Thursday, July 31, 2008

Update 25

Kia ora whanau - what a terrible week last week was - not only do the All Blacks lose (badly! to Australia!!!!), my boys' football team played a shocking game and lost 13 nil, and...and I missed both episodes of Coronation Street. Tuesday I had the open evening at school (see my post on the shsprincipal blog for photos and details) but then I had the whanau meeting and rotary music night on Thursday. AAArrrggghhh!!!! So this post's for the old farts and me (no change there then). So we have some rock'n'roll, some sport (after that abysmal All Blacks performance last Saturday it'll be tough) and some other stuff plus nature watch and currently gooving.

For the music clip I can't go past the Beatles and this is a great one - my favourite Beatle song from my second favourite spot in London - for all the trainspotting obsessive Beatle freaks amongst you (yes okay - just me) this clip isn't the one used in the Let it Be film (where John forgets the words and mumbles):

Re the second most fav spot in London? I stood at the foot of this building (number 3Savile Row - just around the corner from the shops in Oxford Street), Jacky took my photo from the other side of the narrow street, I looked up to the roof (where this clip was filmed), and I smiled and I smiled (and I'm smiling about it now). to think that people walk past this hallowed spot in ignorance all the time.
I love the bit in the movie 'Let It Be' when all the shop girls and bowler hats chugging on pipes look around and start moving to the source of the noise - the Beatles on the roof of Apple hq - 3 Savile Rd., London.
Magic stuff.

The sport - after the awesome footage of France lately (I believe there was some kind of bicycle race on at the time), I've reverted to searching out the transfer lists in the premier league (couple of good youngsters signed by Arsene Wenger for the mighty Arsenal), marking off the calendar until the first game of the new season, and watching some cricket where the England team are playing catch up to the jappies - Freddie Flintoff is awesome!! oh joy - The Emirates Cup is on tonight - The Arsenal on our TV!!! Pity about the cricket though - England looked good in patches.

So we're now kinda updated on last week but wait there's more! More good news on Saturday morning - my boys' football team are back to winning ways - a 10 nil win over Francis Douglas Memorial College. And the All Blacks SMASHED EM BRO!!

Photo time: I've put a link to Keegan's photography site on the left hand side - check it out - some amazing pictures there. KW will be a bit coy (and thanks for permission to publish some pictures Keegan) but I agree with one of the comments on his site that he's got talent. Grandad will be proud.
Here are two pics to whet your appetite.

Just so Adam and Samantha don't feel left out there's a picture of Ad on the fridge (wearing a very familiar expression) and some snaps taken by Samantha in the UK.

Nature watch - the rain rain rain continues to come down down down (obscure Winnie the pooh reference there) so I took my camera outside and took some winter snaps.

Duckie (the cow) wondered what I was up to and was severely upset that I wasn't there to feed her. Actually the only time she's not mooing lately is when she's stuffing hay down her gob. The waterway is the release from the lake. A While back Jacky and I put some rocks down to make it look more like a riverbed - pretty cool huh. other shots are of the lambs - three so far. The white one peeking around her mum is 'Rain' the other two are called 'Muddy'(a ram) and 'Waters' (a ewe). I thoughtfully took some pictures of puddles - we've had rain non stop for about a three weeks now (since I returned from the conference). I also went down to another creek running through our border and then saw the horses (Cash and Maddy) trying to see what I was up to. The token arty shot is the rain into the trough with the horses in the background. Jacky's horse 'Will' or 'Willis' is the one on her own looking pretty bedraggled. I also wanted to do a time lapse on the daffodils so I'll aim to update these over the next month or so. As the photo shows they are just poking through the ground at the moment. Oh and that's Ellie - our cat looking like a drowned rat. Ellie is unlike normal cats in that she loves water!! Really. I've actually, I swear, seen her walk on water! She jumped into a trough and danced across the top of the water!! Finally - some pictures of the house in the rain with the buds on the magnolia there as well.

Thanks for the emails - I love all the comments and encouraging words. Denene sent me an awesome picture of Team Taylor (who's Denene/Team Taylor? - scroll down and check out the Whanau map on the left) and she is kindly allowing me to share it with all of you.

