From little seeds, big things grow
The idea of a Waiheke-based eco festival was seeded in September 2013 and has since flourished into a two-week celebration, The Good Life Eco Festival Waiheke, featuring 50 events from 28 September to 12 October.
The festival kicks off with the Eco Expo on Sunday 28 September at Te Huruhi Primary School Hall, where 50 organisations will be showcased, including electric cars, E-Bikes, Greenpeace, alternative energy, waterless composting toilets, septic tank care and energy efficiency experts.
A plant sale and swap, artisan food and a children’s eco-zone will all be outside the hall area. The first 100 people to arrive will receive their very own BYO Bag hand sewn goodie bag, filled with eco-related treats including gifts from the Eco Store, Organic NZ and Kings Seeds as well as going into the draw to win a gift basket of Waiheke goodies. Entry is by koha and the event runs from10am to 4pm.
Kath O’Sullivan – a story of love that outlasts war
It’s wartime Britain. Lives are being thrown up in the air; children separated from their families and evacuated to the country; men off to war; young women breaking out of their British class straightjackets and leaving ‘service’ to join the army; ‘foreigners’ exiled across the world.
Amidst the turmoil, a young couple meet, fall in love – and are forcibly separated by circumstances. She’s British; he’s German.
The future isn’t particularly promising but author, 87-year-old Kath O’Sullivan, isn’t into unhappy endings. Her novel, A Tisket, A Tasket (the title borrowed from an old nursery rhyme), ends with a new start for the couple in New Zealand.
She chose Palmerston North – but it could just as easily have been on Waiheke Island which has been Yorkshire-born Kath’s permanent home for close to a quarter century.
After reading her novel, I almost expected to meet both her – and the older version of her character’s German lover Willy – when I knocked at the door of her cottage in Karaka Road.
After all, it was written in retrospect, based in her home country of Yorkshire and it did feel a tad autobiographical.
Outsider art around the island
Matthew Muir’s weekly arts diary
Street art is generally seen as any kind of informal artwork created outdoors, often in a public location and in many cases without any official sanction.
As such, it tends to be associated with urban environments, created as a response to life in an industrialised region or large city. The modern era of street art has its origins in the 1960s, emerging in cities such as New York, and it matured throughout the 1970s and ‘80s to become a major phenomenon that has gradually spread to urban areas around the globe.
The techniques employed by street artists are varied, and include the use of stickers, spray paint - either freehand or with stencils, chalk, marker pens, brushed paint and even tiling and knitted wool.
Apart from some notable exceptions, street art is normally encountered outside of the conventional art gallery context. It is also usually intended to be impermanent, often being obliterated by city officials or local councils as soon as possible.
Frequently seen by authorities as a form of vandalism, street art can be informal and humorous in subject, but has also often been used to present controversial political and social messages directly to the viewing public.
Matthew’s long hike for health and peace of mind
When real estate agent Matthew Smith was 14, he wanted to ride a bike from Auckland to Queenstown. Back then, he wasn’t allowed; now at 41, he is instead walking the 1600km.
More than a week in, from the shores of “beautiful” Lake Karapiro, he has already battled sore feet and blisters, samba’d with a blues-harp playing Maori on a Hamilton roadside, experienced a bunch of different accommodation options, from dingy motel to quaint cottage – and had to adjust his original journey estimate of up to six weeks.