Rainy Day Render

This is a quick experiment in creating stylized phospholipid bilayers in Blender. This isn't meant to be 100% accurate; its just a test of what's possible. Blender is a powerful and free 3D software program. If you can get past the learning curve the results can be pretty rewarding.  

Big Adventure: Coasts and Kittens

We never saw much of Hokitika or its greenstone (NZ jade) beaches. We hit the road pretty early stopping at the Greymouth Anglican Church for their Easter Service before pushing on to Punakaiki. The weather was great and the sea views were stunning. We lingered there quite a while enjoying the sunshine and taking pictures of the interesting "pancake" rock formations.  


From Punakaiki we cut inland towards Nelson in the north. We made a run for Abel Tasman national park, but the rain caught up with us. We saw the beach before turning around and heading for our Airbnb outside of Nelson. That's when things got a bit strange...

Our Airbnb host had a serious cat infestation. I've never experienced anything like it. It made our dinner preparation interesting.

Maybe half the cats... 

Maybe half the cats... 

Back in Te Anau we had bought some trail mix and what looked like ready-to-eat dried chickpeas.  A day later we discovered that the chickpeas we hard as rocks and need to be soaked (if only we had time for that). Since it was Easter and most of the shops we closed on Good Friday, we thought dining out wouldn't be an option. We figured that we could combine the chickpeas with a few other ingredients and make a meal out of them. I asked my wife what we would call the meal. She said, "I'll know when it's ready". I thought that was a strange name. 

Recipe for "I'll Know When Its Ready" 

(Serves 2-10) 

  • 2-3 lbs dried chickpeas (more if available) 
  • 3x 8 oz cans of sweet chile flavored chicken (don't add enough to taste)
  • 1 28 oz bottle of store brand Indian "butter chicken" sauce
  • 1/4 of a pumpkin
  • 1 small bag ready made brown rice
  • 1 small onion (chopped)
  • 1 lb strange looking leafy green (chopped) 
  1. In a large pot boil the chickpeas for 1 hour until raw/approaching al dente.
  2. In a saucepan, brown the onion, stir in chicken.
  3. Don't step on the cats. 
  4. Cut the pumpkin into bite sized chunks with a large dull knife, add to saucepan. 
  5. Add Rice and Indian sauce to saucepan and chickpeas.
  6. Clear the cats from the table
  7. Add mystery greens to chickpeas and simmer. 
  8. Combine contents of saucepan with chickpeas.  
  9. Optional: Season to taste with diced tomatoes and taco seasoning
  10. Pet cats while you reflect on the series of decisions that resulted in this meal. 
"I'll Know When It's Ready" is finally ready to eat. 

"I'll Know When It's Ready" is finally ready to eat. 

I can haz weird food? 

I can haz weird food? 

Kittens help with indigestion. 

Kittens help with indigestion. 

Assuming we survive the chickpeas still expanding in our stomachs (and the cats), we'll be heading to Picton in the morning to catch a ferry to the north island.