I forgot to include this great photo of Fran that Christine sent me too. I was scrolling through some old emails that I'd kept - actually looking for Fran's theatre site to put on my links (can you resend it Fran ? - I couldn't find it) so the photo will have to do in the meantime.

Okay - nuff awready - an epic one I know. Phew I'm exhausted! Till next time...

Love and Peace - W

Monday, July 28, 2008

Update 24

Jade read my last post and said,"Good but not really aimed at the younger age group" - ie hers. So in an unashamed attempt to secure her approval here are some things a 16 year old may be interested in. Apologies to Jenna first(the family hairdresser from Headquarters in New Plymouth) - I promised her a photo (taken on my phone) but our bluetooth technology is not quite working. We'll sort it out and post it soon.

First a picture from the ball that escaped me - shows Jade and some old guy that looks like me cutting a rug (oops that was quite an old expression..let's go with 'moshing').

Next a great promo from the Discovery channel. We've been watching some of the Olympics build up on Discovery (the architecture, the technology, the athletes preparation sort of thing) and Jade and I fell in love with this soppy sentimental video to the extent that it has joined our verbal shorthand (like routines from Seinfeld).

This is an older one but still pretty cool that we can all enjoy.

Finally some Ricky Gervais. The various podcasts (basically a radio show that is streamed to ipods) from Gervais and pals (Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington)have been doing the rounds with Jade's friends. I started listening to them at home and I laughed so much my face hurt. Here's a taster. Unfortunately you don't see them but that's true of the podcast too so enjoy monkey news.:

I'm off now to a whanau meeting at school and then the local rotary are hosting some of our music students. Ka kite a tona wa (see you soon).

Love and peace - W

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Update 23

I've been looking at some other blogs lately (it's been raining a lot!) and you'll notice I've added a few features on the left like the video wall and a links section. The video wall comes from daily motion (a site like youtube) but I'm liking it more than youtube - it's nicer looking but not as comprehensive as youtube generally. Just click on the vertical daily motion sign on the video wall to see what I mean. The blogs I'm loving at present are from unlikely sources - Carly Simon's (yes that Carly Simon of 'You're So Vain' fame) and WFMU - a New York radio station's blog. I recommend both. I even left a comment on Carly's site (yes we're on first name basis now!). What was I doing there in the first place? Well Carly is a guilty pleasure - and I was reading an old Mojo magazine and came across a reference to her blog. It's really good (really). The wfmu site (also found via mojo) had this great animated clip - I haven't given you too much of John Lennon on the blog yet because you all know my obsessive/compulsive relationship with Johnny Rythmn. Try this though - it's fun and it won all sorts of short film awards at various film festivals.

While I think about it - I also found some great live stuff on an internet archive site (yes - mojo good is mojo!!)- If you haven't seen this one it's great for all sorts of live stuff. I typed in Frank Zappa and got a great interview from a US show with Frank debating censorship. It's a hoot.

The annoying thing with blogs generally (like mobile phones) is a distinct lack of index - someone should (maybe someone has?) do a web site that is a blog index - there must be billions of em out there (some, like mine, may actually be

Okay back to some family stuff - the Samantha-a-thon continues with a recent photo(I had to blackmail her with the threat of putting a video of her and Jade miming "we built this city" via hair brushes on youtube).

I haven't done much nature watch stuff lately so here's a bumper crop. We have photos from the weekend of the mountain (I loved the clouds) and some slushy snow on our nature walk up the mountain (actually I went on the walk/took the photos while Jacky Michelle and Gavin huddled together in the car!!).

A lot of bird life around at present in the garden - fantails, wax eyes and yellow hammers (the last two are very cute small birds - the names are what Jacky and I know them as - not sure what their real names are). The yellow hammers stay pretty much around the lake and driveway while the fantails flit about the house gardens. The ground is still very muddy/water-logged and we have very little grass for sheep and cow and horses. The lamb (Rain) is now a week old and very cute and stronger - amazing how much they grow in a week. No other lambs yet but we have some huge sheep that must be holding triplets.

In my currently grooving section this week - Big Country live in Glasgow, and some Ringo solo stuff to celebrate his recent birthday - Happy Birthday Ritchie!!

