I hadn’t heard of David Suzuki, before I read this book which provides insights into what it means to grow up in a culture that is not the country’s mainstream.  David was born in Canada of Japanese parents who were also Canadian-born, and his internment during World War II had a lasting effect.  Having trained as a scientist he went on to host radio and television programmes dealing with the environment, more recently global warming, and works passionately to protect the planet.

He compares the short-term perspective of employees and investors with the long-term perspective of environmentalists and First Nations people.  Much of what he writes about Canada and Australia mirrors the New Zealand experience.  Early settlers often survived only because of the knowledge and generosity of the indigenous people, and the latter have had to fight to retain control over a small part of the land, which is so integral to their culture.  He points out that indigenous knowledge built up over thousands of years of careful observation, experimentation, and insight is being lost all over the planet in just a few generations and can never be recovered.

I found it interesting to read how he set up a charity and fundraised for it (pre social media), but by page 250 I was beginning to feel as though I’d read it all before in reports of Values/Green issues and protests, and I skipped the next hundred pages.  The penultimate chapter about the culture of celebrity was interesting, as were his thoughts as he grows old.  He quotes his dying father, and says he has similar sentiments:  “I will return to nature where I came from.  I’ll be part of the fish, the trees, the birds – that’s my reincarnation.  I have had a rich and full life and have no regrets.  I will live on in your memories of me and through my grandchildren.”

“We must help nature live and thrive
if life on earth is to survive.”


Beginning Blossom

Lovely to see this blossom down Colombo Street this morning.

It’s cold and the solstice is still five days away, but the message is that spring is coming.

“To see the blossom flowering there
makes me think spring is in the air.”


Weapons Wanted

The worker on the right has a t-shirt with a good slogan.  It reads “Weapons of Mass Construction”.

“To use these weapons to rebuild
we need tradespeople who are skilled.”

Gaping Gloucester

Gloucester Street Bridge is finally open again.  It’s been closed for almost four years.  The traffic lights at the Durham/Gloucester Street intersection are operational once more, and it’s possible to walk or drive across the bridge.  Once over, the only choice at present is to head north on Cambridge Terrace, but I appreciate having another option in this area.

“The Gloucester Bridge has opened wide
with access to the other side.”

Releasing Records

Our collection of LPs had been taking up room.  Although we still have a turntable we never play records these days, we’ve replaced many with CDs, and any tune you want can be found on Youtube.  So, I decided to sell the record collection.  I listed them on TradeMe as a “Collection of over 150 LPs from 1960s and 1970s includes rock, pop, folk, shows, classical, and women’s music” with a starting price of $200.  Fours days later there were 18 ‘watchers’ but as yet no bidders.  Two different young men came to look through them.  One was a serious collector, told me he was likely to bid, but wouldn’t go much over $200.  He also said I’d been wise to sell them online rather than take them to a dealer.

Nobody bid until eight minutes before the auction closed, then there was a flurry of 20 bids, and the closing price was $290.

Clearing the shelves where the LPs used to live has meant I’ve been able to properly arrange the CDs and that corner is much less cluttered.  Now, where shall I start next?

“With all the records gone away
there’s just C.D.s and tapes to play.”

Accessible Areas

Both quads of the Arts Centre are now open, and hosting new sculptures.  I couldn’t find any reference to title or artist for these, but gather they may be the work of fine arts students, and part of the Whakahoki exhibition.

Sculpture in North Quad

Sculpture in South Quad

“These sculptures don’t yet have a name
denying those artists their fame.”




Purrfect Pair

Stephen needs new slippers, but sadly I could not persudae him to buy these ones even though they were his size.

Fluffy feet for men

You’d think he’d have been keen to have feet that matched Ziggy’s!

Ziggy’s fluffy feet

“He did not want his little piggies
to look exactly just like Ziggy’s.”