the alfmeister

a figment of reality's imagination

Archive for the tag “CHCH”

Maintaining perspective on things…

A nice wee touch from Google today...

A nice wee touch from Google today…

I would reserve Friday for a quip, a slight, a dig at other people, institutions, or processes, and despite today being the second anniversary of those who died in the Christchurch Earthquakes, this won’t be any different…with a slight twist.

My involvement during those darks days is common knowledge to anyone who read my blog but whatever happened to me physically or psychologically pales into insignificance to what the families of 180-odd families went through. And one of them has become dear to me by a rather odd sense of fate.

I text Rachel last night to tell her that even though I was in another city today all my thoughts were with her and her kids who enter their second year without their husband, father, friend, and this morning her response was as like a hammer blow between the eyes;

“…you know I have woken up this morning feeling sad…sad for the people who haven’t known big love in their lives!”

So, this is my little piece of advice to you all, not that I am one to impart such knowledge *ahem* by way of a strong woman;

You have one crack at it people, and if you’re lucky enough to be happy in life and in love, acknowledge it, embrace it, and share it.

If you’re not, do something about it.

And if work bothers you, or results in a test, or pissed off over a talkback caller, it is worth noting that if these are the only things in life that bother you it can’t really be all that bad now, can it?


We are no more at risk from smoking as we are behind the wheel of a car, from choking on our muffin (close-run thing that!), or from clipping our toe nails…but if the earthquakes have taught us nothing, your time can come anytime, anywhere…

Ake Ake Kia Kaha, Christchurch (and NZ)…

PS…just to make it clear, I’ve not gone all religious or anything…just saying.


Food Review…a beer and a curry.

Himilaya’s – Indian at it’s Best

Thanks to Jason and Karen for organising a night out for us, and while none of us had eaten at this place, via a voucher on GrabOne off we went on Saturday night after me and Jase had finished a game of cricket.

This place is probably the only establishment still open in the block just north of Durham St on Colombo St and as you walk to it there is a surreal feeling as you glance at those buildings around you destroyed from the earthquakes of late 2010 and early 2011.

But once inside you feel you know you are in the right place – smallish inside compared to other Indian restaurants I have been to, it has a nice ambience and classy feel, and when a place is almost full, alongside those coming in for their takeaway you know you have a pretty good curry-house.

Seated at our table we got another pointer towards success – NZ’s current PM is framed on the wall eating at Himilaya’s which truth be told is his favourite eating place when in CHCH…and with his money it’s not like he can’t be choosy. Read more…

Where oh where has my lovely city gone?

Dated 29/09/11 (or at least when I got it)

Looking at CBD from the Nor'west directly towards the Sou'east...windy road in foreground is Oxford Terrace, "The Strip"



Looking at this brings home two things; first is how violent the forces of the earthquake were and secondly, how bad a shape the Garden City is in. For a lot of people there may not be the instant recognition and understanding viewing what looks like large car parks, but even for me, here only two years after so long away, I can’t help but be shocked every time I realise the empty space (and spaces) looking back at me. While just out of shot to the bottom left, I assume it is intended that the PWC Building is scheduled for destruction, and seeing the corner of Armargh and Colombo where Westpac, Winnie Bagoes, and a noodle house once stood is uncanny as I used to walk across that intersection almost daily. If I got some of the buildings wrong let me know, or tell me the others, just going by memory.

One good thing, we get a new city and new persona, but that is too late for some.


Friday Drinks…Harrington’s Saddler

I was intending to review another beer today, in fact the same that I had shoved to the side last week when Harrington’s Anvil stormed into my life. Well, Harrington’s have rudely stepped in again and shoved the other brew to the dark recesses of time, maybe never to be seen again…wooooooo…

A bird in the hand is worth a few down the gullet!

Anyways, wandering into the Belfast bottly I felt like getting me a dozen of the Anvil, however was told by my friend on the seas that it isn’t yet available in bottles, still only in draught. I didn’t feel like a pub pet, but wandered aimlessly in the cold store looking for new prey. It seems I have ‘sampled’ and reviewed most of them here. But then fate dealt its hand again. The ex-sailor offered a sample from the tap of two lagers – a 5% called Finest Lager and a 4% Saddler (watch out for DB!!). Now if my senses were awoken last week with Anvil, they were damn near shooting out of my orifices with this puppy!

Going down easier than a two-dollar whore on base, this drop has probably shot its way into the top ten beers I have ever had. And like its subtle taste, it will subtly get you pissed, so be wary; I downed 9 that night, and being of European lineage, the following morning as sweet as a sweet thing in the sweet shop.

Like any sane person, I cannot drink from cans (not like those heathens of Lion Red, Lion Brown and Double Brown), but will do if my drinking sanity relies on it. Bottles are by far better for beer, but there is a distinct chasm even between bottled beer and straight from the tap, and this beer very much typifies that, but not so bad a taste as between bottle and tin.

This beer MUST be well chilled to best appreciate, and would be at its startling performance on a hot day round the BBQ…bring on the summer I say!!

What they say; Saddler Lager 4% – Whole Malt Lager
A whole malt lager with no additives. It’s a light bodied brew with a toffee flavour that is evenly balanced with a hopped edge. Very crisp and very clean makes this lager very popular. Voted 4.33 out of 5 by its followers.

And being my last day at work (so still looking if anyone’s interested – probably shouldn’t ask in the middle of a beer review!), I will be popping in to purchase another box to celebrate my new-found freedom. Buy Red n Black!

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