All for now - love and peace - W

Friday, July 25, 2008

Update 22 - Joseph Campbell

Thought I'd spend some time on Joseph Campbell in this post (and then get to us all). As all my friends, students, family know I love Joseph Campbell's thoughts on myths/ Star Wars as myth/ and life in general (if you're interested visit the Joseph Campbell Foundation in my links). Campbell's 'Follow your bliss' catch phrase has been a constant in my life since I watched a series of interviews between JC and his friend Bill Moyers many years ago. Keegan reminded me of this in a phone conversation a couple of days ago (when I needed reminding - thanks KW). Here's a brief transcript from the book of interviews 'The Power of Myth':

BILL MOYERS: Do you ever have the sense of... being helped by hidden hands?

JOSEPH CAMPBELL: All the time. It is miraculous. I even have a superstition that has grown on me as a result of invisible hands coming all the time - namely, that if you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. When you can see that, you begin to meet people who are in your field of bliss, and they open doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be.

My general formula for my students is "Follow your bliss." Find where it is, and don't be afraid to follow it.

--Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth, pp. 120, 149

I love the idea of this and I've shared this whenever I can. The blog is now a natural place to share so...

The follow your bliss idea doesn't mean that you drift around and hope for the best or rely on other forces to provide your pathway. Instead it is a matter of identifying that pursuit which you are truly passionate about and attempting to give yourself absolutely to it. In so doing, you will find your fullest potential.

For me this meant a decision at age 12 to become a teacher. I'm no longer sure where this idea came from but that moment of epiphany has stayed with me. I love the fact that I am a teacher (still). Another Joseph Campbell catch phrase is ' through sacrifice - bliss'. Teachers serve the community.

Some more of JC:

JOSEPH CAMPBELL: If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Wherever you are -- if you are following your bliss, you are enjoying that refreshment, that life within you, all the time.

Now, I came to this idea of bliss because in Sanskrit, which is the great spiritual language of the world, there are three terms that represent the brink, the jumping-off place to the ocean of transcendence: sat-chit-ananda. The word "Sat" means being. "Chit" means consciousness. "Ananda" means bliss or rapture. I thought, "I don't know whether my consciousness is proper consciousness or not; I don't know whether what I know of my being is my proper being or not; but I do know where my rapture is. So let me hang on to rapture, and that will bring me both my consciousness and my being." I think it worked.

--Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth, pp. 113, 120

This last couple of thoughts sums me up. It reminds me of the end to Jerry Maguire (one of my Dumbo movies remember) -

Isn't it great to be able to say that!! And now the bit for you - maybe you also need reminding of this (a few of you from your recent emails to me seem to be at a particular crossroads with choices to make and you're struggling with a decision) or maybe you haven't yet found your bliss. Maybe it's time in your life to check those doorways again. Whatever..."Follow your bliss"!!

Love and peace - W

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Update 21

Hi everyone - it's been a week of thunder and lightning (massive!!). This week Jacky started back at work on limited duties, we had a lamb born in the teeth of a gale/hail storm (and her twin die in the same storm), and Jade and I started back at school. Unfortunately we didn't know the twins were born until too late, by the time we got to them one had died. 'Rain' - the live one - is doing fine so far. I check for lambs each morning before school just in case - just the one so far.

The videos attached are a mixture of things Samantha has posted on youtube (Leda pointed out there wasn't much about Samantha so it's overkill time). First a bit of an old one - filmed by Samantha nd her friend Flo in England 2006. Samantha has promised a picture from the Victoria University Ball this week so the vids will have to suffice in the meantime. Samantha is the one in the Indian head dress (don't ask)...on a lean.

For a more up to date vid here's 'commando cream' - Samantha filmed her friend Renee at Stratford's AMP and only appears in the bloopers but you can also check out Stratford's entertainment highlight of 2007, and then another one from England - featuring some of her friends. hope you enjoy them.

Pete Cahill is an old school mate who's a wiz with web site design - try this one just released a link to real estate for searching out new appartments: I had a great time fantasing about luxury choices on the site. I think he's still got things to add but it's really worth checking out at:

I recently saw the twitter idea in operation at my recent conference - I wouldn't mind having a go at this with any of you that want to join me. To explain - Twitter is a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing? It sits as an interface on the desktop. Go to for more info. I'll sign in if there are those amongst you who want to have a similar go and be my contacts. It may be great, it may not. Can you email me back or make a comment if you want to get involved with this? Groovy.

