers will arrange transport, give you an idea of what price you are likely to get, and sort out specialist items that could go into an antiques auction.

You can also sell items through specialist dealers. This is more time consuming but you could get a better price.

If you have antiques or collectables this could be a better option.

Carolyn Radcliffe suggests it is always best to get quotes from two or three operators. “You should never work with just one dealer. Often their interests will cross over so there is a bit of competition, which helps to get the best price,” said Carolyn.

Maria Henare, of Nelson retro shop Eclectic said: “You should never throw anything out until you have had it looked at. You will usually get a better price from a good dealer than from a garage sale.”

There will always be something left over though, and this can be disposed of either through a charitable organisation, recycling centre or garage sale.

Some recycling centres and charitable shops will come and collect lager items that are in good order, such as washing machines and larger funiture pieces.

Garage Sales

Garage sales need to be well advertised and well organised. Make sure you have plenty of helpers and remember that the main aim is to get rid of as much stuff as possible, so price accordingly. It may be hard to sell up but it is better to find a home for things than send them to the dump.

Take time to plan and sort, and to advertise in local papers.

You can also list your sale on www.findagaragesale.

co.nz, which recommends you:

• Price all items

• Make sure all items are clean and in working order

• Have a live power point close to appliances for testing

• Make sure you display items well

• Have at least $50 worth of change and a calculator ready

• Group similar items in the same box with one price on it

• Make sure to lock all doors leading into your house on the day

• Ask some friends to help out

• Move or cover up items that you don’t want to sell

• Place tables so that customers can move around freely

• Have lots of newspaper ready to wrap fragile items

• Where possible, supply the original box and instruction manuals - things will sell for a better price.

Trade Me

www.trademe.co.nz is another popular way of finding a buyer for specialist items. It is a great way to reach a wide market. You may find yourself having to arrange shipping around the country, unless you sell locally to someone who can pick up the goods.

Bargain hunters love a garage sale.

(4)

If big Betsy could talk she’d have a few tales to tell. An old dame of the early 1900s, she took up residence in Wakefield 40 years ago and is now resting in a shed alongside some other revered friends.

Betsy is thought to be the most powerful portable steam engine in New Zealand. And she’s one of the lucky machines to have found peace at the Pigeon Valley Steam Museum.

She’s so loved that the museum has not only had a whole shelter built and named in her honour, she’s also had a book written about her history.

There are now more than 10 working steam engines at the museum, which was first started in the late 1970s by farmer Ross Higgins and some friends.

They wanted to make sure some of the old steam machinery wasn’t lost to the scrap heap. And while Big Betsy now has a well-deserved rest, some of her companions at the museum are still forging

ahead, restored and ready for action.

One of the

first active machines many visitors encounter is the 1910 John Fowler traction engine, which on one of the museum’s full steam days powers around the grounds, towing a trailer which visitors can ride on. In its early working life this was used to power threshing machines and chaff cutters before being put to work driving a sawmill. It was later rescued from scrap and had already been restored when it was donated to Pigeon Valley.

With eight horsepower, it eats the equivalent of an apple crate full of wood to keep it powered up for one

day.

As well as the Steam Museum the site, now known as Higgins Park, is also home to a Rural Life Museum, Vintage Engine and Machinery Club, Rover Car Club, Historic Transport Museum, a babysmith’s and a working sawmill.

We visited one Sunday in the rain. It was the promise of a ride around the grounds on the Baigent Bush Tramway that won the hearts of our one-year- old son and three-year-old daughter, neither of who had ever seen a steam engine before. Previously used by New Zealand Railways to transport maintenance staff along the lines, the jigger consists of a single cart with safety bar.

The children were thrilled at the sight of the traction engine passing in the opposite direction, plumes of steam issuing from the funnel.

Whenever we looked, the overall-clad

volunteers seemed to be tinkering with engine pieces, oily hands and looks of determination on their faces. These are the band who make the museum possible - an army of 40 on the membership books and a dedicated dozen turning up regularly to add to the restoration works.

On the museum’s ‘steam’ days they stoke the boilers at 7am to get full steam power driving the cogs and turning the wheels.

Alongside the working models are those that have been pieced back together but are no longer active.

Big Betsy is one of those. Only two of her kind were ever made, with the other ending up in Australia. Both built by Marshall & Sons Ltd of Gainsborough in England, it’s thought she arrived in New Zealand in 1906.

Her services were employed in sawmills until she was damaged in a fire and finally abandoned in 1959.

It wasn’t until 1977 that Ross Higgins and fellow enthusiasts looking for a steam engine to drive the sawmill at Pigeon Valley stumbled across her at the former mill at Rahui. Eventually, they managed to transport her to the site. Higgins, who had allowed the sawmill to be established on his land, had been the initial driving force behind the recovery. Sadly, the team has never managed to get Betsy running but it’s a project that, given the manpower and funding, could be looked into in future.

In their search for a suitable engine, the enthusiasts had acquired tonnes of other equipment - and so the museum began.

Also in Big Betsy’s shed is a gigantic marine boiler once used to power the steam engines that would pump fuel for the ships at Wellington’s Miramar Wharf. It is believed to be the same as one used in the Titanic. An ammonia compressor once used as part of the refrigeration system at Ashburton’s freezing works has also found its way here.

In a neighbouring workshop is the enthusiasts’ latest project - the restoration of a 1904 traction engine rescued from a former sawmill in the Rai Valley. To date it’s had $10,000

All steamed up

at PigeonValley

By Fiona Terry

Sadly, the team has never managed to get Betsy

running but it’s a project that, given the manpower

and funding, could be looked into in future.

