Outside it’s sunny, a hot, muggy Auckland day. A plump Tui swings on the untidy flax bush by the bedroom’s open window; slothful clouds drift past in a china-blue sky. But inside the bedroom it’s cold, chilly enough to raise goose-pimples. Despite the golden light outside, the room is shadowy, its corners dim and blurry.
Category archive: Nostalgia
Excerpts from Kiwiosities, a book by Gordon Ell on the traditions and folklore of New Zealand.
The Spanish Helmet
Dredged off Petone in 1906, the Spanish Helmet has been the inspiration of many suggestions that Abel Tasman was not the first European to discover New Zealand. The headpiece, now in the care of Te Papa /Tongarewa Museum of of New Zealand, is of a European type used between 1560 and 1570. The dredge that brought up the helmet also brought up a cannonball and, it is said. some coins, though these have not been sighted since.
Last November I went to a memorial service for those whose relations or friends had died during the previous 12 months. It was organised by the funeral directors with whom my mother had arranged her prepaid funeral and who had efficiently, calmly and professionally helped us organise her obsequies in early December, 2018.
High Noon, informally, is the when time the sun reaches its highest point in the sky. It is traditionally regarded as a time for high drama, as in the 1952 movie High Noon. At High Noon in New Zealand on Saturday, 1st February 2020, it will be 23:00 GMT. It will be the moment the UK inflicts upon itself, perhaps the greatest self-harm in its long history. It will break its 46 year membership of the EU.
Back in the days when fewer household conveniences were available, if hot milk was required it was boiled over an open fire. A superstition grew that if the mild boiled over and some fell on the coals, then bad luck would come to the house – unless someone very quickly sprinkled salt on the area.
It took the devastating Australian bushfires to bring home to the country’s politicians that perhaps, maybe, they had to update their thinking on climate change. Perhaps, because that thinking remains dominated by an ideology which increasingly looks untethered to present day realities. Below are some of those realities:
Watching television was now beginning to be ingrained in the 60’s household social routine not entirely due to the magnetism of Ena Sharples and the Coronation Street’s Rover’s Return!
Waiting in the wings was Networking, the move of News to Auckland, the advent of colour and the famous Philips K9 TV set and TV2’s first Telethon.