Kia ora and welcome to The ka pai life. I've been meaning to delve back into the world of online writing over the past year - but just never found the time, and got way too distracted with the online madness of Facebook and Twitter to properly contemplate writing more than 140 characters. Sadly, this has transferred into my 'real' life, and I now find it difficult to hold a conversation with more than two 'status updates'. I consider myself a writer, and it's important for me to keep a discipline of writing if I'm going to continue seriously with a career in this vein, hence the blog. The discipline will be keeping it going as I've already written and discarded one blog in my online writing lifetime.
To introduce myself, I guess you would say that in the past year I've had a bit of a sea-change. Chucked in a high-profile, pretty well-paying public service role, to follow my heart and soul back to the South Island, and to a job that I can say with pride I believe in, and am passionate about. Also, after a decade of chasing my career, to the detriment of all other things, I've followed a life that is about lifestyle, love, family and dare I say, balance.
I've been back in my beloved Te Wai Pounamu for a year now, and during that time have learned more about the 'real stuff' than ever before. Cooking, preserving, foraging for, and growing food are skills that I am slowly gaining - but rapidly in my terms since last year I could just about manage a spaghetti bolognese (the bloke had to teach me how to scramble eggs)! I can now cook and bottle plum sauce, snorkel for paua, collect sacks of pine cones for winter, feed my chooks and collect their eggs (more on those ladies later), and live in a way that feels right. It's not always easy... and we are by no means self-sufficient, but living simply has done a lot for my body and mind, not just my ecological conscience.
Friends and parents often give me a hard time, since I once would have eaten takeaways five nights a week, I now skite about eating meals that consist almost entirely of veges from the garden. They call me "Barbara Good" and the bloke and I get a good-natured ribbing about how we've taken on "The Good Life". I'm quite happy about that. It was one of my favourite shows as a kid, and I'm happier now than I ever have been. The Ka Pai Life gives a kiwi slant on what we are trying to do, and I hope to be able to share with you some of the experiences, good, bad and otherwise that we encounter - if you're interested.