(5)

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spent on it, as well as many man hours, and work is on-going. Allan Palmer, Secretary of the museum is confident it can be brought back to life with a little more tender loving care.

The Rural Life Museum holds some fascinating surprises, like the exhibit of the tiny wooden two- piece building that had once been

Wakefield’s Johnson’s Saddlery Shop.

This was built across the boundary between two adjoining sections and since neither owner would sell to the other, the building was sawn in two along the survey line and the pieces jacked apart.

The Historic Transport Museum is home to a replica 1920 Rolls Royce

armoured car. Made locally by Nelson Military Group this type of vehicle would have been used in Egypt, Iran and Iraq during the oil struggle of the early 1920s-30s.

Nearby is an engine from a model T Ford – one of the vehicles to have superseded the days of steam.

Nostalgia is being kept alive for us to enjoy and pass on to future generations.

Big Betsy would be proud.

The museum holds ‘steam ups’

on the first Sunday of each month and also every Sunday in January. The grounds are open every day from 9am-4.30pm.

Entry by donation. The other organisations at Higgins Park have special events throughout the year. Admission is $2.50 for adults and 50c each child.

For more information call the Museum’s secretary Allan Palmer on 03 544 4652.

A traction engine at Pigeon Valley Steam museum.

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• Would you like your driving professionally assessed for little or no cost?

If you answer yes to any of the above then the

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Courses are available regularly in Nelson and Richmond For more information and to reserve your place call:

John Steel (Instructor), phone 03 547 4010

(6)

When John Howard left Waimea College as a 17- year-old to study accountancy and law at Nelson Polytechnic he could never have guessed the path his career would follow.

Twenty four years later he is Commanding Officer of the First Battalion Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment, the largest land command in the army.

As well as being in charge of 600 combat trained personnel and having seen action in Bougainville, Bosnia and East Timor, he now also holds a New Zealand Order of Merit.

Ask what’s been the highlight of his career to date and he’ll say one was seeing the people of East Timor gaining independence. Howard commanded a combat team of 280 personnel to East Timor in 1999 after the disruption following elections. At the time his rank was Major and his company was the first to arrive. During its nine months there it successfully implemented a peace keeping force that was to stay for a number of years afterwards.

“It’s very moving to have old women and young children thanking you for allowing them to live,”

said 41-year-old Howard. “I’ll never forget going to a town that had been razed to the ground and finding people who were thankful to be alive. It’s a privilege to be able to protect them and give them hope.”

It was for his leadership in this operation that Howard was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit in the 2000 Queen’s Birthday honours. “For me the award was recognition of my soldiers’ achievements in very difficult and demanding circumstances,” said Howard, who is now based at Linton Camp near Palmerston North.

It wasn’t always a pleasant task though. “I lost soldiers, including one of my senior Non-Commissioned Officers. That was a low, but I’ve been conditioned and trained in dealing with these types of situations.

When you are leading in combat you can’t afford to be seen as anything other than a leader and that means not getting involved on a personal level emotionally.

People must have confidence in you. You need to be able to stand up in front of hundreds and tell them you want them to follow you and have them to do so willingly.”

In Bosnia Howard was employed as a Divisional

Liaison Officer for the British Division. The post saw him living with the Muslim Corps Commander, overseeing the implementation of the 1995 Dayton Peace Accord.

“During my time there I witnessed inhumanity like I’d never imagined,” said Howard. “There were some harsh realities, like seeing the absolute worst of people and coming across mass graves. I found it more shocking that this went on in a modern world.”

His introduction to the army was as an 18-year-old when he enlisted into the Territorial Force after a student friend already involved said he thought he’d enjoy it. Since one of the hobbies he’d enjoyed with his father had been shooting, range practise didn’t phase him. In fact, that weekend Howard realised he’d found his true vocation. He left his course at the end of his second year when he was selected for the Regular Army as an officer cadet.

“I’d suddenly become aware of this whole military world that I’d previously known nothing about. I enjoyed the physical and mental challenge that forced me to push myself and found that I wasn’t too bad at it either.”

As Commanding Officer no two days are the same.

“The way my day runs depends on where I am in the world,” said Howard, who likes shooting, fishing, cooking and reading in what little spare time he gets.

“If I’m at the camp I start at 6am with a 30-40

Local lad

is a modern day war hero

By Fiona Terry

Commander John Howard

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October / November 2007 • 7 minute run. I’ll be in the office for 7.30, starting

with a meeting with key staff, before possibly later giving a presentation to the soldiers. The PT for the day might be something like a 12km hike with 40kg packs or swimming for 20 minutes fully clothed to get resistance training and then there’ll be paperwork to catch up on.

“Another day I might be welcoming personnel back from overseas tours – some recently returned from Afghanistan, the Soloman Islands and East Timor.

Sometimes I might be out in the field for days with the soldiers, other times I

might be in Wellington meeting with senior officers or government officials.”

Soon he’ll be visiting troops he’s shortly to deploy to Afghanistan.

Howard is single and says he’s made a conscious decision to dedicate himself to his work. “This certainly isn’t a nine to five job. My friends would call me a military moron but you don’t get to the position I’m in now unless you’re focused on what you do.”

He has happy memories of Waimea College in Richmond but admits he wasn’t so committed to his role there.

“I was a lazy student but in the sixth form worked hard for my exams,” said Howard, who grew up with parents who have been supportive in whatever he’s done. “I ended up with some of the highest marks in the region.”

