Saturday, April 23, 2011

Big weekends

Last weekend was quite busy, starting with an AWF&G council meeting from which it became further apparent that there's not much new thinking going on. Leaving the meeting at 3 I followed AJ over to Napier, arriving before guy & Dickie. AJ was on business in his Beretta role; having to attend a H&F shoot. Guy, Dickie, me, Clive & James Needham were on a different mission - to shoot the first game birds of the 2011 season. Hawkes Bay had moved the opening of their upland season forward two weeks. Given time between picking up the gun, I was only too happy to get an eye opener on high fast flying Tuna Nui pheasants. Last year I promised myself that Í'd return and return I did. What a fantastic place, steeped in history, lovely terrain and massive drives. I seemed to do quite well with my pegs too; some days you win, some you lose. I started quite well too, was quite chuffed to begin the day with 3 doubles, then well... you know, I got a bit ordinary before scraping myself up and getting it back together. Highlight for me was a new drive they'd put in, I dropped 6 doubles in a mad mad 7 or 8 minutes of mayhem. There was quite a pile of dead birds behind me by the time I'd finished. Monday and I worked in Napier before hitting the road, just ahead of a fast approaching front that dumped snow on the Desert Road - I had visions of a chilly night on the Kaimanawas, but got through sweet as.

Yesterday was maimai dressing day, always a biggie. With many hands we managed it quite nicely and all the maimais are looking good.

Only 2 weeks to go now. Batteries for flappy dekes are being recharged now, and final presps being made. May have to try some of this Remington HD that seems to be the big thing, apart from "Hypersonic".....

Roll on 7 May.

JB Fan Club prepping the field dekes

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

15 years between drinks - reminiscing

Shame I didn't get a photo really. 2 weeks ago on a wet windy Mt Maunganui Friday night, we realised that it had been something like 15 years since we'd all been in the same place. We were there to celebrate Brian's Stag Do and when I arrived to big old fashioned man hugs and back slaps, it dawned on us that it had been a long long time between drinks. "We" being Andre, Milo, Brian and me. After uni our lives sort of diverged, Brian heading to the UK where Mother of JB Fan Club and me caught up with him in 2001; Andre comes and goes as he's pursued a career as a top notch crew man on international yachts, Milo setting us his guiding business in Tauranga and me pursuing some sort of corporate career thingy in Ak. At one time or another, most of us had been in one place or another; combinations of me & Miles, Brian and Miles, Miles and Andre, me & Andre, me & Brian... most of these gatherings centering around a pursuit of some sort like fishing or shooting. It was really good to catch up. Long may the catch ups continue.

Wedding is this weekend. Looks like another catch-up, can't wait!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The BIGGEST week

Preparations for the biggest week are underway, starting with filling up my saltie flyboxes. The biggest week? Yep, its going to go something like this.

Friday May 6, arrive at swamp, set dekes, prepare for biggest day of the year. (In the world of the waterfowler, this day sh*ts all over Xmas)
Saturday May 7, the biggest day of the year
Sunday May 8, leave swamp, arrive home, pack car with gun, goose dekes, rods, reels, stuff... so much stuff
Monday May 8, pick up Ian's boat and maybe Ian, head North. Arrive at Parengarenga.
Tuesday May 9 to Thurs May 12, fish Parengarenga, hunt geese
Friday May 13, arrive home
Saturday May 14, Sunday May 15... well if I'm lucky I'll be duck hunting.

I'll certainly be tired....