Saturday, 10 September 2011


Over the last two weeks I have seen kaka parrots on three occasions. In the city of Wellington. The first sighting was of a solo bird flying overhead in the suburbs. Such a funny shaped bird, the parrot. And today, in the Botanical Gardens, a group of four kakas were, in all appearances, playing with a group of four or more tuis in a flowering kowhai tree. Can the Zealandia sanctuary be thanked for this? I felt a little wistful seeing this tree on public grounds practically teaming with native birds, fooling about in a type of short lived harmony. Was this what New Zealand wildlife was like before the native species become depopulated. What would it have been like if Huia and Moa had been added to the event? Last weekend, at a family event, my father gave me a book by Alan Mulgan. It’s basically a running together of the various settlement histories (both Maori and British) in the Wellington region, more of an overview than an academic study. None the less, it’s still fairly un-biased, I think. I’ll have to confirmed that though, since, when I was talking to someone about it, and used the word “campaign” to describe Te Rauparaha’s move down the west coast, they laughed at the word. (This book, by the way, is one of those rare off hand “oh he might like this” gifts that is actually precious and interesting. Thanks dad. Yeah :) ) Combining my progress so far with this book, the unruly waka taua of the RWC opening navigating the bottomless green of the Auckland harbour, and the native bird invasion, has got me peering “down the foggy ruins of time” and wondering what they were all up to back then?
The beginnings of this city now look so random, rushed and uncertain. It seems like Wakefield sailed up and said yeah that looks good. Why not Nelson? More sun, more flat land? Hopefully the rest of the book will shed some light. I’ll get back to you. Maybe.

Gills Sans much?

Te Aro Flat and Mt Cook, about 1840


  1. I'm reading this post back to myself and some of it really doesn't make sense. I hope you're not annoyed. I'll do better next time.

  2. I mean, how is the title relevant?