One thing his job’s made him very conscious of is how privileged he is to come from New Zealand. “You can walk at night without fear, go to the supermarket knowing it’ll be well stocked and enjoy running drinking water from taps. I’ll never take simple things like washing machines and clean sheets and clothes

for granted!”

Howard’s also a qualified military paratrooper.

“I’ve had experiences most people never will.

I’ve been on a nuclear aircraft carrier, jumped out of airplanes over many different countries, worked in the Colombian ice fields with a specialist climbing cell, travelled to many countries for training, including the UK and a number in South East Asia.”

So what are his thoughts on the future? “Being a soldier is a young man’s job and at 41 I’m getting old by army standards,” he laughed, “but I’d like to think I’ve got one more operational tour in me yet.”

I witnessed inhumanity like I’d never imagined.

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(8)

It’s easy to see why Cherie Thomas’s aqua aerobics classes are so popular She started running them nearly three years ago and the word has got out.

According to many participants, Cherie is the Mrs Motivator of the ASB Aquatic Centre in Richmond. The smiles on the faces of all those involved say it all.

People of all ages and sizes gather to strap on the waist flotation belts and take part in what, for many, has become a real highlight of the week. As those in the class strive to keep fit with a series of exercises done to lively music, Cherie is on poolside to demonstrate and call words of encouragement.

From jogging in the water to stretches and lifts, each session gives a gentle workout for those with low fitness or confidence or those recovering from an injury or surgery. The goal is to By Fiona Terry

Mrs Motivator will get your heart pumping

Aqua aerobics has been the saving grace for retired electrical consultant Gary Howard.

Nearly two years ago he suffered two strokes that left him

temporarily paralysed on one side.

Although his mobility came back after about a month, Gary suffered further minor strokes and has had problems with coordination and balance.

“My son is commander of NZIR Number One Batallion and the physical training instructors in his regiment recommended swimming would be good for recovery,” said 65-year-old Gary. “They talked about classes and I was delighted to find out about Cherie’s.”

Gary used his Green Prescription to attend his first class and was surprised to find he was the only man. “It didn’t faze me at all though, everyone was really friendly,” he said. “I just kept thinking that the exercise would

help me get well, that’s what drove me on.”

He found the first class quite tiring and didn’t quite manage the whole 45-minute session. “The next class I was able to last till the end,” he said. “I found the exercise was great and it was also good for my mind, helping to keep my brain

active, which I think is another reason why I no longer suffer from repeat minor strokes.

“The water gave me confidence because it helped support me if I lost balance. Following the movements really helped get my coordination working again too.”

Friendships have been forged too through the classes. “Some of us go to the spa afterwards and have a chat, which is great. There are more men now in the class and hopefully

more will join in future. Men seem to think it’s not macho enough for them but when I leave the pool I know I’ve worked up a sweat. My advice to others would be to give it a go. Anything that can help improve a condition has got to be worth a go.”

Together with regular support

and encouragement from the Field Officer from the Stroke Foundation, Anne Marie Fowke, the classes have been of great benefit to Gary’s health.

Gary’s goal is to get healthy enough to visit a grandson in Poland whom he has never met.

“The classes and support from the group are really helping me to work towards that goal and make achieving it really possible.”

Saving grace

Friendships have been forged too through the classes.

Cherie Thomas

(9)

October / November 2007 •

Mrs Motivator will get your heart pumping

Life has taken on a whole new sparkle for Anne Newport since she was offered a Green Prescription.

Having battled with her weight and two medical conditions, her confidence was low when a nurse at her medical centre suggested she could benefit from the prescription.

An assessment was organised, followed by a meeting with a support worker, who helped Anne to draw up a plan. “It was just so motivating,” said 37-year-old Anne.

As part of her plan Anne decided to start attending aqua aerobics classes at the ASB Aquatic Centre in Richmond.

“I was very nervous about joining though, partly because of the thought of wearing a swimsuit.

Also because it was all so new and I wouldn’t know anyone else the thought of getting involved was really daunting.”

To help overcome her fears, aqua

aerobics instructor Cherie Thomas phoned Anne before the class and arranged to meet her outside the pool.

“Without that I probably wouldn’t have

made it to the class,” said Anne.

“Cherie made me feel completely comfortable about getting involved in the class.”

Since then Anne’s self-esteem has grown in leaps and bounds.

“Being a mum and juggling work too means that I rarely make an opportunity to do something for myself. This has made me see that I am worthy of an hour to myself and I know that the lift and the confidence it gives me makes me a better parent.

“I feel so much fitter now. There are about 15 of us regulars and we all laugh a lot, spurring each other on and teasing one another to make

light work of the exercises. Cherie’s such a great teacher – always smiling, encouraging us along and not averse to us teasing her either.

She makes the classes really good fun.”

As well as her monthly assessments with her Green Prescription Support Worker, Bee Williamson, the aqua aerobics classes have given Anne just the lift she needed to get back on track, enjoying life to the full and managing her weight.

“I’ll definitely keep attending the classes even once my entitlement to a reduced rate expires. I feel so much more confident and positive about the future. I’m a totally different person now – this has turned my life around.”

have fun while improving muscle tone and fitness.

“Aqua aerobics works on lots of different muscles, including the abdominals,” said Cherie, who has a certificate in fitness and exercise science. “Exercising in the water helps your general fitness. The whole time you’re moving the water provides resistance, which means muscles are working and the heart rate is increased. It’s great exercise for anyone with joint or weight problems because it’s low impact and the water helps support body weight.”

