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touch up paint new zealand Q&A Review

What’s the worst thing your instructor told you during the driving lesson?

This wasn’t terrible or upsetting. They were either just startling at the time, or confusingly relaxed. These moments introduced me to the polar opposite style of everything I’d been previously taught about driving & how I had been conditioned to behave on the road. For some background:, I grew up driving in New Zealand. In NZ we drive on the left-hand side of the road, and the steering wheel is on the right-hand side of the car. New Zealand has a Graduated Driver Licensing System (GDLS). I believe it was one of the first few, possibly even the first country in the world to implement a complete GDLS nationwide, ,but don’t quote me on that!, Canada actually imitated their GDLS for some provinces on the NZ Driver Licensing system. Though it is structured differently. I got my NZ Learner’s License as soon as I turned 15. I had been dreaming about it forever. 6 months later I was eligible to get my Restricted License which meant I could drive on my own between 5 or 6 am and 10 pm. 1 or 1&1/2 years later I was eligible to get my Full Drivers License. New Zealand has a very different driving culture to some parts of North America. It is very speed-averse, and any attempts to put your foot down, are often perceived as aggressive driving. You are taught to be quite passive, patient, smooth & gentle in all your actions, while being very exact with your positioning within your lane, etc. This is not a bad thing, especially as many NZ roads/lanes are not as wide as North American roads, are quite windy/bendy/hilly and in many cases, there is literally nothing to stop you driving into oncoming traffic or off a cliff, except for a two-inch wide painted line. Now to the main point: , When I moved to Canada at 18 years old, it was a huge adjustment. The entire driving culture is quite different, especially depending on which area you’re travelling in. I love the long, open highways that make you realise the incredible pioneering spirit of North American people, who somehow had this irresistible urge to travel vast distances, to build and create new settlements. Upon moving here, my NZ Drivers License was not able to be immediately converted to an Ontario Driver’s License, but required I jump through the steps similar to new Learners Permit Holders, but with much shorter intervals between License stages. So, early on I set up appointments with a driving instructor and had several lessons to get brushed up on the expectations in Ontario and to prepare for my upcoming driving tests, etc. Moment 1:, One of the first moments that stood out with my instructor was getting onto highway onramps. Growing up I had always been taught to get up to speed promptly, but ,very gently,, not revving the engine, never creating excessive engine noise, and certainly not causing any significant feeling or sensation of G-Forces within the car. I’ve always fancied myself to be a driver with quite the lead-foot, apparently, it runs in both sides of my family… However, that day with the instructor, I learned what it really meant to accelerate to join a traffic flow on a North American highway… As I got situated and was halfway along the onramp, I was moving briskly but cautiously, (I was entering a tight bend in the onramp and I didn’t want to seem aggressive or reckless), when suddenly the instructor started screaming. ,Yes, literally screaming! , “SPEED UP! SPEED UP!” “FASTER! FASTER! FASTER!” “GO! GO! GO!” ,(My engine was also SCREAMING by this point too), “PUT YOUR FOOT DOWN!! MORE!!” ,(Me: What? Are you sure?!), “YOU NEED TO BE GOING FASTER THAN THIS!!!” “PUSH IT TO THE FLOOR!!” ,(Rev Needle in the Red, moving up through the gears as quickly as possible, Engine Screaming its poor little guts out, G-Forces exiting the bend felt like they were exceeding what my cute little Hyundai was safely built to handle.) Honestly, I don’t know how to describe this experience, other than it scared the shit out of me! You see, I was used to merging into traffic flows that often dawdled well below the regular highway speed limit (100kph). That doesn’t happen often in Ontario and many parts of North America. I knew that traffic flow often cruised at higher rates than the posted speed limits, but I hadn’t thought about the fact that as a driver, I had to be aiming to join a traffic flow travelling at MINIMUM 110+kph at the slowest! Anything else is a FAILURE TO YIELD and could cause an accident. In New Zealand, I would have failed a driving test INSTANTLY if I had EVER accelerated like that during the exam! I would have likely been pulled over for a chat if the NZ Police were behind me too. Needless to say, my instructor had me practising onramps & offramps for the rest of the lesson, though it was hella fun and I LOVED being able to actually drive proactively, instead of feeling like I was constantly being restricted & going to get in trouble over a false perception of “aggressive” driving, which is actually just a basic, safe, self-aware & surroundings-aware, proactive approach to driving. Once I got used to it, everything made sense and I couldn’t believe how much anxiety it subtracted from upcoming onramps and highway merge situations. I actually felt much more in control at all times once I settled into this proactive style of driving, as opposed to my previous, more timid approach. Moment 2:, ,Parallel Parking. This was quite entertaining for me! , In New Zealand, Parallel Parking was one of the toughest things to practice and one of the toughest things to be tested on. I literally spent days and weeks practising correct positioning, angling and reversing in preparation for each of my driving tests. NZ Parking spaces are often a lot smaller than North American ones, and you had to be very precise if you wanted to pass your driving tests. In NZ, you could absolutely be failed on the whole test if you didn’t achieve a very precise parallel park manoeuvre. Growing up, I had learned how to park within 1–3 inches of the curb without ever touching or rubbing the curb with the tire/rim. In Canada, when I went to practise my parallel parking with my instructor, I only had to do it once for him to know I could do it well, and a second time in a different spot to make sure it wasn’t a fluke. Once I did it the second time, the instructor paused, looking quite surprised and didn’t say much. I think that the first time, he was probably thinking that I was *,too close,* to the curb and was at risk of hitting it. After the second time, he realised I was deliberately going that close. When he cautioned me on it, I then explained the expectations that I was used to, and that I would usually go MUCH closer to the curb without touching, but didn’t want to push my luck, (Murphy’s law and all), with him in the car, in case I misjudged the road angle, etc. If I recall correctly, after a moment or so he just chuckled and said we could move on to the next task or road, as we certainly didn’t need to spend any more time on it. In all our lessons, he never asked me to parallel park again. The parallel parking requirements in Ontario are far more relaxed than I anticipated. Even if you park 6 inches from the curb, you’d still be in acceptable range. I was flabbergasted! I’m not sure what the exact legal measurement is here, but I believe if you’re within 1 foot (12″) or 30cm, you’re usually fine. I nearly died when I learned that. In some jurisdictions, it is apparently closer to 18″. Anyway, these were odd and surprising things that I experienced with a driving instructor. Don’t even get me started on how weird it was to be able to turn right at a red light for the first few times in Ontario. I truly didn’t think I ever had to worry about doing that in NZ (turning left on a red), as I believed the habit would not naturally carry over when I was driving on the other side of the road, and the other side of the car. Turns out I was wrong! I have to be extra careful every time I visit NZ now…

