Sunday, April 14, 2013

I’m Baaack!


G’day mates! I haven’t posted in a while and for that I’m truly sorry. I’ve been very busy, you know, running a joke shop, circus, horse camp, all the normal things.

To start with I am very proud to announce that my friends and I have started a joke shop! Jokes Via Ceilidh. We sell shock pens, fake gum, fake pencils and fake blood. Real wide variety, isn’t it? We have made (let me add this up) a grand total of (that can’t be right) $2.20. Oh. Well that was just the profit!

What next . . . (Let me consult my notes) Ahhhhh, yes, Circus! Well I have been moved to (drum roll) 7 hours a week! 3 times a week. I am learning cloud swing, a type of rope that is suspended from both ends. You do all sorts of tricks on it.

And finally, Kiah Park Horse Camp. I was there for a week. I rode a sweet black mare called Minty for most of the week; but she was so stubborn that I rode a lovely chestnut gelding called Zumba for the rest of the week. Zumba and I took 4th in barrels, bounce pony and horsemanship. We got 3 ribbons that looked very handsome around his neck. We went swimming in the dam, I was so cold, my teeth were literally chattering. There was a flying fox where you would go skimming across the surface of the water like a skipping stone.

I’m in 7th grade now and I’m the vice captain of my school house. (I get a badge and a-a-a, well I get the badge). That’s pretty cool cause I’m a school leader and I get to boss around all the little kids! (No, not really). Anyways I will post again soon and so long for now!

Friday, July 06, 2012

My Day as a Zookeeper

this is a barn owl called Milo





this is a wedge tailed eagle called Omega

this is a sea eagle called Illuka

This is a barn owl called smudgee

This is Tanami the dingo

 me and Utopia the koala
utopia agaian



Hello again. It's been a while. Yesterday I went to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary and took part in their 'junior zoo keeper for a day' program. We got to learn about animals such as platypuses, dingos, cockatoos, koalas, and many other types of birds. We made clay toys with nuts stuck in them for the cockatoos to play with and eat. We cuddled koalas, held barn owls and pet barking owls. We cleaned the dingos enclosure and hid bits of meat for them. We sorted through meal worms and earth worms for a tasty lunch for Barak the platypus. It was a very full day. I had a very good time (even though I had to get up a 6:45, blargggg!). The employees all took very good care of the animals and they obviously love them a lot. The Koalas were sleepy and cuddly and would snuggle up against you. The dingos were excitable and happy and leaped to greet you. The Platypus was energetic and could stay underwater for over 2 minutes! We fed kangaroos and looked at tiny joeys. I thought it was a great program and I really enjoyed myself.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Life in Brisbane


Hello everybody who reads my blog!
I'm sorry I haven't been blogging lately. I've been pretty busy. I am now in school at New Farm State School in Brisbane as some of you may know. I have to wear a uniform (arggg!). 

It is much different from home school. The bell for the start of school rings at 8:35 am and the going home bell rings at 3:00 pm. I used to get up at 8:35! Things are busy and my mom is writing a book so the whole family is working hard. We were recently in Airlie Beach on a trip with my dad. We got a TV in our hotel room which was extremely exciting. (When you haven't watched TV in almost 3 years watching TV is thrilling). 

 We also went to Moreton Bay with our good friends Totem. While there we went surfing down the big sand dunes on boogy boards and we had an Easter egg hunt on shore. Good bye for now and happy belated Easter.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

New Zealand

Hi everybody!






I'm sorry I haven't wrote a blog post for a while. We've been in New Zealand for the the past two weeks doing all sorts of cool stuff. We went white water rafting and my parents rafted down the highest commercially rafted water fall in the world. It was 25 ft tall. I did not get to go down that bit (thankfully). Then we went for a soak in a mud bath and slathered sulfur mud all over ourselves. The next day we went horse riding over beautiful mountainous terrain. After wards we drove to hobbiton where parts of upcoming hobbit movie were filmed. Then we went sailing on Lion New Zealand, the 80 ft MAXI yacht that Sir Peter Blake sailed in the Whitbread round the world race (now the Volvo race). When we came back it was my first day of school. Today is my second day. Wish me luck!