What’s more, it’s a great social opportunity, with a fun, supportive group who all encourage each other. Cherie said those in the class choose the speed at which they exercise and the intensity at which they train. “I tell

Whole new sparkle

everyone it’s important they work at a pace they feel comfortable with rather than trying to keep up with the person next to them.

“It’s all about having fun and helping people feel better about themselves.”

Cherie runs two classes that are discounted for Green Prescription holders – Wednesday at 10.30am and Friday at 12.15. The classes run for 45 minutes and are open to all ages.

For more information about Green Prescriptions talk to your doctor or contact Sport Tasman on 0800 228 483.

(10)

for everyone’s sake to recognise, accept and deal with hearing loss sooner rather than later.”

Tinnitus is also a fairly common affliction, often described as a constant ringing in the ears, but can also be likened to chainsaws, cicadas or even trains. Tinnitus affects about 17 percent of the general population in New Zealand but in the 65-plus age group the incidence rises to about 33 percent. An interesting and useful book on tinnitus (and Meniere’s Disease) is available at Hearing House.

The Nelson Hearing Association is continually working towards better communication, increased awareness of hearing impairment and providing services and support to members and the general public. It offers a free hearing test and independent information and advice about hearing problems. Clinics are held in Nelson, Richmond, About 400,000 or 10 percent of

our population suffer from some form of hearing loss, with people over 65 three times more likely to have hearing loss than younger adults.

Some common social problems for people with untreated hearing loss include:

• Isolation and withdrawal

• Inattentiveness

• Bluffing

• Distraction and lack of concentration

• Problems at work

• Problems participating in social gatherings or meetings

• Problems communicating with family members

• Loss of intimacy, sexual problems

Most cases of hearing loss develop gradually so the symptoms are sometimes difficult to recognise. It is possible to be hearing impaired for many years without realising it. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should have a hearing test to establish whether treatment or hearing assistance is recommended.

• It sounds as if people mumble to you

• You have difficulty hearing the television - do people say you have it turned up too loud?

• Difficulty hearing in small gatherings, eg. workplace meetings or dinner parties

• A frequent need to ask people to repeat themselves

• Communication difficulties in noisy environments, eg. in a car or at a party

• You no longer hear your watch ticking, water running or birds singing

• You have difficulty hearing the doorbell or the telephone ringing

• You have to lip read the people who talk to you

• You feel that you must really concentrate to hear someone talk

• Family, colleagues or friends say that you might have hearing loss

The last symptom is particularly common.

“It is often the people around you who will be the first to notice you have a hearing loss as it can impact on their daily lives quite significantly,” said Ana Parkes, from the Nelson Hearing Association. “It really is best

Is hearing loss affecting your life?

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(11)

October / November 2007 • 11 The winner for the October/

November creative writer competition is Penny Hall from Takaka.

Penny will receive a bottle of Rimu Grove wine.

We have been receiving some great stories and poems, please keep sending your entries in to us at:

Rimu Grove

Creative Writers Series Dry Crust Communications P O Box 3352

Richmond

Synchronicity

The phone rang just As I walked towards it Synchronicity or what

Hey I’ve poured a glass of wine So have you

Well, I’m making a stir-fry Yes, with garlic of course, What fish and chips, Is that the difference Hey, vive la difference!

Anyway, it’s been a good day Annie-cat’s asleep on your chair I’m playing jazz -

You’re watching cricket - Viva las differences.

That fly’s come in again I’ve lit the candle anyway Cheers, buenas noches!

Rimu Grove Winery

Creative Writers Series

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It also has a wide range of helpful devices such as telephones with amplification, headphones for the TV and audio loops, which are available for trial and purchase.

The Hearing Association is a non - profit organisation. Its mission is to support all those affected by hearing loss. Membership of the Association has many advantages, including discounts on hearing related products, as well as social interaction with other hearing impaired people and a regular newsletter.

An Ultravac machine is available to remove moisture from hearing aids, a major cause of damage to aids, and they can clean your aids, renew tubing and, if necessary, arrange a quote for more major repairs.

Hearing House is located at 354 Trafalgar Square, Nelson. Open Monday to Friday 9.30am – 12.30pm and 1.00pm – 4.00 pm.Phone 03 548 3270 or email hearingnelson@xtra.

co.nz.

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Having avidly watched the last series of Intrepid Journeys, when favourite TV personalities swapped the comforts of home for a no frills experience to off the beaten track destinations, I was inspired to start planning an intrepid journey of my own - three weeks on the Trans-Mongolian railway starting in Beijing and finishing in St Petersburg. Three weeks would give sufficient time to break the journey at key places along the way – Ulaanbaatar, Irkutsk, Moscow – and sample, albeit briefly, what each region had to offer.

After several months of planning and a 20 hour flight from Auckland I was met at at Beijing airport by an enthusiastic young man answering to the name of Bruce. On the journey from the airport Bruce was keen to tell me about the improvements to the transport network that were taking place in Beijing and also about the millions of trees a year that are being planted across China to combat global warming. It goes without saying that China’s hosting of the forthcoming Olympic Games in 2008 was foremost as a topic of conversation wherever we went in Beijing and the sense of excitement among the local people was infectious.

As I was travelling solo I did not get to meet any of my fellow travellers until the pre-departure meeting held on the first evening after my arrival in Beijing. There

Beijing to St Petersburg

on the Trans-Mongolian Railway

Temple of Heaven By Bella Griffiths were sixteen of us in the group (including Joe the Tour Leader) - an interesting mix of Kiwis, Aussies, American and British; with ages ranging from 28 to 82.