If all countries had to use a communist-style flag, what would your country’s flag look like?

Ok, I live in New Zealand. So… That’s the flag I’ve got. Time to open up MS paint. First step: Replace all stars with yellow communist style stars. Second: Replace the damn Western capitalist pig-dog emblem with something more glorious. The (no-longer) silver ferns are a nice touch, no? Put something more local on the flag? Anyway, to the glorious part: Glorious communist symbol far outshines capitalist symbol. Lastly, replace any background colours you have with red. Finished design of the New Zealand communist flag. Comrade Wang spent half an hour on this. Please make it worth his while. EDIT: Thanks to ,Felix Edward Plant, for suggesting/inspiring another variation.

I'm from Africa I really like New Zealand ladies, can anyone advice me how to get to talk to them, I mean where can I get in touch?

Do not believe that all women from New Zealand are going to live up to your idealisms from just a few examples. I had a kiwi girlfriend that hid a diagnosed schizophrenic/mood disorder. Upon doing research, I found that mental illness is more prevalent amongst New Zealanders because the smaller population led to higher rates of incestuous breeding in the past. I find kiwi women to be very low-class and sexually disgusting from my experience, but they do have nice voices, it seems. Look at people as individuals on a case by case basis, not painted in childish idealisms of how everyone in a group is supposed to be in your imagination. There are going to be good and bad amongst all women. Your New Zealand fetish seems like a good way for you to miss out on finding a real woman and being dissappointed.

