Sunday, 21 October 2012


Wellington is a small city. More than that it is a city of smallness. By that I mean it is a city of nooks and crannies, winding one-way streets and networks of maze-like walkways tucked behind, beneath and around the undulating topography of the southern tip of the North Island. It stands in stark contrast to what Elsje and I, coming from Southern Africa, are accustomed to, that is, vast expanses of land, crossed with dead straight ribbons of tar which stretch out the gaze to dissolve on the shimmering horizon. Such a way of viewing the land and the cities upon which it is built informs the way you look at a new place. In the states we felt very much at home - vastness, check; shiny black ribbons, check; been driving for 24 hours in Texas and still in Texas, check. If you drive for twelve hours either north or south of Wellington you end up in the drink, east or west a fraction of that time. And so a city, a place, of smallness. Its nature, its appeal, is hidden to our far-reaching gaze and for the better part of this year we've missed most of what Wellington has to offer. The suburbs are so small you can drive for five minutes and pass through three without realising it. But therein lies the challenge of the place; it takes unpacking, like a jade miniature, the more you look the more you see. It's convoluted, always folding back upon itself, seeming to hide its treasures until one adjusts one's gaze. Today was a day of adjustment and we found a little jewel of a place called Breaker Bay.

A rather odd (and somewhat sinister I feel) memorial to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the first leader of the Republic of Turkey. There is also mention of the ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) troops which fought and died at Gallipoli in Turkey in 1915. 


There was an insect skeleton caught up in a spider web on this tree. The wind was making the leaves play games with the light and every time the sun would shine on this insect skeleton, because it was hollow, it would glow and seem to give off this halo of light.

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