We were to be living shoulder to shoulder for the next three weeks – bound to be a challenge!

Our arrival in Beijing coincided with the Chinese public holidays which meant crowds everywhere, especially at the major attractions we were hoping to

visit - Tiananmen Square, the Temple of Heaven and the Great Wall.

Tiananmen Square (which ironically means Gate of Heavenly Peace) is synonymous in the minds of most Westerners with the deaths of hundreds of students in 1989 at the hands of the Chinese army. Located in the centre of Beijing it is one of the largest squares in the world, holding up to one million people, and during our tour it was filled with families enjoying the late spring weather.

The Temple of Heaven, our next stop after Tiananmen Square, was built in 1420 AD during the Ming Dynasty.

...and for the not so faint hearted an opportunity to try grilled snake,

scorpion, cricket....

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October / November 2007 • 1 Each winter solstice the Emperor and all his retinue

would move through Beijing to encamp within the temple complex, wearing special robes and abstaining from eating meat. Here the Emperor would pray for good harvests as well as offer sacrifices. As we wandered around the numerous temple buildings our local tour guide Patrick supplied us with a wealth of information about its history. I was amazed at the detail that went into the planning of the buildings, with many numerological and symbolic features being incorporated. The massive posts inside the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest each have a meaning. Some represent the seasons and others the months of the year. Many Chinese people visit the temple area regularly for social gatherings and we saw numerous groups enjoying board games, playing music and singing as we made our way around.

A visit to Beijing, however brief, would not be complete without a trip out to the Great Wall, probably the most famous of all Chinese landmarks. We journeyed to Mutianyu, a two hour coach ride from Beijing.

Construction of the Mutianyu section of the Great Wall was started in the Northern Qi Dynasty (550 - 577) and further work was undertaken there in the early Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644). The purpose of the wall was to deter invading hordes from the north. However, gaining access to the wall after disembarking from the coach is a modern day assault in itself. Numerous stallholders line the approach, each clamouring for your attention and eager to sell you some souvenir or trinket, the best price for which requires advanced haggling skills. Having run the gauntlet of this army of salesmen (and women) there was then the matter of a thousand or so knee crunching steps still separating you from the wall’s lofty parapets.

I found out too late that for the less able (or more out of condition as in my case) there was a cable car option to the top. However it is a truly special moment when you finally walk on the ancient stones of this historical icon - the views are stupendous. For the downward trip

you can either walk, take the cable car or for the more adventurous there is a toboggan run not dissimilar to the luge at Rotorua. One of the octogenarians on our tour opted for this later route – good on ‘em!

Being a bit of a food buff I was pleased that there were plenty of opportunities in the evenings to sample the local cuisine, which was both delicious and extremely reasonably priced. My visit to Beijing had to include trying its most famous specialty dish, Peking Duck. I was glad that one evening we were taken to a restaurant specialising in this culinary delicacy, which surpassed all expectations.

During our two days in the Chinese capital we also managed to fit in a tour of the hutongs (a maze of ancient alleyways formed when rows of traditional courtyard residences were built back in the 14th century);

visit a silk factory; and for the not so faint hearted an opportunity to try grilled snake, scorpion, cricket and all other manner of unsavoury offerings available at the daily night market. I wisely decided to stick with the Peking duck.

Some in the group also managed to find time to watch a performance by the Chinese State Opera, observe a demonstration by the Shaolin Monks or enjoy a visit to the Beijing State Circus.

However, all too soon it was time to leave Beijing and on the third morning of the tour we had an early start for the station and our first encounter with the Trans Mongolian Railway. The next instalment was about to begin.

Bella Griffiths is a health administrator from Somerset, England, who recently spent six months living in Murchison and working at the Information Centre there. She chose to return to the UK via the Trans-Mongolian Railway, and we will feature the second instalment of her journey in the next issue of Mudcakes and Roses magazine.

Chef preparing Peking Duck Great Wall of China

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Pumpkin Soup

1 onion, chopped

1kg pumpkin (about ½ large pumpkin)

4 cups water or stock

½ teaspoon nutmeg 1 teaspoon curry powder Peel and chop the pumpkin into large pieces. Roughly chop the onion.

Cover the vegetables with water in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil.

Simmer for about 20 minutes or until pumpkin is very soft. Puree

Soups are great comfort meals at all times of the year.

Here are some of our favourite recipes, taken from the Work and Income Great Little Cook Book.

Serve with scones, with toast or with fresh, crusty bread. Garnish soup with fresh herbs, grated cheese, or natural yoghurt. You can make croutons by

brushing toast bread with oil. Cut into cubes and grill or bake for five minutes.

Stock adds flavour to soup. Commercial stocks and tinned soups are usually very high in salt. Reduce salt by using less stock, a home-made stock or adding other ingredients to a tin of soup.

Soups for you

in a food processor or mash with a potato masher.

Variations:

• Spicy soup: Replace spices with 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon cumin and 1 teaspoon coriander.

• Carrot and pumpkin: Use less pumpkin and add a few carrots.

• Pumpkin and potato: Add a potato for a thicker soup.

• Creamy soup: Add 1 cup of low- fat milk at the end. Heat through but don’t boil.

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Inland Moutere Highway • 5 minutes from Motueka (03) 526 7447

Where class and country meet...

Fresh, local food and wine.

Specialties: vodka cured salmon, thick seafood chowder and freshly baked flat bread with olive oil and dukkah.

Peaceful and inspiring indoor/outdoor dining, adjoined to historic Riverside Community

– enjoy a walk around after your meal.