What are some mind-blowing facts about cricket?

Disclaimer: In no way do I intend to hurt the sentiments of a billion cricket fans and nor do I intend to malign the Superfan. This is just a news article that I read the other day. Forgive me if it hurts anyone. Well , we all know this man. The greatest cricket fan the country has ever had- Sudhir Kumar Chaudhry. He's been an ardent supporter of the INDIAN cricket team and more importantly Sachin Tendulkar. Everyone has a dark side or the other side. I mean I have it, you have it and everyone has it. This article is about his dark side which I read on IBN Live. I again repeat I do not intend to ridicule or criticize him. Here's the link ,World Cup: Do you really know Sudhir - the Sachin superfan? For those of you who do not wish to switch sites here's the article. Wellington: Adelaide. Melbourne. Perth. Hamilton. Auckland. He's everywhere the Indian team plays. Yet, he has no source of income. He's a frequent visitor at Sachin Tendulkar's plush Bandra residence, often sharing a meal with India's most wanted. Yet, he can't remember when last he spoke to his father. He carries a power bank to ensure his smartphone is never out of juice, you never know who might call. Yet, he never picks up when his only sister calls. Meet Sudhir Kumar Chaudhry, also known as Sudhir Gautam, the instantly recognisable Indian superfan. You know him because it seems no India match actually begins till he blows his conch. You know him because no Indian century celebration is complete without him waving the tricolour as if his life depended on it. You know him because he was on the balcony of the Wankhede Stadium in the wee hours of April 2, 2011, holding aloft the World Cup trophy with Tendulkar. You know him because he is in advertisements, on the radio, in newspapers, on television, wherever the cricket is, despite not being one of the privileged 15 who represent the country. But, do you really know Sudhir? Did you know that he quit three jobs to pursue the life he lives? First, at Sudha Dairy in Muzaffarpur in Bihar, where Sudhir says he was an allrounder, experienced at producing everything from kalakand to khowa. Having worked there just long enough to be eligible for gratuity, he quit at the first possible opportunity, using that money to get a passport so he could travel abroad with the Indian team. Then came the opportunity at Shiksha Mitra, one that was not a full-time job, and therefore, theoretically, allowed him the latitude to cheer India on. But, to accept that role, he had to undergo training in February 2004. Instead, he set off on his cycle to Pakistan in January, not giving the job a chance. Finally, in 2005, he passed both the physical test and a preliminary examination for a job as a ticket collector in Indian Railways, for a posting in Lal Goda, Hyderabad. When the call for an interview came, Sudhir realised that this would clash with the sixth India v Pakistan One-Day International in Delhi, you know, the one Parvez Musharraf attended. Obviously he had to be there, so Sudhir tore up the interview letter. When we sit down to speak, some 11,000 kilometres away from what either of us would call home, Sudhir is dressed like an Indian cricketer from head to toe. The Adidas shoes are a gift from Tendulkar, the matching Nike Team India training top, track pants and cap courtesy Ramesh Mane, the masseur. Sudhir does not wait for the ends of some questions, so familiar is he with them and so practiced his answers are. "In my childhood, I only watched cricket for Sachin Sir," says Sudhir, always referring to his idol thus, not taking the second name once. "There was a triangular series in which Australia and New Zealand were playing (in 2003). There was a match against Australia on November 1. I left home, by cycle, on October 8 and reached Mumbai on October 24, which was Diwali. For a day, I roamed around Mumbai, asking for Sachin Sir's house. I went to the Mumbai Cricket Association and met Professor Ratnakar Shetty and Lalchand Rajput, and explained to them that I was not asking for passes. I had no interest in the match. I just wanted to meet Sachin Sir. They shooed me away." Some journalists spotted Sudhir and told him that Tendulkar was to make an appearance at an event at the Trident Hotel the same day. Sudhir and his ever-present cycle stood in wait. "When Sachin Sir reached, all the photographers rushed to one side. I threw my cycle, pushed past people and security and ran. I touched Sachin Sir's feet for the first time, and he told me 'Sudhir, come to my house'." On October 29, Sudhir was not merely welcomed at Tendulkar's home, they shared a meal, and he was given a pass to watch the forthcoming ODI. "The next time I met him, my graduation exams were coming up. Sachin Sir told me to write my exam and come back, but there was an ODI against New Zealand at Cuttack," recalls Sudhir. "I could write my exam any time. So I went to the match. India were struggling, but when Sachin Sir was batting I