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Posts Tagged ‘Poplar Crescent’

After recent flooding I was not surprised to see a sign on Poplar Crescent, beside the Madras Street Bridge, warning that the river may be polluted.

There was no such sign by the jetty in the Margaret Mahy Family Playground, a very short dstance away.  Surely any pollution would be there too, with the added possibility of children touching the water.

What was beside the jetty was a black swan.

I haven’t seen one of these so far upriver before.  Prior to the earthquakes there was a pair who nested near the Fitzgerald Avenue Bridge, but I haven’t seen them for years.  Maybe we’ll have some cygnets in the Loop this year.

“Polluted water is no bar
to a swan who’s come this far.”

 

 

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As I walked home down Poplar Crescent on Monday I noticed mysterious writing on the footpath opposite the Centennial Pool, and wondered what it was about.

Public spaces

Public spaces

Grandstand site

Grandstand site

Instant public space

Instant public space

All was revealed in this morning’s “Press”.  Alejandro Haiek Coll, a Venezuelan artist and architect, who is artist-in-residence at The Physics Room had set up a viewing platform where people could sit and watch the demolition.  I didn’t see the actual installation, but the markings were intriguing.

“This kind of art is lots of fun
– intriguing stuff for anyone.”

 

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“I want to walk where the paths know my feet”  I read this in a story about an Afghan woman being urged to leave her home village, and it resonated!

Rob Gordon says our routines are an important part of our procovery.  This past year I’ve established routes for walking to and from work.  In the morning I go via Latimer Square and St Asaph Street.  I come home through Cathedral Square, New Regent Street, and Poplar Crescent beside the river.  Some of these are paths I’ve trodden for decades, and I know my ancestors trod them too.  There’s comfort and security on these familiar paths, many of which were forbidden for months, or even years, after the earthquakes.

Over the last week there’s been an increase in obstacles and detours on my chosen way.  On Kilmore Street, Oxford Terrace, Gloucester Street. Armagh Street, and Manchester Street  I now need to negotiate my way around new wire fences and past more ‘Footpath closed’ signs.  I know that roads and infrastructure need repair, but the continual disruption makes me angry and frustrated.  There’s a website where motorists can find out which roads are closed today, but I’m not aware of such a facility for pedestrians.  When will it ever end?

“Whichever way I plan to go
it seems that someone will say “No!”

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Some young men have set up camp in Poplar Crescent beside the Edmonds Clock Tower.  I saw them yesterday, lounging in the sunshine.  Today it’s colder, and their tents are all closed up.

Camping beside the river

Camping beside the river

Freedom camping is not a permitted activity in this part of town, and I hate to think what they’re using for a toilet – probably the Avon River!  I wonder how long it will be before they’re moved on.

This is a lovely place to stay
but tents are really not okay.”

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The strong winds last week were too much for this tree at the eastern end of Poplar Crescent.

Broken Poplar

Broken Poplar

There’s still a lot of leafy growth on it so I hope it may be able to be saved.  Poplar Crescent was planted in 1929 as part of Thomas Edmonds’ gift to mark his fifty years’ residence in the city.

“Strong winds were too much for this tree
a part of Christchurch history.”

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We celebrated our anniversary with dinner at Venuti.  Pre-earthquake our favourite Italian restaurant was Portofino on Oxford Terrace.  The owners of that place now run Venuti, in a brand new building in Colombo Street, near the Kilmore Street corner.  Currently this seems rather an isolated spot, and we were pleased to find that it was busy and bustling on a Wednesday night.  By 7.45 all the tables were full and there were people waiting.

The outlook is a newly-revealed view of Poplar Crescent, which I guess will disappear with the rebuild.  Opposite on Colombo Street is the almost complete Forte Health building.  The sunset was attractively reflected in its highly glazed glass walls.

Dinner at Venuti

Dinner at Venuti

The meal was perfect.  After a pizza bread starter we both had a melt-in-the-mouth eye fillet, followed by tiramisu.  The latter was rich, and I managed only half of mine.  Another time I think one between two would be plenty, and I’m sure there will be another time.  This restaurant is a welcome addition to our local neighbourhood.

On paying the bill by Eftpos I was surprised when an option came up saying “Add Tip – Yes/No”.  I hadn’t come across this before, and pushed the ‘No’ button.  While the service had been fine, I don’t want to encourage local tipping.  In England we almost always paid cash, and I wonder whether they too have this option on Eftpos machines.  I don’t think so,because while daughters often paid with a card, they left tips in cash.  Maybe this is another way in which Aotearoa leads the world in technology?

“I unreservedly can say
Venuti’s fine in every way.”

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