Whakapirau Bay

    A lovely water’s edge house filled with colourful  art works in flax, mosaic and paint,  looking across an inlet to Pahi,  on the north-eastern Kaipara Harbour…a very restful place to take a break. We read books on the fascinating local history – including Dick Scott’s Seven Lives on Salt River, about early Maori occupation and […]

Diversity in Dunedin…

We had a week in Dunedin last month – and managed to find all the ingredients of a fine holiday: catching up with family and friends, lesbian company, cultural activities, conservation projects, and a political visit. We stayed the first night with former Aucklander, Pleasance, in her hilltop villa, and joined a monthly dinner group of Dunedin lesbians.  Ann Charlotte, whom we met there, […]

Towards “A Ukulele Revolution”

(from left) Joe, Bernard, Tanya and Charmaine with some of Bernard’s beautiful instruments We have an exciting new project – helping to raise funds for a ukulele-making workshop and training centre in Poutasi, on the south-east coast of Upolu, Samoa.  This village was destroyed by the 2009 tsunami, partially rebuilt, and then severely damaged again by […]

A new Coromandel enterprise..

A highlight of our recent holiday weekend in Coromandel was going for a guided walk with Jamie Watson, a young local Maori man planning to develop a Maori tourism enterprise in the area. We met him at Driving Creek  Café after our trip on the Driving Creek Railway with our friends Shila and Farida.  We admire […]

Samoa scenes…

We’ve just returned from the winter warmth of Samoa and Tanya’s 70th birthday. Here’s a few glimpses of our week… Flowers…     Fale…     Poutasi Village Developments : Crafts, Education and Gardens…       Church on Sunday, of course: the Methodist Church in Siumu     Tanya’s 70th birthday surprise from Sinalei Staff… accompanied by “Manuia lou […]

Whole House: ReUse – not Refuse

The Whole House ReUse Project was founded and codirected by two women: Juliet Arnott and Kate McIntyre. With teams organised by Rekindle   almost 100 artists and craftspeople from throughout Aotearoa (and beyond) have turned a red-zone Christchurch building into 390 creative works ranging from a 4m x 2.5m studio-sleepout, and dining suites, to an elegant Maori flute, […]

Christchurch-Otautahi

We’re in Christchurch for a few days this week – to see the Whole House Re-Use exhibition in the Canterbury Museum (open till August 24th), to explore the new Christchurch emerging from the ruins of the 2010-11 earthquakes, and to visit family and old friends. The  Whole House Re-Use project is so powerful and important […]

cranes, containers, construction, creation, contrast…

The central city engages us, shocks us, grieves and enchants us. It is a personal experience, human stories around every corner. the cathedral, its new gateway a tiny wooden whare with richly planted roof and sides, its gaping nave a black cave with pigeons roosting in it giant cranes nudging each other in the sky- […]