ran on to the ground to touch his feet. The police caught me, and Sachin Sir told me not to come on to the ground, but he also told the police not to beat me. They listened to him, but threw me out." In a later match at the Lal Bahadur Shastri Stadium in Hyderabad, India fared better and Tendulkar made a century. "If I ran on to the field when India were doing badly, how could I not do so when Sachin Sir had scored a hundred," asks Sudhir. Again, Tendulkar told Sudhir not to enter the field. But, this time, the police were not so obliging. Far from Tendulkar's view, the police thrashed Sudhir, and took him to lock up in Secunderabad, releasing him only in the dark of night. There was a time when Sudhir's family wished he would get married, but he would not consent. "I have no source of income, I have given my life to cricket, nothing else matters," says Sudhir, and he is not exaggerating. At the rare times when he is home, Sudhir does not speak to his father. "If he sits down to eat, I get up and leave the room," he says, not quite as comfortable talking about his family as he is when reeling off his escapades in cricket. When you ask about home and hearth, Sudhir averts his eyes, and there's something unhinged about his behaviour. It's as though he can't understand why someone would be interested in knowing about such things. Sudhir refused to attend the weddings of either his younger brother or sister, being too busy at one match or another. Not once does Sudhir mention his mother, and when asked about his sister, he is dismissive. "She keeps calling me, but I never answer," he says. The calls increase in frequency in the lead-up to Raksha Bandhan, but this brother has no time for such ties. "One year I was in Bangladesh, one year in Sri Lanka. I don't have the time for such festivals," says Sudhir. "Even if I am in India, I will either be at a match or travelling to one." Muzaffarpur, as famous for its lychees as its lynch mobs, is the fourth most populous city in Bihar, and its fertile soil, fed by the rivers that wend their way down the Himalayas laden with goodness, lends itself perfectly to farming. It is on a farm that Sudhir's father works, a life that his three sons walked away from. Sudhir's eldest brother went the Shiksha Mitra route, the younger one, who was a mechanic at Maruti, is now a driver. Sudhir, of course, does not earn a living. "If you go to Muzaffarpur and see my house, you'll be embarrassed by how small it is. The walls are very old, and roof is caving in," says Sudhir. "Whenever it rains, the water seeps in, and there is more damage. It is a cement structure, but we don't know when the roof might fall in, it's that bad. It's reached a stage where it can't be repaired. The whole house has to be demolished and built again." When we're speaking, Sudhir's phone rings. It is a call from India, and he takes it, as it's not a pesky family member, but someone from the radio station that has sponsored his travel. In exchange, Sudhir features regularly on programmes - this call was to prep him for a show the forthcoming day - and sends across photographs and video clips taken on his phone. With the players having granted him rare access to their inner courtyard, these images and videos are gold dust in this age of social media and restricted access. While his costs at the World Cup are covered, Sudhir does not actually make any money out of his efforts, and he says that was never an aim. "What do I need money for? The only thing is travelling to matches. I used to go without a ticket on trains, but the ticket checker caught me when I was going to Kolkata after we won the World Cup," says Sudhir. "I told him about Sachin Sir and me, and he let me go. But then, the ticket checker told me that I was spoiling Sachin Sir's name by travelling ticketless. I have never again boarded a train without a ticket." There is a tribal mentality among extreme cricket fans, and Sudhir is no exception to this. Whether it is Sri Lanka's Percy, Pakistan's Bashir Chaacha, West Indies' Gravy or Ireland's Larry the Leprechaun, the one common streak is that they are extremely possessive of their team, conscious of the position they have each earned within the legion of fans. Where Sudhir is different, however, is the manner in which he has alienated his own family. Having asked how his journey began, it made sense to find out how Sudhir thought it might end. "My thinking is that while I am on this planet, I will cheer Team India, but with Sachin Sir's name written on my body," he says. "As long as I'm able to walk, I will carry his name." If this was mere bravado, you could take it with a pinch of salt, and move on. But to understand just how seriously Sudhir takes his vocation - waving the tricolour, blowing his conch, painting his body and cheering his team - look no further than that small house in Muzaffarpur where a father awaits a lost son, a mother remains unmentioned, a sister's calls go unanswered, and the roof is on the verge of collapse.

