glasshouse up and running

the ‘glasshouse’ by the stream

I have finally built my glasshouse – it is a kitset and has no glass, but it does have polycarbonate walls, river stones for heat retention, a water tower (heat retention & moisture for plants) and its first plants – some lettuces in pots.  The aim is to grow early tomatoes, capsicum, chillies, cucumber and seedlings – all in pots.  The sheer brilliance of my heat-retention devices is yet to be tested – but one must try!

the power source!

what my nose is into at the moment

I’m reading two thoughtful books at the moment – both with theological wisdom. The first is the Mary Doria Russell novel Children of God.  If it is anything like it’s predecessor The Sparrow, it will be a classic – promising so far!
Take This Bread is an interesting account of Sara Miles making her way into the life of faith in Jesus Christ.  She seems to be bringing her quirky self along for the ride, which is only reasonable as she is bound to meet mostly quirky people in the church anyway.

Sweet Tooth

I have just read Ian McEwan’s latest novel Sweet Tooth.  It is a 1970’s set low level spy novel about a young idealistic woman, Serena, who is recruited to ‘spy’ on or woo an emerging novelist.
The story unfolds well for the reader with enough pace and tension to keep the pages turning.  The ending is clever – very clever really, and feasible.
Some interesting themes emerge to invite reflection: ‘ideology and truth,’ ‘what is work and what is love?’ ‘creative ways to beat writer’s block’ and, the disturbing one, in what way does deception make for a more intense and fulfilling relationship?  With the two main characters, some deception seemed to help.  I am not of their kind I suspect!

The church, represented by Serena’s Bishop father, was a wet and hopeless blanket… oh well, it was the 70’s!

The title leaves a bit to be desired… a spy ‘project’ name that while descriptive of the intent, is somewhat lame-duck-ish.  If they make a movie, that name won’t last.

another quote I used in yesterday’s sermon…

Bonhoeffer made it into yesterday’s sermon – a statement I found in a Willimon book about the strange thing that happens in remembered story – what the church immerses itself in and becomes immersed in (on a good day!)
“We become a part of what once took place for our salvation.  Forgetting and losing ourselves, we, too, pass through the Red Sea, through the desert, across the Jordan into the Promised Land.  With Israel we fall into doubt and unbelief and through punishment and repentance we experience godly reality.  We are torn out of our existence and set down in the midst of the holy history of God on earth.  There God deals with us, and there he still deals with us, our needs and our sins, in judgement and grace… we are the reverent listeners and participants in God’s action in the sacred story, the history of Christ on earth.”
[from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together 1953]

help me choose a picture progress report

from my previous post on which photo to convert to a canvas there have been a range of replies – evenly divided between #1, #2 # 4 and #5 – with a slight lean to #4 – the beach picture with Anne walking in the distance
Tacking Point Lighthouse
Here’s another that probably should have made the cut instead of the waves pic #3
It is another lighthouse image from Tacking Point, Port Macquarie.

London Olympics

I have really enjoyed the London Olympics.  Timing-wise it has suited us in New Zealand very well with heats in the evening before we go to bed and finals in the morning when we wake (Athletics and Swimming) and finals in the evening for most of the events where NZers won medals – rowing, kayaking, cycling and yachting.
It ceryainly rates as the greatest Olympics I have witnessed, mostly because of the setting – the city of London was the winner.
How fantastic it was to involve the inner city in a number of the sports and the surrounds like Greenwich were fantastic for the equestrian events in particular.
I particularly enjoyed the humour and Britishness of the opening ceremony – Queen, Bond & Corgi’s especially (Griff, our househound of the Corgi persuasion was chuffed!).  Even the closing ceremony proved stunning.
For a despiser of the Spice Girls, I have to say that what they did (aided by excellent cabs) was ok (and they didn’t even tip off the moving cabs in order to make headlines) – and because they have made this leap they most surprisingly score a snapshot in my blog – a one and only says my editor!

Wendell Berry poem (a kind of poke at photographers!)

I used this poem in a sermon today – about the challenge of being in the stories of the Bible as opposed to sitting looking through a lens or as a spectator…

The Vacation
Once there was a man who filmed his vacation.
He went flying down the river in his boat
with his video camera to his eye, making
a moving picture of the moving river
upon which his sleek boat moved swiftly
toward the end of his vacation. He showed
his vacation to his camera, which pictured it,
preserving it forever: the river, the trees,
the sky, the light, the bow of his rushing boat
behind which he stood with his camera
preserving his vacation even as he was living it
so that after he had had it he would still
have it. It would be there. With a flick
of a switch, there it would be. But he
would not be in it. He would never be in it.