Early Starts

Early Starts

In 1950s New Zea­l­and it was unusu­al for moth­ers with pre-school chil­dren to be in paid work. My moth­er was an excep­tion, sup­ple­ment­ing the fam­ily income by work­ing night shifts as a nurse and, dur­ing the day, look­ing after me, the young­est, while my broth­er and sis­ter were at school. One of my earli­est memories […]

Man Alone

There is a long his­tory of solo shows in this coun­try. From the early icon­ic works of Bruce Mason — shows he would per­form him­self up and down the coun­try, like End of the Golden Weath­er — through to Indi­an Ink, a com­pany at times not defined by how uni­ver­sally people love their solo shows […]

Capital Questions with Gale Walker

Capital Questions with Gale Walker

Just Teas­ing has been an insti­tu­tion for many Wel­ling­to­ni­ans for the last 20 years. Gale has been there for all of the salon’s moves, from Cuba Street to Egmont Street and, most recently, to upper Wil­lis Street. Gale and her team are very excited to be in their latest loc­a­tion, and to be part of […]

Whether the weather

Whether the weather

As I get older I feel more of a need to under­stand the work­ings of the world around me. Not that it’s a burn­ing yearn­ing, more like a passing interest. Herein I try to find the answers to the ques­tions that pass fleet­ingly across my cereb­ral cor­tex. Not the big ques­tions, like, “What’s for lunch?” […]

Bean Addicted

Bean Addicted

It took anoth­er city to expose my addic­tion. It wasn’t because Christ­ch­urch is on the decaf. It’s because Christ­ch­urch had an earth­quake. It was the day after the shake, 9 in the morn­ing. The city was in ruins. People were queuing for drink­ing water. I was on a mis­sion to find caf­feine. I’d been searching […]

The Other Election

The Other Election

I strongly sug­gest you look up Fiji and its coups in order to under­stand fully the import­ance of this elec­tion. My fam­ily has lived in Fiji since 1996. Dur­ing the 2000 ‘Speight Coup’ the mil­it­ary took over my Dad’s house as its base of oper­a­tions, which led to him unex­pec­tedly show­ing up at my place […]

Sharp suits, 1960

Sharp suits, 1960

 It is always good to cel­eb­rate a suc­cess­ful Wel­ling­ton busi­ness. Vance Vivi­an, Wellington’s very own top-of-the-range spe­cialty men’s cloth­ing store, has just turned 90. The com­pany is still going strong, set­ting the stand­ards for sharp suits and oth­er fine male fash­ion. The firm was begun by George Vance and Har­old Vivi­an in 1924. Vivi­an was […]

School holidays — kid-friendly Wellington: Porirua-Mana

School holidays — kid-friendly Wellington: Porirua-Mana

My sev­en-year-old son has decided to be a police officer. “That’s gonna hap­pen,” he tells me as we exit Porirua’s Police Museum in an orderly fash­ion and get into my grey Mazda Cra­pol­la, belt­ing ourselves in and then driv­ing away in a south­erly dir­ec­tion without break­ing the speed lim­it. “Def­in­itely.” That’s the effect the small […]

Health: The cuts that don’t heal

Health: The cuts that don’t heal

When Debbie Ley­land goes to see her GP in New­town, it can be a stress­ful busi­ness, and she doesn’t always feel able to pick up her pre­scrip­tion straight away. So she gets the GP to fax it to the phar­macy. For that, they charge her $5. Then, when she goes to pick up the prescription, […]

Health: Though times outside the mainstream

Health: Though times outside the mainstream

For main­stream GPs, things must be going really, really well,” says Sally Nich­oll, the gen­er­al man­ager of the Hutt Uni­on and Com­munity Health Ser­vice. The gov­ern­ment is provid­ing more and more uni­ver­sal fund­ing, espe­cially for chil­dren. But health ser­vices such as hers, which work with the most deprived pop­u­la­tions — “we become a safety net […]

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