Being Pakeha…and one or two books


Books, of course have been a joy. Amy Tan Saving Fish from Drowning was a delight to read in Raro…..and while Robert Fisk’s Great War for Civilisation is my current companion and morning interest, catching up with Tim Winton’s latest (loaned out so title forgotten – Breathing?) was great. I love his writing and perceptions…he captures that world of youth and innocence really well….and the glimpses of the wonderfully dry WA landscape are…well,  memborable I guess. (Fisk is up to Israeli/Palestinian wars and the current bit I am reading talks about the ways Palestinians are so oppressed and the people so without hope that suicide bombings become an almost acceptable part of daily life. Shocking).

But one of the recent guests sent me the catalogue for Pakeha Now from the Suter Gallery in Nelson. It’s an interesting (and interestingly written) catalogue and chance for us to think about who we are. I love the way Anna Marie White’s essay mimics the (hopefully limited to but I suspect not) 19th century style of writing about Maori. Wish I’d seen the exhibition – looks like fun! And other kind guests gave me Rita Angus catalogue. Very fine and still dipping into it.

And it reminds me that a colleague and I have just written an abstract for a conference in Salzburg about memory and social networking…..let’s hope we get there…better go and look for another image. The image? Oh, it’s me taking a shot of myself with crutch and bad hips…which did give me the joy of actually having rounded hips for a month or two….


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