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Australian Drop Bears – A Menace to Tourists and Residents


Warning,Warning! Australian Drop Bear population has shot up during the last year! Drop Bears are a cross between a koala, the extinct Tasmanian Tiger, and a Tasmanian devil. The Drop Bear is at least 3 times as big as a normal koala and normally reaches to a man's thigh. Drop Bears have sharp claws and huge fangs. Drop Bears tend to live in eucalyptus trees, waiting for the unwary tourist or kangaroo to cross beneath their branches and then they drop onto their prey, thus the name Drop Bears. To find out more about Drop Bears go to the Australian Museum. 


Drop bears are a very real threat. Look up, stay alive.

Here is a picture of a drop bear found on a Mountain Bike rider's forum




Monday, January 09, 2012

Charlie the Cat is Home!!



CHARLIE THE CAT IS BACK! It's a cat, it's dog, no I was right the first time, it's a cat! And not just any cat, oh no, it's Charlie the Cat! Charlie the Cat has been missing in action for nearly a year, but he's back from his 11 month long vacation with new found courage to face the hardships of life afloat. When he left to go live with my grandparents I was so sad. I felt as though my best friend had deserted me. And now after 11 months of hissing at dogs and hiding in a cupboard, after 3 plane rides, a month of quarantine, several car trips and 1 dinghy ride he finds himself back where he started his long, long trip. He isn't very shy and he seems very happy. He remembers his old hiding places and he remembers not to fall over board. I'm so happy to have him back. And he's happy to be here.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Christmas in Oz

Hi everybody! We're in Brisbane, finally ready to settle down for a little while. We are spending Christmas with Connect 4.

They celebrate Christmas in the summer in Australia, which is kind of funny. It's really cold here! Sometimes it drops below 20 C! We'll be in Brisbane, or  Brissie, as the locals call it for a while which should be fun as there's a really nice park here and town is about a two minute walk away, not a hour long bus ride. I'm happy about getting back to civilization but also a little sad at the thought of this leg of the journey being done.

I'll miss the happy, simple island people who we spent so much time with in Fiji and Vanuatu. On the islands when anyone saw you they would stop, smile, and ask your name. Here, every one rushes by you with a frown on their face. Brisbane seems like a really nice place and I hope I'll be able to go to school here. A bunch of my friends are going to be living here on their boats which'll be cool. I'm happy to be here and I intend to make the most of it.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Maia in the Land of Oz


Hi everybody!

I'm finally in . . . Australia! We're 15 miles away from  Brisbane. We're sailing there with our friends Connect 4. Recently we went to the Australia Zoo and we cuddled koalas, fed kangaroos, and held crocodiles. 


 We spent an entire day there. It was so amazing to see all the hundreds of animals so healthy and happy. At the kangaroo park you didn't have to line up and be shown the exact way to feed the kangaroos, they roamed free all over the park and you could find one kangaroo that you liked and  feed him for awhile and then move on to another one. The kangaroos would stand up and curl their paws around your hand that held the food and look all around them with their intelligent little eyes. They looked like little people when they stood up. 

 One of the things I learned there was that all animals are individuals and they all have feelings. I've been sailing for two years and I saw so many amazing animals, sea turtles, whale sharks, manta rays . . . But their homes are disappearing. People pollute so much and if we don't stop and try to save these animals, they'll disappear. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Hello Australia!

Hi! We are on the last 100m leg of our journey to Australia. While in the South Pacific we've traveled 7350 m. Tonight we'll have arrived in Bundaberg

I'm learning morse code for fun right now so here's a message for anyone that can read it. .-. .. --. .... - -. .. -- .--. .- ... .. .. -. --. -- -.-- ..-. .-. .. . -. -.. … -... --- .- -

It's going to be very nice getting to Australia because there's going to be fresh milk, celery that isn't $2 a stalk, cheese, apples, and FLOUR THAT DOESN'T HAVE BUGS IN IT! Trust me, having flour without bugs in it is a big deal. My mum wonders where I'll get my extra protein but I'm not too sad to say adios to the bugs, to be honest. Our ETA, ( Estimated Arrival Time ) is at 1:am and we'll anchor in the quarantine anchorage. A lot of my friends are selling their boats in Australia and flying home so I'll have to say goodbye to a lot of friends.

