Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Blast is moving to a new Site

This blog is being moved across to a new platform.

You can continue following and reading the "Southern Blast" at

Talk soon.

Southern Man

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Southern Sky Magic

Source Unknown: Its not mine but it is fantastic!
Been down south lately and looked up on a clear night? the stars are fantastic especially down in the South Canterbury region where you can get right way from the lights of a city.

Take the time to have a look. it reminds you why we are so lucky to live in New Zealand.

Be So Good They Can't Ignore you

All Blacks & Team NZ
Its not often you get a really hard test match like the one last night between the All Blacks & the Springboks. Physically tough stuff and some hard yards to secure the win. There can be no denying that our All Blacks are a world class side. The fact they are the most successful (winning) sports team ever clarifies that!

Team NZ are also world class and despite a set back today (loss, almost wrecked the boat and then a race called off due to high wind) they continue to inspire not only us here in NZ but anyone in the world interested in high performance teams.

Be so good they can't ignore you.......absolutely they are and continue to be!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Winter Images of the South.

So true.

Dawn: South Canterbury July 13

Feeding the birds. July 13

The Army on the move. July 13

Gunns Bush Waimate. A lovely spot. July 13

Glenfalloch Station. The Southern Alps, Canterbury, July 13

View from the kitchen. Glenfalloch Station, July 13

A trip North. Parliament, Wellington, July 13

Shag rock, Sumner. July 13
A decent dump of snow. Mid Canterbury, July 13

Redcliffs, Christchurch. Home. July 13

Downtown Wellington, before the big shake. July 13

Pondering life. Shag rock, July 13

Frosty morning. Hagley Park, Christchurch, June 13

Redcliffs, Chriscthurch. Dawn, July 13

Redcliffs, Christchurch, Dawn, July 13

Christchurch, dawn, June 13

Monday, June 17, 2013

Goldwyn Bull Sale: A Cracking Day Out.

They come from far and wide.
Last Friday was the 15th Annual Stud Bull Sale at Goldwyn Farm tucked under the Hunter Hills of South Canterbury. Owned by my Uncle (Bruce Alexander) it is always a highlight of the business year for both the farm and for some of those involved. It becomes a bit of a family and district event as people chip in to make the day a success.

Breeding top Bulls is a challenging and interesting game to be in and whilst I don't profess to know much about it, I certainly enjoy watching the day unfold and being part of it. The sale itself is a culmination of years of hard work. To constantly improve and perfect a blood line that then is used to better the Angus breed nationally is something that gives Bruce a lot of satisfaction. It is leaving a real legacy within the industry for current and future generations.

I enjoy watching farmers, who travel from far and wide, checking out the livestock. The art of working
Here is what a $10,000 bull looks like.
with stock, reviewing the breeding statistics and then actually looking at each Bull through an experienced set of eyes with a lifetime of experience and assumption.  Then the auction itself, the breeders introduction to the property and the year that has been, the auctioneers summary of each bull, the bidding, the sale and the preparation for transport of a lot of heavy livestock.

Then the social time that sees a real mix of people have a few beers, some homecooked baking and some angus pure steak straight from the BBQ.

A bloody good day out and a successful one for Goldwyn, home of one of New Zealands top Angus bloodlines. The best in my humble opinion!
Checking out the gear. Pre-auction time.
What to bid on?
An introduction from the man himself. Bruce Alexander.
Looking good.
A few beers and a good yarn.
Angus Pure rolls off the BBQ. Southern Gold!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Life in the South: Recent Images in the Life of a Southern Man June 13

Ocean Ridge Kaikoura. A great spot.

Kaikoura local. Chilling out.

Kaikoura. The coast north.

Mt Diamond. Hunter Hills South Canterbury. Home.

Redcliffs Chrischurch. Sunrise in June 13

Port Hills looking down into Lyttleton. May 13

Yomping it with the Army. Otago May 13

Sunrise over South Shore Christchurch, May 13

These boots were made for walking. Army May 13.

Roast lamb. Gold!

A Southern Man giving an ANZAC address. 25 April 3013.

Te Papa, Wellington. April 13

Hunter Hills. Garden at home. April 13

On the move. May 13.

Back yard. Hunter. May 13

Sunday, April 14, 2013

5 Minutes with Southern Man & Author Greg Allnutt

Greg Allnutt relaxing

Greg Allnutt is a good Southern Man who over a 20 plus year career as an Army Officer achieved a lot of things. His book "Keeping the Peace - A Kiwi's Modern Conflict Experience" is a great read about his time in the Army and overseas on a number of operational tours. I asked Greg to take some time and answer a few questions so you can get to know him a bit better;

When did you know you were destined to be a soldier? From an early age my parents would have described me as Army mad – for some unknown reason it always interested me and I loved going to the army displays at the A&P shows to see the weapons and ask a million questions, reading about and playing ’war’.

What are the 3 biggest things you learnt during your time in the Army?

1.     People are your biggest asset and they define your organisations culture and results – get rid of those that don’t fit and seek to get talent.
2.     If people are passionate, trying hard, taking risks and learning from their mistakes it is all you can ask – I value those traits.
3.     Don’t sweat the small stuff and appreciate what you have.

What is your favourite meal?  After many trips to Southeast Asia I love a good curry – especially roti chanai for breakfast in Singapore.

What is your favourite drink? A good strong coffee in the morning and a nice lager to finish a hard day’s work – currently liking the Japanese beer Asahi.

You are a Southern man through and through. What do you love the most about living in the South Island of NZ?  The proximity to the outdoors be it the mountains or the sea to appreciate nature and our great country.   I also like the small country town values we were bought up on around integrity, hard work, ingenuity to solve problems and having a bit of fun.

Greg's book cover.
Tell me something no one knows about you? I am a closet ‘greeny’ and love anthropology - so I love documentaries and reading on nature, the environment and the history of mankind, our cultures and our affect on the environment – yes I am a closet geek.  Oh I am also an atheist and struggle to bite my tongue.

If you could have dinner with 3 people who would they be and why?
a.     My wife’s dad (he is deceased) - so he could meet his grandchildren.
b.     Charles Darwin – he was a great mind of his time and I would love him to see where science has taken his theory – he could bring along Richard Dawkins and the conversation would be electric.
c.      Barak Obama – to a chat about his leadership challenges around the environment, gun control and the economy.

Favourite movie & why?  The girl with the dragon tattoo – just fresh, raw, intense drama.

Favourite author and why? Ken Follet is my favourite novelist – all of his stories are gripping dramas while the subject matters varies greatly.

What do you do to relax? I go for a surf and get a moment of zen just sitting waiting for a wave – I think I am an active relaxer – if its not surfing then its a mountain bike or run to get headspace.

You can read more about Greg's book in the blog I recently wrote entitled "Keeping the Peace: Someones Got to Do It (link here).

Enjoy this blog? Check out some other stories I have written about good Southern Legends listed below.