29 October 2020

Number one super best achievement of the week – maybe of the year.


Home-made Hominy! I was vocally unenthusiastic at Austin’s efforts in progress — boy was I mistaken. Austin’s hominy is AMAZING. It tastes like Corn Chips. It is so crazy DELICIOUS. This may well change diets throughout Fiji, because for sure we are going to pass this wonderful AmerIndian technology along. What a great use for old dry field corn!


More from Dr. Smarty Pants – his darkest green egg yet.

rainbow eggs


My “big outing” for the week was to take Kiki and his friends to the river. I didn’t want to go, but Austin made me. I had a JOB to do.

rivers’ edge

We were supposed to see if the baby crabs were migrating upstream, and report to Granddaddy. They weren’t. But the kids had a good time anyway.

low water

It was shady, tranquil and lovely there by the river: the best hour of my week.


This isn’t as random as it looks.

bucket head

Kiki and I had been playing with the bucket on our heads and we made a discovery. Kiki put the bucket on Granddaddy’s head and said, “Sing!” The acoustics are incredible inside. As this photo was taken, Granddaddy was entertaining himself with a slew of low notes.


Happy week, everybody.


22 October 2020

Yesterday I had NOTHING in my camera – so I took my walk with an eye for anything of interest. Found this flower:

an afternoon smile

It’s sweet. I have no idea what it IS, but what the hey – it’s Flora!

Then I saw THIS – at quite a distance for these old eyes:

a valley “eagle” has landed

I liked this because it reminded me of the eagle on top of a grave that is special to me:

Grave of Shoghi Effendi in London. (stock photo)

And then I hit the JACKPOT (for me) – somthing actually interesting that I’d never seen before – a goat being tethered by its horns!

the non-choke rope

Earlier in the week we had a party to celebrate a Baha’i Holy Day.

Monica getting kids ready for their “item”

Normally I wouldn’t mention it, because this is not that blog – however, the celebration had a pertinent, unanticipated consequence. One set of guests did not arrive alone.

Bingo saw that Rocky is gone – so Bingo is back.

A final look at my week from this morning – the insane world of Feedbag String.

Two days worth of string – twelve strings from six bags. Austin promises the feed usage will go down. He will thin the flock. Lots of roosters for sale.


Happy week, everybody.


15 October 2020


Surely many loyal readers have been rooting for the naughty dog. He got naughtier. Akka and Monica let him go for a short run, and he ended up killing a GOOSE. Nica and I were going to Suva the next day, and so we planned to take him to SPCA where he would be neutered and adopted by a good family. Not such a happy life for a country dog, but what could we do?

Rocky did not improve on the ride. He filled the cab of our pickup with such noxious gases that the passenger nearly puked and the driver nearly passed out. Monica saw some people on the road with a dog – maybe they would want another. Turned out it was someody she knew, and it was obvious they didn’t want another dog.

I told her, “It has to be men with at least two dogs already.” Just a few kilometers down the road Monica pointed – “THERE are two men with two dogs!” My eyes aren’t that good. When I finally saw them, I sighed – “I wish they were on our side of the road.” I started slowinig down, and with a quarter kilometer still to reach them … they started crossing to our side! As I got near, the two dogs were STILL in the road, right at the speed bump.

Monica rolled down her window and called out greetings in Fijian. The fellows faces lit up when they spotted Rocky. A bunch of stuff was said that my “Fijian word of the week” was useless for. Nica told me they were super happy. Yes, they wanted Rocky – they couldn’t believe it.

Did we have a rope? No? Wait, I’ll go get one.

One fellow ran off. Monica and Rocky got out of the car. Rocky and the other two well-fed, healthy-looking dogs sniffed each other peaceably. The fellow came back a only few minutes later on horseback. “We’ll only tie him for a few days so he knows his home.”

They need him for HUNTING WILD PIGS . Oh happy, happy!

Rocky’s Lucky Day



The tenth of October is the anniversary of Fiji’s independence from the British Empire. For this FIFTIETH anniversary, the Fiji Mint put out a new fifty cent coin, and a new fifty dollar bill.

50 cents for 50 years



So we were in Suva and went to the big store. Monica was staring at this door.

Staff party behind closed doors

Bunches of naked pink pork legs sticking up out of a basin. Time to par-tay!


Happy week, Everybody.


8 October 2020

Austin told me that our sunflowers are confused. They always point east.

Here they are, pointing east in the late afternoon. Maybe they just like looking at the picture of Austin’s sweet mother.

While getting this photo, I found another surprise in the little garden Austin planted on Beamer’s grave.

Black vincas. Well, extremely dark red ones. Really beautiful.


Dr. Smarty’s active mind at it again. One morning he looked out the window and said, “You see those pockets of fog on the mountain?”

Yes, I did. So I took this photo through the mosquito screen. “I wonder if there are waterfalls in each of those spots,” he mused. Apparently waterfalls increase the humidity and cause fog to condense. Hmmm.


It’s been a non-stop week. I ended up in Suva – and walking. Something new in my own neighborhood, a derelict house on the corner was renovated into apartments. The wall is up with some really nice artwork.


Happy week, Everybody.


1 October 2020

Kids in the neighborhood

I saw these little guys on my walk yesterday. Are they cute or what! Identical twin kids.


Patiently waiting

You may have trouble guessing what this is. It is MOCA (mo-tha) – local amaranth that grows as a weed and is a delicious spinach-like veggie. I’ve shown you moca before, you already knew that (or didn’t care) – I was just joking. Where the moca is growing is in Austin’s stalled project … a water slide. Carpenter had to take a few weeks off. This project is taking for-ev-er. I hope it will be worth it when it’s done.


water hyacinths

Meanwhile, Austin brought up these water hyacinths to save them. The geese have eaten them up, the sheep love them, and so do chickens. Some day we will be purifying the swimming pool water and producing a lot of animal chow at the same time.


butterfly leaves

Akka sent me this photo. A plant Monica put in the living room has leaves like butterflies. He said when the leaves are open it is like a clover – so it’s a clover. Austin butted in – “it’s not a clover, it is “oxallis”!

So this morning I went to get a photo of this overlooked-by-me plant.

Oxalis by day

Here it is. Son of a gun – guess what I just learned on Google – One, “oxalis” has only one L in its name, and Two – it is a SHAMROCK! Gee whiz.


Akka up a tree

The lump up this tree is Akka, doing the old shakey-shakey-shakey to get the tamarinds out. Not many fell. They dry on the tree and shake out easily once fully mature.

Ladies on the roof

Arti and Vina went up on the roof to pluck tamarinds directly from the branch. At the end there were not so many, so they gave them all to me.

Tamarind drying

This is it. The tree has about 100 times this much, if we can just get it out before the afternoon rains cause the pods to mold.


At least daily I hear myself yelp with pain.

Sample scratch

Austin says his legs have gotten all scratched up too – especially one night when he was in a two hour zoom meeting. This is why.

Sylvester and Casper


Happy week, Everybody. 🙂