A ton of my old friends went to Australia last year so I'll get to see them and that'll be really cool. We're going to be in Bundaberg for week or two and then we'll move down to Brisban and go to visit Sidney and pick up my cat Charlie who's arriving in Australia a bit after us.

Getting back to civilization is going to be amazing. Hot showers, fresh food, super markets . . . It's going to be awesome but weird. I'm really excited.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Vanuatu

Hi! I'm in Vanuatu. Before I got here I had no idea what to expect. Would it be like Fiji or Tonga? Would it be anything like French Polynesia?

Vanuatu is a very interesting place so I'm going to give you a bunch of random facts about it:

We've gone to a lot of villages and have been given fish, paw-paw (papaya), pumpkin, bananas, and coconut by the locals in exchange for T-shirts, canned goods, and fish hooks.

Instead of the whole country speaking 1or 2 languages, there are over 100 languages spoken in Vanuatu! Each village speaks its own language.

The Vanuatu people used to name the months after different types of yam.

Every year at the yam festival, men jump off a 15-story tower with vines tied to their ankles to ensure the growth of their yams.

When we were anchored off a island for the night we saw flocks of Dugongs, They look a lot like manatees. ( I fail to see how old time sailors could have ever believed these blubbery creatures to be mermaids, what happened to the long flowing hair, the sleek,shiny tail?)

Another time on a island called Epi we saw so many sea turtles that I started ignoring them.

I wondered what Vanuatu was like and I found out that it is a unique place all of it's own.

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Waterfalls

Hello!

I'm in Vanuatu right now. A lot of you probably have never heard of Vanuatu. It's in the middle of the ocean and it's a group of islands. It is, in fact a whole country of its own. I bet a lot of you are thinking "wow, a whole country I never knew about". We went to the most amazing water fall yesterday. There countless pools of cool, clear, water with minerals in it. You could get the best back massage in any pool. You can climb up the water fall and it isn't tricky. The people that own the water fall have put hand rails up the falls and scraped away the algae. I could have spent days there, it was that amazing. I shouted for the sheer joy of being alive and healthy. We swum and floated and slipped and slid. We charged up the falls like little kids.
We had the best day ever. Just our little family.

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving


 I just saved thanksgiving. Again. The day before thanksgiving I asked my mum when thanksgiving was. She checked on the internet and found out . . . THAT THANKSGIVING WAS TOMORROW! Quickly my mum radioed our friends Connect 4 and invited them to Thanksgiving supper.

We celebrated with our friends with lots of fun and tons of food. Our menu included roast chicken, (we passed on the $113 turkey, we didn't think our friends would mind chicken) mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and apple pie. 

We ended supper by telling each other what we were each thankful for. It was a lot of fun.

                                                    Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

School in Fiji


Hello!

I just visited a Fijian school. Compared with my old school, Emily Carr, this school was tiny! The rules were very different than the rules at Emily Carr. Some of the rules were “beware of falling coconuts” or “get in the school boat professionally”. Also, almost none of the children wore shoes. If I went bare foot to school in Vancouver I'd injure my feet!

 When we went to the school we brought textbooks, books for the school library, and pens and pencils for the kids. They were very excited about having visitors. We were shaking hands and high-fiving kids for ages. They were very hard working and very happy. The school goes from Grade 1 to Grade 8. Kids from three surrounding villages go to school there.

 We had a really fun time and met lots of great kids, the school is really nice and the kids are very proud of it.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Time in the Yasawas

Hello everyone,

I just came back from an amazing dive and I'm going to tell you all about it. We set out in our small dinghy toward the reef with our friends on Connect 4 following in our wake. While I was waiting my turn to get my gear on, my friend Chelsea and I went of to explore a bit. I was free diving down and I started to get out of breath, wow, that's weird, I thought I'm only at about ten ft. I turned around and looked up, I had actually gone down 25 ft. The clear water had fooled me into thinking that the bottom was much shallower than it was!