I'm building a camping trailer. What can I skin it with that will protect plywood, and be UV and weather resistant, and be smooth and light weight? Something like a fiberglass skin?

My parents joined the New Zealand Motor Caravan Association when I was a kid. How to weatherproof the roof of an old bus was a constant topic of conversation. (The sides aren’t such a problem, you can just paint them and touch them up when necessary.) One idea which was enthusiastically taken up by several members uses only some oil-based paint (has to be oil-based, acrylic doesn’t work) and a number of old bedsheets, enough to cover the roof twice over. Paint the roof, being generous with the paint. Quickly cover it with half the sheets, smoothing out bubbles and pressing them into the paint. Trim the edges. Paint it again. Place the rest of the sheets on top, staggering the layout so the joins don’t match up. Paint it a third time. This is the only coat that will be visible, so you can use up random scraps of paint on the bottom layers. The inner layer of paint takes years or decades to dry out fully, so you end up with a covering that is cheap, reasonably lightweight, weatherproof, and self-sealing.

Do you get emotional when you see Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary (Sachin's fan) still reminding us of Tendulkar in every match?

In a country of 1.2 billion people, most of who are obsessed with cricket, how do they stand out as the biggest cricket fan of them all?, ​ That's what sets Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary apart from the others. We've all seen him on television, his body painted in the Indian colours, with Sachin Tendulkar's name painted across, blowing the conch and waving the Indian flag incessantly. Many of us have even spotted him during India matches. 1. ,His love affair with cricket started in 2002., Sachin Tendulkar scored 36 runs against England at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata, and an awestruck Sudhir was enchanted enough to give up everything and follow him. 2. ,The next year, in 2003, India was hosting New Zealand and Australia in a tri-series. In 3 weeks, Sudhir cycled 1700 kms from Muzaffarpur, Bihar, to Mumbai., His sole intention upon reaching was to meet Tendulkar. 3. ,He learnt about Sachin's press conference at the Trident Hotel. When Sachin arrived, he waded through journalists and photographers and fell at Sachin's feet. ,The Indian batting legend invited him home for lunch. 4. ,Sachin had lunch with him and gave him a ticket for an upcoming match., Sudhir had graduation exams coming up so Sachin advised him to go attend them and return after completing them. But Sudhir stayed. He figured he could write his exams anytime he wanted. 5., In the match against New Zealand at Cuttack, India were in trouble so he ran on to the pitch to touch Sachin's feet., Tendulkar told the police not to beat Sudhir up but he was still thrown out of the stadium. ​ 6. "If I ran on to the field when India were doing badly, how could I not do so when Sachin Sir had scored a hundred," says Sudhir in an interview with Wisden India. But this time, the police did not show any mercy. Sudhir was beaten up and jailed. 7. It has since become a yearly event. Sudhir travels to Mumbai to deliver 1000 litchis (a fruits which grows in abundance in his village in Muzaffarpur) at Tendulkar's house. Sachin, in turn, sponsors his tickets to allow India matches. 8. ,Sudhir has quit 3 different jobs to follow the Indian team around the world. ,He first quit a job at Sudha Dairy in Muzaffarpur as soon as he had enough money to obtain a passport and travel abroad with Team India. 9. During India's tour of Pakistan, he stayed with Chacha, Pakistan cricket's most famous fan, in Lahore. 10. He would often travel to stadiums across the country by train, but he wouldn't buy tickets. ,Once he was caught and only escaped a fine by proving that he was Sachin Sir's biggest fan. The ticket collector told him that by travelling without a ticket, he was spoiling Tendulkar's name. ,Sudhir claims he has never travelled without a ticket since then. 11. Ever since the IPL started, ,he has been supporting Mumbai Indians because it is Sachin Sir's team., 12. He missed IPL season 2 because it was held in South Africa and he could not fund his trip on short notice. 13. In 2009, he was beaten up severely in Kanpur after he scaled a fence to get to where the Indian team was practicing. Sachin saved him from the cops but advised Sudhir against such attempts. 14. For the duration of the 2011 World Cup, starting with India's opening match against Bangladesh in Mirpur, Sudhir started sporting a mini World Cup replica on his head. He claims he knew 2011 would be India's lucky year. 15. His prediction was correct and after India won the World Cup at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, Sachin called him into the dressing room for the post-match celebrations. Sudhir was even allowed to hold the World Cup trophy aloft, chanting 'India, India'. ​ 16. Earlier, he had 'Sachin' painted on his torso during matches. But ever since Sachin retired, he has changed that to 'Miss U Sachin.' 17. His paint was confiscated by the New Zealand airport security when he was travelling to Auckland for India's match against Zimbabwe. Liquids were not allowed on the flight and he was fined Rs 65,000 for violating the law.Sudhir escaped the fine by showing Sachin's letter to the embassy. 18. ,At 33, Sudhir is still unmarried. He has stayed single because he does not want to spoil a girl's life as following the Indian cricket team would always be his priority., 19. Supporting the Indian cricket team seems to be the only thing on his mind. "My thinking is that while I am on this planet, I will cheer Team India, but with Sachin Sir’s name written on my body. As long as I’m able to walk, I will carry his name," said Sudhir to Wisden India.

