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  • Helen English Artist

Days out of the box...

For the first time since I started this blog, I had a weekend off! I am of the opinion that occasionally your brain needs a break from its usual pattern and my computer also had a rest from the usual clatter of my typing. However, I have had thoughts waiting to spill themselves onto paper during this time because of a trip to Wellington.


The family were down there for my older step-daughter’s graduation. That was wonderful in itself and a lovely time to catch up with her life in the city and to catch up properly with the others in our group of four who went to celebrate with her. We didn’t stop moving for 48 hours. We stopped for fuel and chatter in a few of the cafes and the restaurants, who served us delicious food, and were surprisingly reasonable, and we walked everywhere. It was amazing to stay right in the centre of town and have everything on your doorstep, and yet, strangely, this added to how far we went. It took me back to my life 20 odd years ago.


I started my New Zealand life in the Wellington region, and I used to cycle into the city on my days off to explore the streets and drink large cups of coffee. It was an amazing experience for someone who had never lived near the sea or near a city which has, in my opinion, such aesthetic beauty.



On ths trip, we woke up early each day and went in search of the sunrise. The first time we almost missed it because we took so many photos. There is art almost everywhere. Murals on the walls, sculptures in the streets and along the harbour front. And when I say sculptures in the streets, I don’t just mean sculptures placed upright in the ground. There are features like a geometric fountain running parallel between two roads and an area with boardwalk and slabs interspersed with reeds blowing in the wind. A skate park, with murals along the sides, which is sectioned into different areas built innovatively to house all levels of skating experience, from those who come to watch or try shaky new moves out through to the daredevil experts. The art is really built in, and painted on, the fabric of the city. Including the ground. In Cuba Street, I was excited to find a rainbow crossing. That told me a lot about the positive attitude right down to the planning in the place. My heart also sang though when I spotted the bucket fountain in Cuba Mall. Installed in 1969, ode to the impending 70s and it is still there. Thank you Wellington, from the bottom of my heart.


I love Rotorua and chose to move here but Wellington is the added depth for me, which makes New Zealand a glorious place to be.

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