This is not my vision of Spring.
I want blue skies, lambs, cherry blossoms, ducklings and daffodils. And what have I got? Trees thrashing about in a rain-laden Southerly, cold temperatures and gloomy grey skies is what I have got!
Having visited some of Wellington’s central business areas, and also Upper Hutt recently, I wondered if it was time to re-visit Lower Hutt. There was intermittent drizzle yesterday, and somehow that reflected more or less accurately, the state of the city outside of the big Westfield Queensgate Mall. To be honest, there is little in the mall that I visit, apart from an excellent sushi outlet. On the other hand, there are fewer and fewer useful shops still in business. And nothing kills off a shopping area quicker than a surplus of empty shops.
My first shot is looking South along High Street. Apart from the empty shops there are a few food outlets, some cheap “fashion” shops, a glorified pawn broker, and some retailers of cheap plastic junk.
Queens Drive, seen here looking South from Bunny Street, seems to be faring marginally better than High Street, though there are still some rather sad down-market shops. Clearly the main street glory days are gone. Though there is little similarity with the real life Kansas City*, I can’t help feeling that malls and superstores have locked the centre of Lower Hutt into a 1960’s time warp.
Somewhat depressed I went down to the river at Petone (cue Alison Krauss sound track), and saw a juvenile Royal Spoonbill moping about in the company of a pair of black swans.
As the rain increased, I walked along the path towards the boatsheds. My mother often told me I didn’t have the sense to come in out of the rain. Anyway, movement in the bushes caught my eye, and I realised that there was a group of waxeyes (Zosterops lateralis) feeding on the spring growth. They were wet, bedraggled, but still lively in their feeding.
That will suffice for the day.
* “Everything’s up to date in Kansas City” From the stage show “Oklahoma” (Richard Rodgers / Oscar Hammerstein II