What is your best experience about Sachin Tendulkar's 200* inning?

What better day to reminisce that moment than the Master Blaster’s birthday! A warm February afternoon ten years ago, a certain eighth-grade kid was rushing home, on account of his Math tuition being canceled. The aforementioned kid is a cricket fanatic, and as many 90s kids down south, had painted his first coconut-wood bat with three red letters. M-R-F. So, the kid reached home early, and just as the thrill of the canceled class was melting away, remembered the riveting cricket game scheduled-, India’s second ODI against South Africa. ,On went the TV and the stalwart at a point where he had stumbled multiple times in the past. The nervous 90s. ,Of course, you could see him a little worried, as he slowed a little down. “Man, not again, please, we’re just nearing the halfway point in the innings, you’ve all the time in the world!” Well, though it took a while, he got a single to backward point to his century. ,Number 46. “Okay, that does it!”, the relieved kid said. However, the next ball was smashed through midwicket for a four and the commentators exclaimed, “Well if he goes at this rate, he might even get to 200!” “Lol, 200? Isn’t that a bit too ambitious? It’s freaking South Africa we’re playing against. They’re gonna get their revenge soon, those relentless bowlers!”,, the kid laughed it off, strolling to the bathroom. Half an hour later, the kid switched on the TV again and saw Tendulkar had already reached the 140s- with a nonchalant flick through midwicket for another boundary. “That’s… unusual… I’m almost certain he’s gonna get to 150, he has, many times before. But, I’ve also seen him getting retired hurt, remember the one against New Zealand?” “Well, he’s three years older now. Will he have the stamina to bat through to beat that ODI world record? Ugh, that 175 against Australia. Why was he unable to get there then?!!” Memories of the recent heartbreak welled up his eyes. But the next shot through point off Steyn calmed his nerves a bit. The ball was coming nicely to the bat. The pitch looked like the proverbial batsman’s paradise. ,And it was the great man probably at his very best. However, every time the ball lobbed up, his heart skipped a beat. Is another heartbreak round the corner? Sunday sports articles questioning the viability of an ODI 200+ were still fresh in his memories… 300 crossed. And that too with a magnificent shot over long-on. He was slowly beginning to believe- ,“Maybe it is possible, maybe today is going to be the day?” Like every other illogical kid watching his childhood idol play, he crossed his arms, started praying- or rather, talking to The God on the pitch. “That was a great shot, right over the bowler’s head. But we still gotta move ahead. First, let’s reach your best score. You’re at 179 now. Eight more runs, come-on, Sachin…” “,Yes! You’ve gone past yourself. That’s another of your glorious flicks. You’ve been playing so well. Keep on, Sachin… Next stop, 194… You’re the best of the best, you deserve to be at the top of the tree” And he reached there, with another deft touch through to fine leg… “Yes!!! You’ve reached there too! Five more runs, sir, just five more!” Coincidentally, now our beloved captain decided to go bonkers at the other end- so much that our hero didn’t even get to strike the ball. And our boy lost his cool. “WHAT ON EARTH IS DHONI DOING??? Dude, you gotta give the strike to Sachin!! He’s on course for a double hundred! Let him get there first, idiot! Then you can do whatever you like!!!” His granny came running over from the kitchen, inquiring what was the shout about. She had one glance at the screen, saw Sachin batting, and turned to him, “,Sachin century adichaa? (meaning did Sachin hit a century?)” And the guy went, “,Illenne, mattavan adikkaan sammathikkande?? (meaning, “No, the other guy isn’t letting him!”)” Well, the grown-up boy now understands how Sachin usually got tensed at the threshold of a milestone, thanks Dhoni for taking the pressure to score quicker off from the rather nervous Sachin, and regrets hurling the choicest of expletives at the captain. Believe me, he does. But by then, nature had started giving him her calls! As any diligent fan of the game, even with almost five overs to go, he decided to “stand his ground”, as “moving from the spot would make a wicket fall”. And that was the last thing he wanted… 196, 197, 198, 199… And finally with that iconic chip to the third man… “…gets it.. first man on the planet to reach 200, and it’s the Superman from India… Sachin Tendulkar, 200 from 147, take a bow, master…” “Ah, you little champion, if there was anyone deserving to reach this milestone, this Everest, it's certainly Sachin Tendulkar!” An entire nation went ballistic! Ah, just feels like yesterday, immortal at 200! -,The same illogical simpleton of a boy!

