Toys for the Boys

  We are doing our best to ignore all the fuss currently going on in Auckland surrounding the America’s Cup.  And the costs… the Government is paying more than $136 million and Auckland Council almost $99 million…and for what? A few bizarre-looking ‘boats’ trying to fly on the Waitematā Harbour… Chris Rattue, in his excellent […]

Farewell and gratitude for a wise elder…

    We are specially sad to hear of the recent death of Dr Rangimarie Turuki Arikirangi Rose Pere. We are hugely respectful of her deep wairua, courage, liveliness of spirit and vision, and her extensive work in education,  in Aotearoa and around the world.  We have admired her ability to challenge conventional Pākehā wisdom […]


A World Away i te Nota (in the North) Our big adventure this month has been a six-day holiday in Tai Tokerau (Northland).  Most of our exploring was around Te Hokianga-nui-a-Kupe, the birthplace of Aotearoa – one of the very oldest areas of settlement by the Pasifika voyagers who were to become tangata whenua. It’s […]

A Political Painting..

We’re grateful to Garth, Tanya’s brother, for lending us this powerful painting by Margaret Lawlor-Bartlett- an 85-year-old grandmother!  She painted it in 2015- and now in her 90s, she is still painting, after a 60 year career as an artist. It will be displayed next year in a retrospective of her work over many decades. […]

Happy Helpful Honda!

We’ve just been thinking how lucky we are to still have our 2001 Honda.  She is now almost 20 years old, has seen us from the farm days through to the city, has done 456,120km, has a few mended scratches,  bangs and rust patches, and has faded somewhat from her original marvellous mauve.  But she […]

Busy in the City…

  Before our Northland journey, we’d had a rather busy month – a mix, as usual, of supporting NZ drama, films,  music and books, indulging and learning…as well as gardening (Tanya) and Isaac Body Corp Owners’ Committee (Charmaine) Three very different films: Rose Matafeo’s Baby Done –  a riotously funny journey with a top woman […]

ELECTIONS: Aotearoa and DSA

  Aotearoa In the final tally, Labour won a clear 50% of seats (i.e.60 of the 120). National lost a further two seats so now has only 33 on the final tally.   As we  hoped, the Maori Party now has two MPs, Rawiri Waititi and Debbie Ngarewa-Packer (one electorate seat and one list MP).    […]

Elections 2020 in Aotearoa

      Sunday 18 October – the day after our  elections How lucky we are to live in a country where a warm, eloquent and truthful woman Prime Minister has been able to hold our nation together during the difficult times of the last three years.  We  hoped that Jacinda Ardern and the Labour-led […]