I went back to the dinghy and got my gear on. The my Dad and I went down to the bottom. There were brightly colored fishes, flashy coral, and clear blue water. We had a beautiful dive. We dove at Navadra and I would recommend going there if you can. If you're a beginner and you want a cool dive I would suggest Navadra. It's in the Yasawas in Fiji.

Last night Connect 4 and us had a big bonfire on the beach. We set of fire works and explored and made secret hideouts. It was really fun, we had a great time.

This morning, after I got up I saw a huge cruise ship coming in to the little harbor, it was crazy! It was called Captain Cook Cruises.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Racing in Fiji


My dear readers. 

Good morning, afternoon or evening. We just returned from crewing on a 41 foot catamaran during a race during which we were all supremely soaked. We’re at Musket Cove Regatta Week. Yesterday my team won at tug-o-war. Tomorrow we’re going to a pig roast.  We came in 3rd  in the race and we had lots of fun. The start of a race is kind of weird because everyone’s sailing around and every time you turn around another boat looks like it’s going to ram you. I was inside for most of the race so I can’t provide a very accurate description. We sailed around the island, got very wet, and had a lot of fun.

Sorry to say this blog post isn’t very long. I’ll write a longer one soon.
See you later!

Friday, September 09, 2011

Places I Love

My grandma asked me about my favourite place since we left Canada. I don't have a favorite place so here are my favorite things from each place.

THE U.S.: I really loved Christmas time. We were in Newport Beach (in California) for it. I didn't love it just because I got great presents, (although that was pretty fun) it was fun because of all the little secrets, decking out the boat for Christmas, cutting paper snowflakes, singing silly Christmas songs, and the feeling of merriment.

MEXICO: I loved La Crez and I met my friends Mairen and Siobhan and soon we became inseparable, sleepovers every night, eating ice creams, going to the market together . . .We strengthened each other and we became best friends.

MARQUESAS: It was a big change from hot, dry Mexico to the humid, misty Marquesas. Instead of sandy ridges there were towering lush, green mountains. We arrived very early in the morning, at about 4:00 am. We went back to bed and I woke up first at 6:00 am. I went outside and I saw huge green mountains and endless mist. If the explorers saw the same sight I did, I almost don't blame them for wanting the islands for themselves.

TUAMOTUS: We met so many great friends there. Dinner was almost always spent laughing and joking with another family. I loved how many potlucks and meals we all had together. The weather was perfect and every day was an new adventure.

SOCIETYS: I loved hanging out with my friends and going shopping in the Carrefour (a super market) with them. I liked going with my mom to the pearl shop and looking at buckets of pearls and deciding which pearl to do what with for which friend. And I loved the strong scent of fresh flowers in the morning from the shore.

COOKS: I liked motor scootering with our friends, except my dad and I crashed and that wasn't so fun. I liked going to see the giant clams even though we almost sank. (The dinghy was over loaded). It was fun going to shore in my kayak by pulling myself along the shore line. Everyone on the island was very friendly.

TONGA: We were in the first calm anchorage for a long, long time and as the sun set my parents and I swam towards the sandy beach. We played there for a while then we swam home.
That night I felt complete, a family.

FIJI: I really liked swimming in the water fall. It was so cold! In one place the rocks had worn away a natural water slide. There was a big bump about 6 ft down and it looked like it was really going to hurt but since you were airborne for the last 6 ft it didn't matter. It was really fun and I had a great time.

Our friends Mark and Val just left. Mark taught me to scuba dive. Our other friends Jen and Peter are coming with their kids Anja and Cara. We're going to Regatta Week (a big cruising get together with games and barbecues) so I guess this list will just keep growing.
LOVE, MAIA.

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Thursday, September 01, 2011

Birthday Diving



Hello my dear, dear readers. It's another beautiful day in Fiji. And it's almost my tenth birthday. What more could one want, right? But I also get to go scuba diving for my tenth birthday. Contrary to the common belief, scuba diving does not make you feel like a fish. Not at all, at least not at first. At first you feel like a puppy that's paws are too big for its body. But it's amazing, seeing all the coral and fishes and being able to inspect them for a while. Sometimes you soar, sometimes you sink, sometimes you rise. It all feels great.

Friday, July 08, 2011

My Ukulele


Hi again! It's me Maia Selkirk with another interesting story to tell. Anyways I'm learning to play a instrument. Try to guess what type. Still don't know? All right I'll tell you, a ukulele!

