Wednesday 10 February 2016

A week of polo

Martin's had a blast at the world championships for bike polo in Timaru this past week!  For a glimpse of the action, check out the video below:

Martin wasn't playing (after all, this was the world champs and the skill level was pretty high!), but he did help out with score- and timekeeping a lot of the time.  You can see him in his bright yellow jacket and tweed hat a few times in the video - probably most clearly at 3.47.

As well as the polo itself (which he loved) he enjoyed catching up with friends in Wellington and Christchurch as well as Timaru itself.  He also found time for one of Timaru's other highlights - watching the little blue penguins return to shore after a day at sea to feed their demanding chicks :-)

I was well-cared-for at home by Martin's mum and aunty.  We're grateful for the kind help of a number of people who made this pretty epic adventure possible.

We're also delighted to report that the trip was able to be done without the significant carbon emissions that initially put us off the idea of Martin attending the world champs at all.  Intercity now run very affordable IntercityGold night buses with recliner seating between Auckland and Wellington.  That meant Martin was able to travel from Christchurch to Auckland in around 24 hours (bus, then ferry, then bus), making the trip feasible.*

* Theoretically he was able to travel from Auckland to Christchurch in 24 hours as well, but a muck-up with his Auckland to Wellington night-bus meant he missed the morning ferry and spent an unexpected day in Wellington visiting Te Papa and catching up with friends.  The bus company (NakedBus), were very apologetic and even paid for his hostel in Wellington.

As noted earlier, flying to Timaru and back would emit around 610 kg CO2e.  Travelling this way emitted only around 120 kg CO2e: a reduction of 80%!  That's still a lot (the planet can only absorb roughly 100 kg CO2e per person per month without warming up some, so the transport alone accounted for more than a month's worth of 'safe' emissions), and we'll be offsetting it, but it was still way less than the alternative.  We decided that we were comfortable with this level of emissions.  It was good to be able to do the trip whilst still being (relatively) loving to our brothers and sisters in places like Bangladesh who are suffering so much as the climate changes.

A full breakdown of the carbon emissions from the trip is below:

Carbons/ kg CO2e

Transport 117.7

Food 10.5
'food' is 'excess' food, i.e. food Martin bought because he was on holiday that he wouldn't have bought otherwise.
Heather's care 74.1
Martin's parents driving from Whangarei to look after me in his absence.

Gifts 10.6

Drinks 7.5

Souvenirs 40

Sundry 2.8

Total 263.2

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