In New Zealand, there is an ongoing debate as to the boundaries of each season. We have a meteorological calendar which says that Spring begins on September 1, and an Astronomical calendar which has it beginning at the vernal equinox (about Sept 23) . Either way, I have been seeing daffodils and lambs for at least a month already.
Despite the arrival or approach of Spring, the weather has been extremely changeable so whenever there is stillness I am out and about. Sometimes, when the air is still, it is possible to get a pleasant image from the midst of an industrial zone. This image is of the Waiwhetu Stream as it passes through Seaview among all the light industry.
Then it turned rough again, so I played with my lightbox and some lavender that Mary grows in a pot at the back door.
I have an interest in architectural photography and chose to wander the CBD. I have always liked the old Dominion Farmers building on Featherston street. These days, only the facade remains as there is a modern building inside the shell. I am glad they retained the facade.
On Lambton Quay there is a mix of old and new. The Hallensteins building on the left was once home to Whitcoulls, the bookseller, but they vacated due to earthquake risk. I presume remedial work was carried out before Hallensteins moved in. To the right is one of Wellington’s new double-decker buses made by Xiamen Fengtai Bus and Coach International. The introduction of the new fleet with new routes and new timetables has been a total circus and has met with almost universal condemnation for its perceived ineptitude. A major redesign is promised.
I was walking along Cable Street and glanced into the door of Mac’s Brewbar, a popular waterfront hostelry. The door was closed but the glass panels gave an interesting view through the opposite window of the Hikitia. According to Wikipedia, she is thought to be the only working steam-powered floating crane of her type left in the world. She sailed under her own steam from Scotland to Wellington in 1926. That is seamanship.
While we are on a maritime kick, here is a phosphor-bronze propeller. It is one of the two removed from the Leander class frigate, HMNZS Wellington before her hull was scuttled as a dive site off the South coast of the city. They were gifted to the city by Rotary as art works if I recall correctly. Her other propeller is on the Esplanade in Houghton Bay not far from the wreck. Imagine how fast they had to spin to get the 2,500 tonne ship up to 50 km/h
Back on the architectural kick, this image was made from Dixon St, looking west to Thorndon and Victoria University of Wellington. The Rankine Brown Building is home to the university’s library. The semi-circular protuberance is a stairwell which I trudged up far more times than I could count in my years there.
Even comparative calm is good. I took myself up to the Kapiti coast and went down to the rocky beach at Pukerua Bay. It used to be home to many ramshackle cottages. These are steadily giving way to some rather up-market seaside homes. Lovely as the place is, it is not where I would wish to live in the event of a serious tsunami.
Yesterday, before the weather turned ugly, I deemed it worth a trip over the hill to Tora on the Wairarapa coast. On the way I stopped at Lake Wairarapa and just loved its perfect stillness.
From there it is approximately 70 km over winding and mostly gravel roads to the coast. Just where the road turns North to Te Awaiti there are some rock formations off the coast that fascinate me. They put me in mind of what I am told is the impasto style of painting, wherein the artist lays the paint on the canvas thickly with knife or brush (think of Van Gogh) .
That’s it until Spring