Opening for the new season Thursday – Sunday R E S T A U R A N T

Recommended by North and South magazine and Cuisine magazine

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October / November 2007 • 1

Healing at Home?

We can help you through it.

Heaphys

Home Support

Phone 03 547 5552

Chicken Stock

Chicken bones or leftover roast chicken carcass

2 stalks celery, including leaves 2 carrots

2 unpeeled onions 3 bay leaves 6 cups water

Roughly chop the vegetables. Put everything in a large saucepan.

Cover and simmer gently for 1 hour. Cool and strain the stock through a sieve.

Leave in any chicken meat but throw away the bones and vegetables.

Chill the stock overnight. Skim the fat off the top. Stock can be frozen until needed.

Quick minestrone

1 can tomato soup 2 cans water 2 potatoes 2 carrots 2 onions

200g pasta (or leftover cooked pasta)

fresh parsley

Finely chop the potatoes, carrots and onions. Roughly chop the tomatoes. Place the soup, tomatoes, juice from tomatoes, water and vegetables in a saucepan.

Bring to the boil. Add pasta and simmer until pasta is cooked. Add more water if needed. Sprinkle on fresh parsley.

Variation:

Add cooked dried beans.

Fish Chowder

2 tablespoons margarine 1 onion, finely chopped 4 potatoes, peeled and cubed 1 carrot, peeled and cubed 2 cups water or stock 2 cups low-fat milk black pepper

300g white fresh fish

2 tablespoons cornflour or flour fresh parsley

Melt margarine in a large pot.

Lightly cook onions. Add potatoes, carrots and water or stock. Simmer for 10 minutes or until potato is almost cooked.

Cut fish into cubes. Add to soup.

Bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and add the milk.

Do not boil again or the milk will curdle. Mix the cornflour to a paste with a little bit of cold milk. Stir through the soup until it thickens.

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Nelson City Council’s Clean Heat Warm Homes programme is designed to help low income householders replace open fires, which will be banned from 1 January 2008. Nelson City Council is offering financial assistance to replace open fires with an approved cleaner form of heating, and to install ceiling and underfloor insulation and draught-proofing.

If you are a homeowner, Nelson City Council will fully fund this work if you:

• own your own home, and

• use an open fire in the main living area as your source of winter heat, and

• hold a Community Services Card

If you are a private landlord, the Council will provide 50% funding for this work if your tenant:

• holds a Community Services Card, and

• uses an open fire in the main living area as their source of winter heat

Open fires include: open hearths, visor fireplaces and Jet Masters but do not include wood burners, fireplaces with a door or pot bellies.

If you don’t have a Community Services Card and don’t meet the criteria outlined above, Council has arranged a special discount for a heat pump, house insulation and weather sealed chimney with Air Con Nelson Ltd and Absolute Energy Ltd and

with the assistance of Nelson Credit Union.

To qualify for this special discount you must:

1. Own your own home (can be a landlord); and

2. Have a functional open fire in your main living area; and

3. Not have already received Council assistance for fireplace replacement in the house.

The discount will be available until the end of this year (although actual installation work can occur early in 2008).

To find out more about assistance available call Nelson City Council on 03 546 0423 or visit the website www.nelsoncitycouncil.co.nz.

Nelson City Council

offers assistance to replace open fires

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October / November 2007 • 17 Tasman District Council is working hard to minimise

air pollution caused by smoke emissions in Richmond.

Wood burners, coal and open fires are major causes of poor air quality during winter and Council has adopted new strategies to deal with the problem. The installation of new wood burners in Richmond into either new houses or in any house that doesn’t already have a wood burner is now prohibited. An exception is made for new pellet fires, which can be installed in any house.

Council wants to reduce the total number of wood burners in the Richmond airshed, and is strongly advocating that people upgrade their house insulation and consider upgrading to a clean heat system or a modern more efficient clean air wood burner, which will also improve air quality.

While the use of open fires and old inefficient wood burners is not banned in Tasman District, if you are buying a house in Richmond you will be unable to use a wood burner that is not a modern clean air model after a house changes ownership. The buyer and seller of a house are encouraged to discuss options for home heating at the time a house sale is being negotiated.

Council is also putting a big effort into education - it is critical to reaching air quality targets that the levels of fine airborne pollutants (PM10 ) being discharged into the air in Richmond is reduced. This can be achieved by better burner operation as well as by reducing the

number of burners in the air shed.

The Council is providing information to all wood burner owners about using your wood burner without causing excessive smoke. A brochure is available from Council that explains how you can “enjoy the heat not the smoke” and avoid complaints from your neighbours about excessive smoke. Part of the Good Practice work being done by both Tasman District Council and Nelson City Council is the Good Wood Scheme - in this, wood retailers have joined with Council to advocate good wood burner operation through the use of dry firewood.

More information is available from Mary-Anne Baker on 03 543 8486

Tasman District Council

targets clean air for Richmond

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As a club we are committed to providing a programme that will meet the many leisure and recreational needs of seniors in the Nelson Tasman district.

Give us a call – you never know what might be going on!

Contact Christine or Derek on 03 547 2660.

Regular activities

Scrabble Club - Meets Mondays 1 pm at for a fun friendly game

Mahjong Club - Tuesdays 1pm. New and experienced players welcome

500 Club - Meets Wednesdays 1pm for a fun friendly game. New and experienced players welcome

Tuesday and Thursday meals - 2-course meal at 12 midday for just $8, everyone welcome. Bookings required for small groups, otherwise just call in.

