This week’s small pleasures: episode 20

So here we are again with a short list of this week’s small pleasures.  There were quite a few things going on as you can see from my last two posts (here and here), but there was also time to just enjoy a few things. Thanks once again to Mani at A Small Life Wandering for the idea.

Going to the ballet

On Friday I went to see The Royal New Zealand Ballet‘s production of Giselle.  It is a ballet I have seen many times, and there were a number of years when I groaned if it was being danced.  However, after seeing it in Denmark a few years ago, I realised that this is truly one of the greats of classical ballet.  If you don’t know the story, the ballet tells the tale of a young peasant woman (Giselle) who is courted by a mysterious stranger who turns out to be Count Albrecht, who is of course betrothed to another.  On finding this out, Giselle descends into madness and dies, giving the dancer a great chance to act as well as dance.  Act 2 is set in the forst, where the Wilis, vengeful ghosts of jilted brides, welcome Giselle.  When Albrecht arrives in mourning, the Wilis exact their revenge, forcing him to dance until he dies from exhaustion.  Giselle of course shields him, and morning breaks before he dies.

The RNZB’s production is one of their showpieces that they take on tour.  It suits the company well, not needing a huge cast and allowing the stars to shine. We saw Mayu Tanigaito as Giselle, who was so perfect for the part, turning from naive peasant girl, to madness to an ethereal ghost.  Daniel Gaudiello, a guest from The Australian Ballet, made a handsome and dashing Albrecht.  Clytie Campbell was Myrtha, queen of the Wilis and Sir John Trimmer made an appearance as the duke.  It was an excellent evening all round.


Wilis in the wood

Food shopping

I always enjoy grocery shopping, picking up whatever looks good, trying to plan the week’s meals ahead.  With a basic family favourite, chilli con carne, on the books, it was time to purchase the gorgeous red chillies at the top of the post.

We also picked up some apricot coloured New Zealand yams (oca), cavolo nero, local oranges, red skin potatoes and golden kiwi fruit.  As I had no time to bake or make desert, we also treated ourselves to some Wellington chocolate factory chocolate, and keeping with the theme of Saturday, beer, picked up their craft beer bar (see the last post about Beervana).


New Zealand yams – look ugly, taste delicious


A treat

Spring is round the corner

The daffodils are out, the trees are covered with buds, I even saw two blackbirds this morning collecting material for nests.

Winter salad lunches

I’m not going anywhere this week, so am planning healthy lunches as opposed to picking things up on the way to work or having just one extra mini pie at a buffet lunch.  My base today was cauliflower, topped with walnuts, sunflower seeds, feta cheese, a sprinkling of sea lettuce and sun dried tomatoes and a dash of hemp seed oil. Yum.


Sprinkle a bit of the sea on a salad

Sunday afternoon – relaxing

The sofa and a detective novel called me, the sun coming in through the window and a velvet pillow called Charlie.  All were content.




  1. Your cauliflower lunch sounded really good! With sunny weather the last few days in Edinburgh it’s making me want some light and fresh lunches. And Charlie looks comfy – makes me miss my own kitten!


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