As a man, how have you restored a broken relationship with your father?

I spoke to my Dad on and off from ages 0 - 10. My Dad was tyrannical growing up. He slept with other women, he drank a lot and was abusive to my mother and when he did call it was when he felt like it. It became so bad that my mum moved my brother and I across from Brisbane, Australia to Clyde, New Zealand. It was at this point I stopped talking to my father as everything I knew about him only resulted in disappointment and I hated him for doing what he had done to my mum. My younger brother though still missed our Dad and kept in touch via phone. My mum kept in touch with my Dad to make sure he met his child support payments and that she received what she was entitled to look after us. When I was 12 my younger brother really wanted to see his Dad again. So as an 11 year old he jumped on the plane and went over to Australia. This is when my Dad kidnapped my brother. What ended up as a six month court battle between my mother and my father he ended up coming back to New Zealand. I didn’t speak to my father again for the next six years. At the age of 18 I met my father again as a young man. We spoke briefly for five minutes when he came to New Zealand for a holiday with his new wife and my half sister Kaitlyn. We then began to speak again on and off for the next two years. Finally, I spent a bit of time getting to know both my sister and my Dad on Skype calls. I invited him to my 21st birthday party and began to learn more about my Dad as my relationship with my own mother began to deteriorate. When I was growing up my mum had shown some odd tendencies which I thought were normal because I’d never known any different until I spoke to other people about it. My mum when I was a child drank heavily most nights. My mum when I was a child didn’t work she just lived off of my Dad’s child support. My mum when I was a child said she loved me but would also take this back. My mum when I was a child used to take a portion of my wages from my part time job to run the house. As I became an adult I realized that a lot of these behaviors weren’t normal but abnormal. My Dad as it turns out knew this and tried to remove himself from the situation but was painted as a villain. I found this out by asking him at my twenty first birthday party. The day my Dad left us and moved out permanently was because he couldn’t deal with my mothers drinking problems. As a police officer my Dad tried to pull us out of our mothers care but during her moments of lucidity she managed to convince the courts of my Dad’s supposed malice. My Dad called and wrote letters to us every week and my mum would hide these from us. When we moved to New Zealand my Dad would call us every week but my mum would tell us that he never called. When my brother was “kidnapped” it turns out that my brother wanted to stay longer in Australia and told this to my mum on the phone. My mum then told my eleven year old brother that no one would be at the airport to pick him up if he came home. The ensuing court battle was actually closer than I knew but the court made the decision not to separate my brother and I and believed it was for the good of the family. Two years after I left home my mother was diagnosed with bi-polar disease and depression and there was speculation that this had been undiagnosed for years. Today I no longer speak to my mother because of the way she treated me and I now only speak my Dad. I’ve spent Christmas’s with my Dad, I spent his 50th with him and I talk to him on a fortnightly basis. I apologized to my Dad because as much as I thought I knew everything about him as a person growing up I only knew a story that had been fabricated. My Dad had to wait 21 years before he could have a proper relationship with his son. Today men have become easy targets for malicious women and they are unfairly judged purely because of their gender. My mother who was a drunk, mentally unstable and unemployed for 90% of her life managed to keep two sons she wasn’t able to raise. My Dad who has been a police officer for over thirty years, rarely drank and has protected the lives of others for a living was denied to access to his children, because of the lies of someone else and a female court who thought he was unfit to look after children. I spent 21 years of my life estranged from my Dad and it wasn’t his fault. Today I’m proud to call my father, my Dad and if you’re reading this Dad I’m sorry it took me so long to realize what happened.