Cribbage - Thursdays at 1 pm

Monthly Movie - Tuesday afternoons. Phone to check what is on.

Line Dancing - Wednesdays at 10.30am. Gentle dancing to enjoy

Gentle exercises - Thursdays at 11am. Come and have some fun and do exercises at the same time Strengthening exercises - Wednesdays at 10.30 am.

Slow smooth and controlled movements, great for improving bone density and muscle strength

New for the summer

Walking group - Tuesdays at 10am leaving the Stoke Memorial Hall. A casual walk to various places of approximately one hour

Painting watercolors and acrylic - Mondays 10am at the Stoke Memorial Hall cost $3

Papercraft - Thursdays 1 pm. Scrapbooking, cardmaking and more. Come and learn some new techniques and skills.

Tai Chi - for absolute beginners. Wednesdays 10 am at Stoke Memorial Hall

Housie - last Wednesday and 3rd Tuesday of the month. $5 card - win lots of money and have some fun.

Stoke Seniors Club – Social seniors moving forward

This section lists programmes and events on in the Nelson Tasman region.

If you would like to publicise your event or activity, send your details to:

Mudcakes and Roses

PO Box 3352, Richmond, Nelson or email [email protected] or fax 03 544 4951

Events

Christmas Dinner -Wednesday 28 November. $18 members $20 non- members starting at 11.30 am.

Phil Steans in concert -Wednesday 24 October at 1.30 pm

WI Choir and Ukuleles Ladies Concert - Wednesday 17 October 1.30 pm in the Social Seniors Hall

Souwesters Concert Band - Thursday 11 October at 1.30pm, Social Seniors Hall

Nelson City Social Brass Band concert - Wednesday 3 October at Stoke Memorial Hall. $2 members $4 non-members

Men in Hats - Wednesday 14 November. Great entertainment!

Hope-Ranzau Womens Institute

Meets at 1.15pm the first Wednesday of each month at Holy Trinity Church Hall, Dorset Street, Richmond.

Visitors always welcome.

For more information phone Brenda 03 544 5872.

Housie Evening

Everyone is welcome to come to Housie and have fun.

Stoke Rugby Clubrooms, Neale Avenue, Stoke Wednesday nights, 7.15 pm – 9.45 pm.

Great cash prizes and meat raffles. Two-line Bingo. Supper, tea/coffee and bikkies. For more information contact Buddy 03 547 3230 or Anne 03 547 6987.

Senior Adults Gathering

A monthly event for Senior Adults is held at Bishopdale Community Anglican Church, 238 Vanguard St, Nelson from 2.00 - 4.00pm on the first Tuesday of each month.

The afternoon provides speakers, entertainment and activities followed by afternoon tea.

A warm welcome is extended to all Seniors to share in friendship and activities in a safe environment. There is no charge. Phone 546 9057 for more info.

programmes & events

Deadline for material for December/January Issue is 12 November 2007

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June / July 2007 • 1

Club 50

Oct / Nov / Dec

Club 50 is a social group of mature adults looking for companionship, recreation and enjoyment. We welcome new and existing members. For programme enquires or to register please phone Paula on 03 544 3955.

All our activities start at The Tasman Recreational Resource Centre (TRRC or Town Hall) at 9 Cambridge Street, Richmond unless otherwise stated.

Car pool recommended costs;

$2.00 for 0-25kms $3.00 for 25-50kms

$4.00 for 50-70kms $5.00 for over 100kms October 2

Dellside Walk with great views of Richmond. Meet at TRRC 9.30 am.

October 9 - Edward Baigent Reserve Ramble Walk followed by morning tea at Paula’s house.

October 16 - Helping Nelson City Council with the hanging baskets. 1.00pm – 3.00pm. Meet at the TRRC at 12.15pm to carpool into town. Please note the different time and please register for this activity with Paula (03) 544 3955.

October 23 - Trip to Rabbit Island for a walk and BBQ lunch.

October 30 - Let’s head into Nelson for a spot of Christmas shopping and some lunch at one of the cafés in town.

November 6 - Christmas card Scrapbooking. Bring a plate to share for morning tea.

November 13 - Brook Waimarama Sanctuary, let’s follow the walking tracks and see where they take us.

November 20 - Tasman Bay Roses visit. Bring your own lunch and we can sit in the gardens and enjoy the flowers and beautiful aromas.

November 27 - Pot luck lunch and movie. Bring along something to share. Held at TRRC 10.00am.

Nelson Highland Dancing Organisation 50th Jubilee

We are hosting the New Zealand 18 and Over Dancing Championships on Friday 19 to Monday 22 October 2007.

A reunion will be held on the Friday evening at Nelson College Hall, Waimea Road, Nelson, followed by the official opening ceremony.

We cordially invite all people associated with the NHDO to register. Costs: adults $25.00, under 18 years $10.00, includes entry to the reunion evening, complimentary drink, supper and official ceremony.

Enquiries to Jim Cochrane, phone (03) 547 8129 or email: [email protected]

Motueka Recreation Centre

– where it all happens!

50+ Classes are held Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 9.30am with Anna. A fun class especially programmed to suit those who are more senior. If you think this is for you, feel free to pop along and try out any one or even both classes. A great routine set to great music, low impact with less intensity but nevertheless you still go away feeling that you’ve had a good workout. Runs for about 1 hour. Cost: $3

You can also give badminton a try. Games are held at the centre from 7 till 9 every Thursday evening for players of all ages and all levels. New players are always welcome. The court fee is $3 and if you want to hire a racquet it’s only $2.

