Thursday, December 31, 2009

Richmond Rd

I haven't blogged for a few weeks so I'm having a bit of a retrospective. This is a December post in January!! I walk a lot with Bunny, my dog, and can get a bit bored with the local scenery so we ventured into Ponsonby. It was so nice in the crazy build up to Christmas, to take some time out to enjoy new sights and sounds and to wander on a beautiful day. As Bunny and I walked together, I had such a feeling of peace and genuine happiness.... a feeling of well being, that all is good with the world! Here are some of the things that caught my eye as we meandered down Richmond Rd.

Love the slightly derelict Tongan church.

Still majestic in a crumbling, faded kind of way.

Love this orange Fiat.... such an awesome colour and model!!

Love Flotsam and Jetsam..... full of eclectic, vintage finds.

Love Bunny.... who was completely exhausted but happy with our walk!

Friday, December 18, 2009

christmas lights

Last Sunday Beth and I went to Ponsonby Rd to check out the Telecom Christmas tree. It has been advertised with much hype, so I was a little sceptical about how amazing it would be. As we walked up to it I was struck by the variety of people there. Couples sitting on bean bags, eating dinner , drinking wine and enjoying the tree from the outside.... families with young kids running round excitedly.... people queueing up at the old school red telephone boxes to place gift requests with Santa.... adults, young people, children, babies, dogs.... lying on bean bags under the tree.

Beth and I took our places, lying on the beanbags, looking up into the tree. That's when it really came alive! The lights change colours, twinkling, moving.... then the star unfolds, it's points of light creating a starry halo at the top of the tree. It really is magical. We spent a lot of time lying back, taking photos and enjoying the experience. At one point the lights all came on in full and there was an audible "wow" from the crowd.

Before we left I joined the queue and rang Santa. I put in a quick request for world peace, a new man and a fine Christmas Day. I'll keep you posted on how that all pans out!

Then Mikey and Bunny joined us and we headed off down Franklin Rd. So many people - looking, talking, laughing.... There was such a great feeling of goodwill. It seems Christmas lights bring out the best in everybody! Bunny loved the crowds. She really is a "people" dog.

The lights were amazing. People have gone all out to create a spectacular light show in their own front yards. So colourful, so over the top! My favourites were the quiet, understated creamy clusters of light flowers and the colourful paper lanterns hanging in the verandas of a beautiful two storey villa. I like the less is more/make a simple but beautiful statement approach to Christmas lighting.

What a lovely night. It left us with a warm glow, feeling that all is good with the world. Thanks Telecom and Franklin Rd!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

where the wild things are

This is me in my Max suit. As you can see I'm having a lot of fun! I've always loved the book Where the Wild Things Are. I love Max! What kid hasn't been a wild thing at one time or another? Pushing the boundaries, having an adult say enough and go to your room. After a while in there, just wanting to be loved even if you are a wild thing. Then finding that your Mum is there, still loving you despite your wild thing tendencies!!

Where the Wild Things Are won the prestigious Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished picture book of the year in 1964. Yes, over forty years ago! Talk to a group of adults about children's books they loved growing up and so many will say Where the Wild Things Are. And it is still beloved by children today! I've read it quite a few times to kids in my Max suit. They love it! After the reading we have a wild rumpus and they all roar their terrible roars and gnash their terrible teeth and roll their terrible eyes and show their terrible claws..... What fun!

Last Friday I went to see the movie. In our house we have followed the making of it quite closely and have eagerly anticipated it's arrival in NZ. It's been on in the States for ages. I really wanted to love it! As an objective movie watcher, I did like it bit felt it dragged a little in the middle. As a Where the Wild Things Are fan there were lots of things about it that I loved. I loved how the wild things were portrayed. They were so believable. Excellent puppet mastery from the Jim Henson crew. They were so childlike with their idocyncracies and whineyness, just saying everything and anything that comes into their heads. They were so happy to smash others in the head with giant mud clods but cried out when they were hit that it wasn't fair, that hurt, they weren't ready and that they 're not going to play anymore. Big kids! They had regular kid names like Carol, KW, Judith......

I loved Carol. So appropriately voiced by James Gandolfini. So conflicted, "cutting off his nose to spite his face" as my Mum would say. Loving Max so much but hitting out in that irrational, self destructive, childlike way. I cried when Max left the wild things, holding my breath and hoping that Carol made it in time to say goodbye and show Max how much he loved him. I loved it how KW whispered the line,"Oh please don't go - I'll eat you up - I love you so!" to Max with such tenderness. I love the inspired Karen O soundtrack. "All is love" gives me tingles!

So I did love it because it engaged me. I became childlike in my expectations and enjoyment of the movie. Maurice Sendak, the author and illustrator of the book, liked the movie. He said that it captured the heart of the book. It did! Max summed it up when he said "I wish you guys had a Mum". The unconditional love of your Mum, regardless of your behaviour, is an overriding theme in the book. Where the Wild Things Are..... Go see it. Let down your adult facade, embrace your inner wild thing and enjoy!!


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