Would you share some of your own creative work with us?

I'll share my latest project, a resin and polymer clay ,MINIATURE FISHPOND,, and the details of how I made it. About a week ago I bought this little bowl for £1 in a supermarket sale. I knew I wanted to do something crafty with it, but wasn't sure what. Then a comment on a previous answer reminded me of the miniature worlds I used to make as a child, and I had an idea. I filled the base with resin, blue dye, blue glitter, and some powdered blue eye shadow for extra sparkle. I'm using this Gedeo two part epoxy resin for the water effect, which dries completely clear and hard. Building it up in layers makes it look like objects are suspended and floating in the water., (I'm not on commission from these people or anything, I just think it's a really good resin and one of the only types readily available in the UK). Next layer, I used a much paler aqua dye and some iridescent glitter. The shell is one I found on holiday in New Zealand and the white stone is from a beach in Northumberland. I love adding little personal touches to all my craft projects to make them feel extra special. I think that's why I find it so hard to sell the things that I make - I can't resist putting that much of myself into them. I added a few gold and silver gems, maybe to look like coins thrown into the pond, from my collection of glitter and gem jars. I love these little jars so much! I get 8 of them each time for £1 in The Works and it makes me feel like I have my own fairy apothecary filled with magic and sparkle! The next layer is gravel, a pot from a doll's house, some imitation plants cut to size, a pearl (those tiny details again), and the first fish. (I really liked it at this stage. Part of me feels like I should have left it like that. Simplicity has its own appeal. But I never learn, so I decide to add some more…) I am making the decorations from polymer clay… I colour them with acrylic paint for a more natural look. Here we go! The frog is in the pond. One last layer of resin, a lily, the last few fish (and some fish food, of course), some stars for the reflection of the night sky and it's done… Here are some more pictures that show the pond from other perspectives (the stars and sequins are transparent/iridescent and show from some angles but not others). It's really hard to capture the 3D effect on camera, but perhaps you can imagine it… Hope you like it! It's the first miniature scene I've made with resin, but now I'm inspired I plan to make many more! Thanks for the A2A, Leon! :-)

What is the most emotional picture you've ever seen?

For most of my life I was an only child raised by my strict but loving Single Mother. I visit my Father as a child from time to time, then it stopped for 10 years, then got to reconcile with him at 20 years old and got to know him more up until 2015 before I moved to New Zealand. This picture with my parents was taken last 2015 after I had my knee surgery. My Father died the next year. It was the only family picture I have with me.

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