How about hitting the gym? The Recreation Centre Gym is open from 9.00am till 9.00pm Monday to Friday, 9.00am till 4.00pm on Saturday. Help is also available for beginners.

If you need more information on any of these classes please feel free to contact the Motueka Recreation Centre on (03) 528 8228 or fax (03) 528 8560.

Reunion

On 16th, 17th, 18th of November 2007 Whareama Rest Home will be celebrating 50 years of Care and Service to the Elderly.

Former employees and volunteers are invited to register their interest by contacting Whareama, Rest Home, 81 Neale Ave, Stoke.

Tel: 03 547 7786 Fax: 03 547 6174

Email: [email protected]

Nelson Dance Along

October 13th and November 10th, 24th

Time: 8.00pm to 11.30pm at Richmond Town Hall Admission: $3.00 Member, $3.50 Non Member Enquiries to: Rosalie Winter Phone 03 548 2236

Age Concern Activities

Tuesday and Thursday Drop In Centre, 9.00am- 12.00pm for cuppa and company

Wednesday 9.00am-2.00pm, Various activities are held. For full programme please contact Elaine Mead, 03 544 7624.

Friday Age Concern Easy Exercise by Freda Beloe.

10.00am-11.00am cost $1.00, morning Tea afterwards Advocacy Service: Contact Elaine Mead 03 544 7624 Accredited Visitor Service: Contact Catherine Findlay 03 544 7624

Prevention & Early Intervention of Elder Abuse:

Contact Jim Davis 03 546 7682

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Dancing in Richmond

Dancing is a great social past time that provides plenty of benefits. People of all ages and abilities can dance, but perhaps the most significant argument in its favour is that it coordinates the brain and the body.

The differences in the various styles of dances such Standard Ballroom, Latin American, New Vogue, Rock- n-Roll, Salsa and others develops memory muscle which in turn educates the head, body, arms, legs, and feet, resulting in improved co-ordination. Regular dancing improves muscle tone, assists weight loss where required, corrects poor posture, assists breathing, and is an activity to be enjoyed individually and collectively.

Group classes are offered in ballroom, Latin American, Basic, Rock & Roll and Salsa as well as Latin-in-line and street dancing. Come and give it a go!

Richmond Dance Studio, Richmond Mall, phone 547 4863

Crafts courses in Tahunanui

Tahunanui Community Centre is holding introductory workshops for various popular craft activities.

The two-hour sessions cover the basics of these fun crafts.

Our social group “Friends and Neighbours” are local residents who come along on Wednesday afternoons and will be the core participants of our sessions.

14 Nov 2007 Card Making with Estelle Courtney 1.00pm to 3.30pm cost $5.00

Contact: Tahunanui Community Centre, 61 Muritai Street, Tahunanui phone 03 548 6036

Richmond Waimea Toy Library

Gladstone Road, Richmond

(Jubilee Park behind the Badminton Hall) Toys for Newborn to Age 5

Casual membership for grandparents available Opening Hours:

Tuesday and Saturday 9.30am – 11.30am Thursday 6.30pm – 8.00pm

Phone Sue 03 544 6609 or Jan 03 544 0452

Healthy Hearts Club

If you have concerns about your cardiac health, this group is for you!

The Healthy Hearts Club meets every Thursday morning from 9.30am till 10.30am at St Thomas’s Church Hall, Motueka. The cost is just $4 a session and it includes gentle exercise and advice on healthy living from a number of interesting guest speakers.

For more information of the Healthy Hearts Club in Motueka, contact Cindus Colonna on 03 543 2033.

Nelson Fifty Plus Walking Groups

We welcome you to the Fifty Plus Walking Groups and trust that you enjoy the activity and fellowship that we share together.

We offer farm walks, mini walks and fortnightly tramps for people with a higher degree of fitness and stamina than the average walker. Drivers of all cars are asked to notify the leader of the day of their intention to walk and to confirm meeting place. The distance shown against each trip is the approximate road distance from Nelson to the starting point of the walk and return. Passengers are asked to contribute to the cost of petrol at 8 cents a kilometre. Come prepared for adverse weather and remember no smoking or dogs on walks please. Anyone wanting to find out more about the Nelson Fifty-Plus Walking Group is welcome to call the Chairman, Noel Brown (03) 544 2286 or Secretary Carolyn Brown (03) 544 2286. Walk cancellations are broadcast on Classic Hits 90FM and More FM.

October

4 9.30am Richmond Hills Champion Road, M 18 9.30am Louis Creek, M

November

1 9.00 am Brooklyn Valley Farm, M 15 9.00 am Courthouse Flat Wangapeka, M 29 9.30 am Canaan Moa Park, M.

December

13 10.00 am Combined Picnic Rabbit Island For more information about mini walks contact Gwenda Wallace, phone 03 544 5307, or Gwen Wills, phone 03 547 3315.

Fresh Focus

We are a voluntary organisation formed in 1977 to arrange speakers on wide variety of subjects. Our talks last 45 minutes plus 15 minutes for questions. They are divided into five sessions throughout the year – three to five talks in each – avoiding the school holidays.

Mondays 10.00am

Suburban Club, Tahunanui

All welcome, no membership, admission $2.

Flyers are distributed to local libraries.

Next sessions:

October 5, 8, 15, 29 – 11.00am Peter Coubragh, who is building the Chinese Garden by the eel pond, will be showing us around. We will take our own lunch along for a picnic.

After paying expenses, any surplus funds are donated to the Hospice

References

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