Scary Beast Whatifs and a Homestead Milestone

There was a slightly surreal tinge to this week, here on The Homestead.

We kiwis have, we know, been living a very different life than many of you. Our Covid lock-down came and went and, slowly but surely, we slipped back into the old routines. Admittedly, I still don’t enter a new building without partaking of a hearty squirt of the proffered sanitiser and I usually remember to turn on bluetooth when heading out of the Homestead driveway, but generally we’re pretty much “back to normal” (unless your normal was regular overseas jaunts). We were a bit behind the times, only becoming aware of a new “community transmission” in Auckland when The Resident Engineer’s boss text on Sunday. The Prime Minister’s announcement half an hour later confirmed it; Auckland was moving to level 3, the rest of the country to Level 2, and so EMEx (engineering, machinery and electronics expo) our RE and her boss had been looking forward to attending was no longer. In the grand scheme of things, we know this was but a teeny tiny blip but it was a wake up call for us all. For three days it was back to masks and gloves and social distancing; Whatifs are scary beasts!

The conversation round the dinner table this week has centred on our country’s collective brush with the virus. We spoke of being thankful, and mindful, and living simply and cleanly. We examined ways we could become more robust as a unit, less buffeted by the happenings of “the outside world” while still maintaining an active part in it (like Auckland bound work jaunts). In fact, we turned this conversational pebble so much, polishing it to a gleam, we nearly missed a landmark moment in Union Homestead history.

When we took our first tentative steps down the Homesteading road, our often voiced dream was to eat entirely from our own land. Often in the past we have got close but this week

Lamb Chops, roast potatoes, onions, beetroot, kohlrabi, and carrots, and cabbage with bone stock gravy. Please excuse the standard of the photograph and the dodgy table dressing; the moment nearly passed us by…and one of us was already in their PJs

Okay, a purist would argue the salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and cornflour in the gravy let us down, but we felt it was a moment worth opening a bottle for.

Colin took all this table talk (from his vantage point underneath it) very seriously. How could he do his bit to keep the Homestead running smoothly? Maybe he could get in the washing?

Maybe not.

17 thoughts on “Scary Beast Whatifs and a Homestead Milestone

  1. Yes, I heard about your “outbreak” in Auckland up here. I must say your government acted on it very quickly. It’s been a problem here – they’re trying to maintain a balance between lockdown and keeping the economy going, and you know the old adage “You can’t please all the people all the time”. It isn’t working super well in either direction frankly and we’ve been at it for months – our current level (here in BC) since Nov 7, and a slightly less restrictive level in which we could meet in socially distanced groups of 6 and groups of 10 outside from June. At this point we’re all waiting on the vaccination program to do it’s thing – our province began about a month ago and according to their plan, my husband will get his jabs in July, and I will in August, despite both of us having underlying conditions. In the meantime all the anti-maskers have lost their voices and most of the rest of us wear them so much we sometimes forget we have one on. My teacher daughter has fancy ones with crayons and happy faces and rainbows in an effort to keep the mood bright in her classroom of 7 yr olds. I’m so impressed with your zero mile dinner! Have you read the 100 Mile Diet by Smith and McKinnon? They were apartment dwellers in Vancouver who vowed to eat local. Or Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal Vegetable Miracle? such a great book that combines local eating/grow your own/ recipes and garden stories.
    What a feeling to know that your grew or raised everything on your plate.and know that there is more in the pantry/paddock/garden. We’ve been there too.

  2. The whole lockdown balancing act is a no win and its only as effective as your weakest link. Money talks and goalposts seem to be moveable for the right price. I hope the various vaccines do what they need to and the world can move on.
    We’re pretty pleased with ourselves re: the zero miles menu but the gardens still have such a long way to go. Sailors Small Farm were our role models when we started out…you with your pigs and chickens and awesome vege garden.

  3. so glad it is fine. here in Tasmania we have been very lucky with how our State Government has handled things. The blip in Victoria seems OK for the moment. Our lives here have been pretty normal except sanatising and writing contact details at almost every place you go but strangely not supermarkets!

  4. Dinner looks yum, I love early pj time. Our little town has been quite fortunate with no cases. There are a few of us who wear masks anyway as I have spoken to a couple of people & not everyone is taking this virus seriously. Holiday time was a little worrying glad that’s over, although it did help with the economy of our town.
    Oh no is there anyway to rescue the washing. lol

    • Yep, those exotic goodies have to travel a fair way. I stopped buying a (delicious) herbal tea. Was called Central Otago Apricot (kind of just down the road) but was in fact made in Germany. Those poor apricots qualified as frequent flyers!🤣

  5. Congratulations on the zero food miles! That is some achievement. Your country has done marvels in containing Covid outbreaks and it helps that your population isn’t as high as some harder hit countries. We are sick of our lockdown which, apart from three weeks in December (when we were in Tier 4 = nearly lockdown but not quite) has been going on since the beginning of November. Fortunately, we are getting on well with the vaccinations and almost all the people I know of about my age and over have all had their first dose. The Covid mutations have been a real trial. Roll on spring, I say and a little more freedom would be great.

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