open, honest, and sometimes acerbic commentary: may I draw your attention to my more forthright blog “Cassandric”.

I created it to replace one of my others (Forestall). Forestall tried to say what I think but kept running into very lengthy screeds—so I popped it off and replaced it with Cassandric. I try (and sometimes fail) to keep Cassandric under three hundred words.

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So if you want to pop over for a quick look (or to stay) you’re very welcome:


CASSANDRIC    click <—— there and explore. Or not.


But please: ‘Follow’ only if you really want to—no more ‘spam’ followers. (And no, I won’t trade—I don’t play “I’ll follow you if you’ll follow me”.)


though—if you want reinforcement of contemporary ‘group-think’, or if you want PC (politically correct stuff), or if my opinions of beliefs (there’s thousands of them, all the One True Path …) offend: don’t go there.

Your call …



WPC: Rare 2

When it comes to honouring the deceased it’s rare indeed sometimes to find absolute honesty.

And yet … it happens—


—such candour is refreshing indeed.

(Wow … only another 46 to go, and this rediscovered ‘Drafts’ folder will be empty.)






WPC: Frame


considered the aeronautical aspects of a bumblebee’s life?

Really … the hours of study (meteorology, basic physics, navigation and stuff) and the many hours of practise, the endless ‘circuits and bumps’—you honestly think that all these things come naturally? Hold me tight …

I got to pondering as I was watching a bee being busy being about his work. Her work—


—and in the course of observing I discovered that the above is in effect a standard approach for a bee about to ‘land on’. They really do go all droopy and sort of sidle up to their target. After my bee had departed I went over to a foxglove and scored a ‘bee’s eye view’ of the landing pad. And yes, one might call it inviting …


And I suspect the hairy hairs sticking up are to notify whatever intelligence runs the plant that a welcome visitor is in attendance (or to tickle the bee, so that it comes back again).


through the park a few weeks ago I surprised a bunny—

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—but armed, dangerous, loaded for something bigger I moved on. I had bigger game in mind. Llama. Cheeky Llama. Coffeeeeeeeeee …

(Please forgive the next few posts—I discovered that a folder I never was there now holds about 48 would-be ‘drafts’ that I thought I’d actually posted.

So I’m going to ditch a few, amalgamate a few, and drip-feed a few … please forgive if I double up.

I wondered why I never scored any comments—thought I’d have to change my style …)






Hah! Exasperation! We went to Gemstone Beach at Orepuki today. First real outing since we got that horrible flu (togetherness goes no further than this, I tell you—sitting up in bed barking and honking at each other like seals) but now back on deck and ready to fight tigers kittens.

Oh, yes … exasperation … comes in when I try to tell people what the storms do to our beloved beach (one of my ‘things’ is trying to capture my philosophy of Time on film in pixels) no-one ever believes me, but in the course of snapping some changes today I scored this once-was-a-gate in a field. Over the years the field has dropped out to become beach, but the gate remains. For now—

gate of time 1.png

—and looking at it I recalled a shot I’d taken a year or so back, same place—

gate of time 2.png

—and nary a Photoshop tweak in sight—what you see in both these shots is only a fraction of what I saw. Now project those pebbles (to a depth of what … twenty feet, thirty feet?) along the entire length of Orepuki Beach and we’re dealing with, what? A few hundred thousand, a few millions of tons of rocks shifted? Mother Nature is a powerful bitch, I tell you—certainly she has my respect.

We may go back to the same place often but we never go back to the same beach. Can’t be done …

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Above is how we found the ‘hole in the wall house’ today.

Below is how we found it a year or so back—

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—those tyre tracks are from the quadbike of some guys prospecting for gold.

On the beach.

This beach.


It’s rich in gold, but not many can be bothered putting in all the time and effort to get it out. It comes in layers of surface black sand that look for all the world like washed-up oil slick; but by the time you’ve extracted your gold you’d have been better off peeling spuds in a hotel …

And that’s the first time I’ve ever seen any hint of a claim on the beach.

So I Googled it, and came up with the usual testaments to the efficacy of todaze edjicashuns in a relly intristin forem which i wen googled won of them numbas on that sine post.

Sure beats running with scissors …




in the park

yawwwwwn.png I was trying to shoot the spring bouncers but kept being interrupted by (a) capricious breezes and (b) a park employee earning his crust by doing his professional thing.


involved driving a wee mechanised set of wheels with a big hydraulically powered bucket doo-dah on the front and a “Here I come!” flashing light on the top.

He was tidying up after the latest instalment of professional vandalism—I’m convinced that the park management is determined to turn what was once delightful (dare I say it?) European woodland into open savannah.

Perhaps they won’t stop there, perhaps we’ll be getting first of all prairie (followed eventually by desert) …


his industry got me to musing about economics and what I might have told my kid if ever I’d multiplied. Actually … about the whole concept of employment.