And speaking of groovy - listening to a double CD compliation of songs from Woody Allen movies called 'Woody's winners' (dad didn't think much of Jackie McLean but he'd love this one - heaps of his style jazz). My favs - Benny Goodman and his orchestra -Stompin' at the Savoy and Bing Crosby and the Andrew Sisters - Pistol packin' mama. On that (odd) note it's goodbye from him.

Love and peace - W

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Update 20

A week ago I was at Ross' place - we took an update photo of the Purdys and here it is:
Clearly we have a few people missing - Ross has the technology and promises to photoshop you all in!! You'll notice this is an attempt to recreate our 2003 Christmas photo but with Scott, Jacky, Keegan, Adam, Samantha and Jade missing it looks a tad sad. It's dark too - not sure why (taken with Ross' camera).

[This week - back in the 'naki]
The chance to take this and my other photo with dad came when I was in Auckland recently for the third residential in my first-time Principals course (for photo and rave up see my principal blog in my profile). I managed to ditch an afternoon for the family and have dinner with the Marbecks and a spot of shopping at Real Groovy (some more Dream Theater, and a Wishbone Ash DVD which is amazingly great!! Air guitar time aplenty).

Roger said I write a lot so I'll attempt to keep this post short so he'll read it! I'll also sneakily add a photo of him and Deirge with Guinness.

Congratulations to Greg Knowles who answered my profile question correctly (John Winston Lennon changed his name to John Ono Lennon). Means a new question!

Brief update - I've spent this week on holiday learning a mihi (speech) for a Ministry of Education Maori achievement launch next Friday, reading 'London' (by Edward Rutherfurd - great too - huge but I'm into it) and this week's Guardian Weekly, making a mounting block for Jade and Jacky to get on their horses and spent ages looking for a pair of fencing plyers!! Damned annoying - I had to buy a new pair. Of course now I'll bet I find the old pair.

Nature watch: we've had torrential rain for three days, then two days of fine dry weather, yesterday/today it's misty and drizzle (excellent!!).

Currently grooving (as I write this) to The Desotos (Rog gave me a copy of their CD - awesome NZ old style rock - reminded me of wide open spaces, mountains, the places where the long grass starts and endless NZ highways. Also (again) wallowing in the mandolins and throaty gusto of a Lindisfarne best of CD, and Muse live at Wembley - big meaty prog nonsense - I love it! Prompted by Leda's recommendation I bought Into the Wild by Eddie Vedder and she wasn't wrong - it helped that I watched the film when Adam was down last. He'd already seen it and recommended it so we watched it again and he wasn't wrong - I really enjoyed it as well - it's sad though and the melancholy comes through in the Vedder soundtrack.

Okay - I've written a lot again - sorry Rog - can't help myself. Time to go and enjoy the rest of the holidays.

Love and peace - W

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Update 19

After the frenzy of the blog launches (also did one for school and one for my English class - listed in my profile if you're interested) it's back to the relative calm of my regular updates. It's the start of the study break right now, in between terms 3 and 4 at school. Time for Adam to come home for a few days. We also picked up some more horses (Will and Honey join Cash and Maddie). The first two are on long term lease. Michelle and Gavin came out on Sunday and Michelle had a ride on Honey and Cash (and nearly fell off but eventually retained her dignity). Michelle is pictured with Will.

Sports wise my soccer boys had another win (8 -1 against New Plymouth Rovers). We're having a winning season so far (only two loses early on). I watched the Wimbledon finals - woo - what fantastic tennis in the men's final - unbelievable game. Spain are having a fantastic run.

Weather watch - we had a bit of snow in Stratford on Saturday (while I was reffing the soccer actually) nad it's been cold of course and pretty wet still. We took Adam up Mt Taranaki on Sunday and couldn't actually get to the top carpark cos the snow was beating the attempts to clear it. We went for a bush walk in the snow instead - great stuff.

In terms of music - currently grooving to some early Miles Davis as I type this, but some Jackie McLean is also in the disc changer. I'll put a link to a youtube vid of McLean for dad mainly. This clip and the next give a couple of tastes of his work (not actually the stuff I've got on CD which is less frenetic but you'll get an idea from these.