I'm taking lessons at downtown Papeete at Pedron Music, and after only 2 lessons I can play a song.
My ukulele is made from smooth honey colored wood from the miromiro tree. It's shaped like a electric guitar and it's a Tahitian ukulele and has a high clear ringing tone that sounds like a stream running over some rocks.
It's kind of easy . . . so far. My teacher's name is John and he's been playing ukuleles since he was a little boy. He has a double ukulele which is 2 ukulele's stuck together and during a song you can switch back forth between ukuleles.  


Byeeee!

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Tahiti! (with pictures by Maia)


The black sand beaches
Hi everyone! Here I am again in Tahiti. Yesterday we went on a guided tour of the island and stopped  at, Point Venus, The blowhole, the spring waters, the black sand surfing beach, the light house (I had a large, delicious slice of chocolate cake at the light house).
the spray from the blowhole
 Then we stopped at the botanical gardens to look at all the beautiful flowers and have a cone of refreshing boysenberry ice cream. From there we went to the fern grottos  and then we went home.


just a few of the beautiful flowers
 Ruth, our guide, told us many interesting facts about the culture, for an instance did you know that when a Tahitian child misbehaves a common punishment is buying and planting a tree. The worst punishment is planting a banana tree. When a child is told that they have to plant a banana tree they dissolve into tears and screams. When we asked Ruth why it was so hard she said “because you have to dig to china”anyways it's time for me to go . . . soooo so long for now!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Landfall Tahiti

Pictures, phonecalls, email etc soon--but just wanted to let friends and family know we safely arrived Tahiti last night and anchored at Point Venus with WGD and Britannia. Piko is further into Papeete. We're pulling up anchor and heading further into the city now.
We hear there is a four lane highway.
Craziness.

For other cruisers following in our wake, Point Venus is an excellent night time entry/departure point for Tahiti--it's wide open and flat calm.

* Happy Graduation to Colleen and Happy Birthday to Carolyne!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Cook'n---Marquesan Style

Hi people! It's me again! Today I'm going to be talking about cooking breadfruit fritters, a modern dish with a traditional Marquesan ingredient. If any of you wherever you are can find a breadfruit here's the recipe.

BREADFRUIT FRITTERS.
Mash 2 cups of soft raw breadfruit into a bowl. Add 2 eggs and mix in flour till it holds together well. Drop by teaspoon into inch deep hot oil. Flip with spoon when golden brown. Drain and serve.
Serves 3 or more.
 When ancient Marquesans cooked with breadfruit (they made poi-poi--a sticky, tangy, fermented dough like substance and also roasted it on a fire) the mashing part was done with a mortar and pestle, but we found a food processor much more effective and quicker.

After dinner we used another local ingredient to make our dessert . . . BANANAS! Here's the recipe.

BANANAS MARQUESAS   
Take 1 banana per person. Slice down the center of the bananas and part them so you have halves. Place the bananas in a frying pan with lots of butter let cook for three minutes then flip. Sprinkle with sugar ( lots of it!) and cinnamon (not lots!). Now glug rum all over the pan, (and now for the really fun part . . . ) SET IT AFIRE! After the fire goes out sprinkle with lime juice, (VERY IMPORTANT).
Serve with yogart.
I hereby conclude that the dinner was yummy.

Monday, May 16, 2011

CHRISTMAS IN MAY

My Christmas presents went to La Paz (where we spent Christmas) but we had to leave before they got there. Then our friends on Adios III  picked them up in La Paz and sailed them to Hiva Oa where they left them in a pizza restaurant. We were going to go to Hiva Oa but our rudder broke so we went to Nuku Hiva, 100 miles away from Hiva Oa. Our friends on BLUE MOON picked up the presents for us, and brought them to us in Nuku Hiva.

For us down here in the southern hemisphere it's winter but the months are the same so Christmas is in the summer. And in Australia they go and have barbies on the beach for Christmas, (barbecues, although I did like the idea that they barbecue barbies)  

Thanks to everyone for reading my blog and . . .  Merry Christmas in May!

                               
                                            MAIA!