On the road

Long time no blog. I’m currently in Whakatane – the second trip in 2 weeks so have gotten out of the blog habit a bit.

A few observations from my time on the road:

  • Travelling alone has meant that I’ve found myself turning to spoken word as the preferred form of entertainment rather than trying to sing (more like croon) along to Moby. I never listen to National Radio (I don’t feel like I’m grown up enough) but have done on both trips up. And I admit – there are some interesting interviews. However, I’ve heard 3 people being interviewed about things they’ve done in their lives – the head of the Media Studies school at Auckland University, Frankie Stevens and Grace Bumbry (American opera singer). What struck me was when talking about their lives and achievements the focus all seems to be on the 60’s and 70’s which I found intruiging. Is this because these people were all in their 20’s/30’s at that stage and these were the defining times in their lives, the time when they really solidified who they were and the time of most impact/achievement? Or generally were the 60’s and 70’s the time when it all happened? Nothing particularly recent was talked about as though perhaps these people are doing nothing now. Which is clearly not the case – Frankie Stevens is still alive and kicking and performing, but perhaps just not doing great things like he did 30 years ago.

  • Chooks – there is a whole flock/school/gaggle/barnyard (?) of chooks in a rest area on State Highway 1 just out of Foxton. Doesn’t seem to be a farm nearby – they seem to be wild and colourful creatures. Obviously smart though because on this last trip up I brought some crusts with me for them and as I pulled into the rest area they were running up to the car before I’d even stopped! And not just running, but positively tearing along, legs splayed and circling like rotor blades as only running chooks can do! They seemed to have very furry legwarmers on – later I learned there are probably Bantam hens. They loved the bread anyway 🙂

  • Brown Sugar – as in the cafe. Always humming. Strange way of taking and filling orders given that it’s not unusual for them to have a queue out the door. You’d think they were surprised each time to have more than 3 customers. They have Supreme coffee but are not that great at making it despite overhearing people in the 15 minute queue telling their companions that ‘no, were are not going somewhere else. These guys have the best coffee in the country.’ Ummmm.


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