A couple of weeks ago my siblings and I met to remember our Mum and Dad who had both died in the month of May Mum on the 22nd May 5 Years ago and Dad on the 27th May 35 years ago.
My dear dad Guy Walker served his country in the second world war, and often talked of his fun times in Cairo and Italy. He and his friends looked on joining up as a great adventure and this photo of him in his uniform before he left shows some of that.
I don’t think any of us kids realized that he rarely spoke of the bad times and as he was in Egypt and at Cassino in Italy there must of been lots of them. He was a fun Dad liked to get down and play with us kids, had a good sense of humour and liked a social life. He always gardened vegetables and as I was a Daddy’s girl I used to love helping in the garden or with the other jobs he did.We girls had the most years with him as the my brothers were only 13 and 10 when he died very young aged 59 , and left my mum with three grown up daughters and two boys still at home.
My Mum and Dad met after the second world war, she was boarding next door to his family with an aunt. My father was dared by his brothers to go over in his pajamas and dressing gown and say he had heard she needed a man. It was a great joke and he was invited in and sat talking with her and her uncle and aunt of course. here is a picture of them on their first date and then their wedding day the 26 February 1949
It was great to be together as a family and chat about old times and look through old snaps , most of them black and white but moving into colour as the years passed. My Mum lived until she was 86 and never remarried, she often spoke of Dad and the good and not so good times they shared together.
Memories and old photos go together and I do worry that this will be lost in this digital age as so many photos are taken but rarely printed or shared except on social media. Ah well that’s the future What will be will be./ Que sera sera.
Back in February I set off with a cousin on a road trip from Taranaki up to the Waikato, across to the Bay of Plenty, over to Gisborne down to Napier and then home. We had an amazing time. Our first goal was to visit Hobbiton which is the Film set from Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. What an amazing place it was totally worth the entry price and exceeded my expectations. This set was rebuild for the Hobbit movies and this time the Farm owners requested that the Set be built of permanent materials in order for it to become a tourist destination. He worked with Sir Peter Jackson and his studio and it has been a triumph, also an economic success story for the Farm, Matamata and the surrounding area. It employs a large number of locals and draws tourists from around the world. Every detail is carefully crafted the clothes line for example came up to my knees and the clothes were all in proportion.It was a grey drizzly day but as you can see we still got good photos.
From Hobbiton we drove to Tauranga and the following morning we headed over to visit family in Gisborne on the east coast of the North Island. This small city prides itself on being the first city to see the sun. Captain James Cook sailed into the bay in 1769 and as Cook was unable to gain many of the provisions he and his crew needed at the bay he gave it the name Poverty Bay. Now Poverty Bay is one of the more fertile areas of New Zealand and famous for its Chardonnay, fruit, vegetables and avocados, and abundant sunshine although we actually brought the rain from Taranaki with us. We had one fine day travelling over and then it rained. They needed it as it had been very dry but we wanted sun 😦 so not many photos.
After a great time with Family and touring wineries we headed of in the rain to Napier to meet up with my Sisters and Brother in Law for the Napier Art Deco festival. More on that in the next post.
Today I want to wish all my followers Seasons greetings for this festive time. I know that we all have different ways of celebrating and also different faiths but this is the time of the year for me to celebrate Christmas. Being a December baby I have always loved Christmas time, the carols, decorating the house and bringing in the Christmas tree or even putting up the fake one; the family traditions and then joy on peoples faces as they gather with their families and friends.
This year is a little different its been harder somehow to get into the spirit of the season. My decorations are more low key as I have no family visiting this year, I am going to my sister’s for Christmas Lunch then back to my Brother’s for the evening meal.
There have also been so many momentous happenings here in New Zealand with another major earthquake shaking us badly and creating chaos and recently our Prime Minister suddenly resigning,. Internationally Donald Trump in America winning the Presidential race, Brexit in Britain and so many injustices around the world in war zones and terrorism in cities like Paris and just last night Berlin. just to name a few.Each year we ask for Peace but it never happens.
I guess that the best we can do in our small corner of the world is to share love and happiness with those close to us and in our community too. As a country far away from the unrest of the world we are known to be generous and supportive of those in need all over the world as well as in our own backyard. We must all lead by example and show the way so I wish you all
Joy, Peace and Happiness this Christmas and for the coming Year.
Invercargill road trip After a quiet day recovering form our trip to Milford Sound we set of on a round trip to Invercargill capital of the South We stopped on the way to view an old suspension bridge at Clifton then went to visit the Southland Museum and the Bill Richardson Transport World Museum . Both were very good and great to do on a wet miserable day. We saw Tuatara at the Southland Museum and a Burt Munro exhibit then headed to the World transport Museum. This was a great place not only did it have lots of Fords but they also had outstanding wearable art costumes on display and we spent a lot of time there. Lunch in the city and a wee bit of retail therapy before we headed back to Te Anau.
Christmas day is over once again and most of us are either breathing a sign of relief, enjoying our families being home for the holidays or taking part in the madness of the Boxing day sales. It is a beautiful summers day here in Hawera and my neighbours are out mowing lawns probably prior to going away on holiday. I hosted Christmas Lunch for my siblings this year and it was great to have them and their families gather around my table celebrating Christmas and catching up with each other.
I hope that for most of you today is a day of relaxation I can not think of anything worse than to go out shopping for “bargains” in crowded shopping malls or town centres. That is not what Christmas is about. I am not overly religious but over the past few years have come to the realisation that we can live life much more simply and in a less stressful way if we do not buy into all the hype.
When I was a child our family did not have a lot of money so we used to make our presents for each other and it was so good for us to be creative and also know that the gift you received had been made especially for you. I remember one year using my pocket money to buy little calendars which I then attached to pictures I had made and stuck on cardboard. I received a couple of those types of gifts this year and it was lovely.
Of course I still enjoy getting all of my presents regardless as I know my family and friends pick special things for me. I am a Christmas Child at heart and always have the decorations up and send out Christmas Cards.This year I made about 40 Christmas cards and enjoyed the act of crafting them and adding embellishments and then choosing who to give each card to.
In a few days it will be another New Year and my hope is for a more peaceful year for the world, for good health, happiness and prosperity for my family and friends and all of you who read my blogs. May 2016 show that the Human Race can get their Act together and work one small step at a time to make our world a better place.