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So trying to photograph my daffies, fluttering and dancing in the breeze, I timed it to capture the motorman as he scampered by with heavy log in his jaws.


(I imagine) by the hour. Probably a flat rate with occasional overtime. I have no idea of his qualifications or talents but he certainly had enthusiasm and seemed to my untutored eye to be a doing a dam’ fine job.


that if a labourer is worthy of his hire he must sell his employer more than just time. The employer here obviously thinks he’s getting his money’s worth so something must be increasing the value of the mere time being purchased—in this case the driver’s abilities with machinery and his own investments in his training and qualifications.

So qualifications increase potential value of a worker. Not only training, the guy must have a degree of talent and ‘attitude’. No good the employee being highly qualified if he doesn’t give a damn and simply turns up to reach a minimum standard output.


I ran out of daffodils (actually I ran out of battery—I’d forgotten to charge it) I’d pretty well worked out a whole lesson on why the young should go to school determined to work hard but I’d neglected to make notes in the field—ever tried to recall that powerful dream of the night before last?

Anyway, I went to the Cheeky Lama and had another of their lovely coffees. Unlike almost anywhere in Invercargill, these folks listen when you try to describe what you want … and deliver. This is what they looked like yesterday—

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—and the snap up top of me enjoying a coffee is from their blackboard. There’s also a blazing log fire in winter … and no, I don’t get paid for appreciating good service (they don’t even know I post on the web).




WPC:Frame 2

or is it 3? ( HEADLINE: Absent-minded old goat loses count.)


in the bus …

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… such a natural frame, who could possibly resist? This was just after I’d had a coffee at ‘The Cheeky Llama’ kiosk in Queens Park. When I mentioned it to The Spouse later a wee spoonerism crept in and she cracked up. A bit puzzled, again I told her about this great brew I’d had at ‘The leaky Charmer’ … we’re still friends. Just.


I revisited something I’d stumbled across some weeks back. Took me a while to find it again, what had been a whole colony in full bloom has obviously been discovered by enthusiastic vandals, carcasses all over the place … but for whatever reason they’d overlooked this wee bugger—

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—against which I leant my portable pocket calculator. Spouse bought five of them at two bucks each (she knows me) and already I’ve managed to lose misplace two of them. They will, of course, turn up. One day … in the meantime the craggy visual delight behind the calculator is a puffball; sole survivor of the species in this location for this season.


can it be done in camera, as it were, by the camera itself? I love my camera—took me ages to find the ‘selective colour’ thingy, which for this snap of St Mary’s Basilica in Invercargill I set to red just to see what might happen. This happened—

St M's Basilisk.png

—and I’m as delighted with it as if I’d done it meself. (Oh, yes … framed by trees …)

And now to bed, to sleep, perchance to dream, and see what Challenge they dream up for for this week. Brrrr …



WPC: Frame

Perhaps the best way to respond to a Challenge is for the challengee to simply accept—to pick up the gauntlet and flap the arrogant challenger right in the chops with it; or …

… to trample it in to the ground whilst running like a rabbit out of harm’s way. Sometimes a timely gallop can be the wiser course, actually—graveyards are littered with the bones of brave (but a wee bit dim) men. These days you may put me down for rabbit with a clear conscience—I defy any man alive to catch me when I feel the need for distance.

So, on the subject of ‘frame’: although there’s no frame visible in this next snap it’s what caught my eye not too many months back when bimbling through Queens Park and lamenting the savaging of yet more trees.

Who the guy obviously enjoying his lunch break is I have no idea but it all came together for a snap. Perhaps the rotunda columns/pillars frame some trees beyond, I’m sure we can make it legal somehow.


I’ve managed on occasion to get some wildlife into the snaps. I have a nice one of a startled bunny leaping when I disturbed him, luckily my reflexes were quicker than his … and I also have this one. Jumping rabbit wasn’t framed, but this one (different day, possibly same bunny) was though—

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And in a different frame of mind, we have a real ball with this sphere of clear glass full of moulded-in bubbles. The colour comes from refracted table top and or background, I assure you that it was crystal clear. But the bubbles and stuff frame the other contents nicely enough.



Before Christmas last I was passing along Esk Street and in a shop window was a real television adapted for advertising purposes. No blasted diodes or pixely things here, it was all done by electron beams and phosphors using the dreaded cathode rays—a bit fuzzy sometimes and on occasion we had to work at it, but REAL television in those days~! And it was fun when going to bed at night switching it off … you got to see the whole picture collapse into a dwindling blob in the middle … aaaaah, real TV back then!


Through a glass darkly (or on reflection a TV of the sort I remember fondly; take it for all in all, you shall not see its like again).