It's the sort of stuff he might appreciate. I've loved McLean's stuff for years because of the album covers (yes shallow but true), then I got into the music and to my surprise it's more to my taste than a lot of other jazz.

That'll do for the present - I'm up in Auckland this week for a first-time principal's conference and I'm looking forward to bunking (local lingo for wagging is actually 'ditching' these days) an afternoon to see dad. Ross and the Marbecks on Thursday (can you warn Guiness please Deirge).

Love and peace - W

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Update 18

This post is about a catch up for y'all - specifically some of the wonderful people who are our friends and family. I've had to track down some old photos for this exercise and I apologise unreservedly for the maybe unflattering nature of some of them but we can't rewrite history now can we! Here we are with the Marbecks. Roger and Deirdre are two of our oldest friends (late 70s!! That's when we met them, not how old they are!!!). We're pictured outside their front door in 2004 (still their front door come to that) just before we went to the UK to live.

An even older one is a family shot taken at Christmas - maybe 2002 or 2003 - not too sure. In the photo: at the back we have my dad (Graham Purdy), Jacky, me, Keegan and at the front Hayden, Lynda, Ross, then Samantha,Adam in the cap and Jade. Ross is my brother, Lynda his wife and Hayden/Scott - their sons. I took this photo partly because we are so terrible at getting everyone together - maybe your families are the same. You know the story - everyone moans about the fakeness of the family portrait and I had to bulldoze it through I seem to remember but..we haven't had a chance to recreate this scene since so with time this photo becomes more and more special.

More of the whanau are pictured here - Adam, Jacky, Michelle, Gavin, Pat. Michelle is Jacky's sister; her husband is Gavin and Pat is Jacky and Michelle's mum (my first of three mothers-in law!!). This photo comes from 2005 when Adam and Jacky returned from the UK. Adam needed to return and Jade/Samantha and I said a tearful farewell from Heathrow Airport. I like this photo - check out the picture on the wall by Adam - a wedding photo from 1984 of me and Jacky.

Next up we take a trip up north...way up north - Rochdale!! This is a special place - it's where my paternal grandfather came from (Harry Purdy)and it felt like going home when Christine took me for a look around. Here we have the Kirkhams in their glory. Lewis, Tom and Fran in the first picture and then Christine (their lovely mum) in the second with her friend Joe. Christine Kirkham is also a Purdy and my quasi big sister/cousin. The pics came from a Rochdale vs Charlton Athletic FA cup game we attended. What's that? You want a picture of me at that game wearing my Rochdale shirt. Oh go on then!

We don't seem to have too many pictures of Samantha - she's usually the one holding the camera. And until she sends me a better one I'll share this one - a pic of us in Singapore on route to the UK in 2004. Jade, Adam, Samantha and Jacky. Keegan at the time remained in NZ but joined up with us again in 2006 so he's missing from the scene.

Finally this is a picture of Jacky with Sallie Moore and Biddy Moore. Sallie is my mother-in-law #2 and Biddie is her mum. This shot was from last year when they visited us for a few days. The house behind is ours but before we painted it (ie it was yuck looking - now it's nice).

That'll do it for the time being...except I did promise Jade's ball photos.

I told you she looked gorgeous didn't I.
Take care until the next posting. Love and peace - W

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Update 17

There are two purposes to this posting - one to welcome new friends to my updates and second to place some recent pictures for your perusal. First up the fandamly without Samantha (who couldn't get from Wellington to Hamilton for Keegan's graduation)decamped to attend Keegan's graduation ceremony (that's why he's the man in the cape - Seinfeld fans will understand the injoke). You'll need to go back to an archived post for details but we have Jacky, Keegan, Adam, Jade, and me.
Then some other photies from our shoot. Enjoy!!

Okay so next we have some other recent photos from the House of Purdy in Stratford, NZ. These were added to an earlier update via email but now you get to see them (and others besides)on the blog. This is fun huh! I should really thank Annette for getting me started on this (oh oh you've created a monster - the kirkhams will get he +special guests injoke). I also went to a course at New Plymouth Boys' High on various ICT topics and saw how easy it was to do these things. I tend to wait and see with a lot of ICT but the blogs are terrific. Thanks for your comments so far too - this is an awesome way to stay in touch with y'all. Enuf blather - on with the photies.

And that'll do it for this posting. Take care. Love and peace - W