In focus: piano in Cambridge, Black Panther and other things we love


April/May issue deadline made these past two weeks very intense! But we always find time to enjoy little positive things that surround us everywhere. Noticed something worth mentioning? Let us know on Facebook!

Patio Rose café at Villa Ridge Garden Centre is right up there as one of our favourite Bethlehem go-to places. Not only does the café have a good selection of both sweet and savoury treats but it has a variety of seating areas so, if you’re early enough, you can choose a table overlooking the gardening section or a quiet spot in a secluded corner.

We love the large groupings of colourful seasonal flowers and the eclectic range of interesting, artistic pieces that are dotted around the garden centre. Teapots, cups and saucers, all balance artistically; plates form a mosaic wall and a pair of jeans has been used creatively as a flower pot – you’ll have to visit the gardening centre to see what we mean!

An opportunity to spend an hour in Cambridge presented itself this week. We were surprised to learn that 18,400 residents choose to call Cambridge home – its town centre is small but its proximity to Hamilton and Tauranga and many attractions such as Hobbiton, the Waitomo Caves, Hamilton Gardens and the Avantidrome make for a bustling township.

It’s a beautiful drive into Cambridge – the Waikato River is so picturesque and the recent rains have turned the lush countryside a gorgeous green.

With so many things to see and do in Cambridge, it was the sight of this colourful piano that caught our eye. The piano sits there, inviting anyone to tinkle her ivories. Luckily for the milling crowd we decide not to demonstrate our lack of musical ability.

After the captivating and hilarious Thor: Ragnarok, directed by Taika Waititi from New Zealand, expectations for the next Marvel movie, Black Panther, were extremely high. And the movie has far outperformed them!

A story of T’Challa, new king of Wakanda, is a refreshing approach to superheroes movies. Unlike most of the hits produced by Marvel‘s genius, it’s not only about epic battles and borderline jokes. Don’t be disappointed, the iconic humour and breathtaking visual effects are still there! But Black Panther also demonstrates the crucial importance of family values, traditions and ancestors’ legacy. Commitment to these points (and an inexhaustible stock of powerful metal called vibranuim, of course) made Wakanda the world’s most technologically advanced country, that now has to face an unexpected external threat…

Libertine Blends is a Wellington-based organic hand blended tea, created by Jacqui Wales in 2014. She has been working with naturopaths to create perfect teas for different occasions. For example, bold and warming Kapow tea with kawakawa, chilli, lemongrass and cardamom boosts your energy and improves digestion; Minty Ohm tea with mint, mānuka, lemon balm and rosemary detoxifies blood and helps you to concentrate.

Runaway Rose tea is our favourite! The hero ingredient with a tiny touch of lavender, elderflower and vanilla helps to relax and calm the heart. Exactly what was needed for a deadline week! We enjoy drinking it before going to sleep.

Fitness Blender is our go-to workout website. Exercising whenever and wherever you want? Yes, please. All the programs are free conveniently categorized. You can choose appropriate video based on its duration (from 5 minutes up to 1 hour), difficulty (from 1 to 5), equipment you want to use (if any), body zone to focus on and type or training (cardio, HIIT, pilates, kettlebell, etc.).

Nothing like a 15-minutes break for a stretch at lunchtime or a HIIT to shake the stress out after work. But our favourite cycle is “Workouts for those who get bored easily” – you will never do the same exercise twice during an entire workout! Training duo Kelli and Daniel make them fun, diverse and very down to Earth. So much nicer to follow people, who are getting tired and sore by the end of the class just like “normal” people!

By the way, they have multi-day challenges and delicious healthy recipes.