The Changing Seasons, April 2021

“The whole world before you, and a horizon that’s always changing.” — Kenneth Grahame. Image: Su Leslie 2021

It’s a strange contradiction that while April has been my most sociable and outward-looking month in a long time, I’m remembering these thirty days mainly as a time of introspection.

The month began with a trip to the theatre. Dreading the CBD’s nightmare roadworks, T and I caught the ferry from Devonport, had a meal, strolled around the waterfront and sat down to one of the most interesting productions we’ve seen in a long time.

The Haka Party Incident was visually stunning verbatim theatre (1) that tells of a few moments in history which changed race relations in Aotearoa New Zealand.

In 1979, after enduring several decades of Auckland University Engineering students staging a highly offensive mock “haka” as a capping stunt, a group of young Maori activists confronted the engineers during a rehearsal. Punches were thrown, arrests were made, and institutional racism was laid bare.

But the engineers never again performed their “haka”.

T and I are both graduates of Auckland University (T of its Engineering School) and though the haka party incident was before our time, it is part of our collective history. To see events that we understood from the perspective of Pakeha teenagers, re-told 40-odd years later was a sobering and quite empowering experience.

An evening in the city. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Carved entrance to Te Wero Island, Auckland. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Really, April has been all about a road-trip to visit my father and attend a workshop on eco-printing/dye on fabric. I love solo travel, and having seven days to visit people and places I love — and learn a new skill — was absolute bliss.

I’ll write a separate post on what I learned in the workshop, but here a few shots of my efforts on the day

Laying out the plant material to be “printed”. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Bundled, “cooked” and then unrolled to reveal what’s been imprinted. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Hanging the results out to dry. Image; Su Leslie 2021

Looking back on the photos I shot while away pretty much confirms my obsession with desolate landscapes, lowering skies, quirky buildings and food.

Celeriac soup at The Kirk, Hamilton, NZ. Delicious! Image: Su Leslie 2021

Homemade preserves for sale at The Creel Lodge Cafe, Turangi, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Carrot cake and a flat white. The Black Stump Cafe, Pahiatua, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

You know you’re in the country when … Reading material at The Black Stump Cafe, Pahiatua. Image: Su Leslie 2021

“By far the greatest and most admirable form of wisdom is that needed to plan and beautify cities and human communities.” — Socrates. Seen in Whanganui, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Love the name! Probably just as well they were closed. Whanganui, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

A great Arts’ Centre, and ‘Ghost of the Huia’, sculpture by Paul Dibble. The Square, Palmerston North, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

What were they thinking? Brutalism in The Square, Palmerston North, NZ. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Tui Brewery, Pahiatua, New Zealand. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Pohuturoa; volcanic rhyolite plug. Waikato, New Zealand. Image: Su Leslie 2021

Because … why not? Replica Dutch windmill in Foxton, NZ. Opened in 2003. Image: Su Leslie 2021

It didn’t seem as run down when I stayed here in 1980. Gretna Hotel, Taihape, New Zealand. Image: Su Leslie 2021


(1) Verbatim theatre “uses pre-existing documentary material as source material for stories about real events and people, frequently without altering the text in performance.”


About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly project where bloggers around the world share their thoughts and feelings about the month just gone. We all approach this slightly differently — though generally with an emphasis on the photos we’ve taken during the month.

For many of us, looking back over these photos provides the structure and narrative of our post, so each month is different.

Others focus on documenting the changes in a particular project — such as a garden, an art or craft project, or a photographic diary of a familiar landscape.

But in the end, it is your changing season, and you should approach it however works for you.

There are no fixed rules around post length or photo number — just a request that you respect your readers’ time and engagement.

Tags and ping-backs

Tag your photos with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

Create a ping-back to this post, so that I can update it with links to all of yours.

Update

Tracy at Reflections of an Untidy Mind

Tish from Writer on the Edge

Marilyn at Serendipity, Seeking Intelligent Life on Earth

Pauline at Living in Paradise

Natalie from Little Pieces of Me

Mick at Mick’s Cogs

Suzanne from Life at No. 22

Ju-Lyn at Touring my Backyard

Brian from Bushboy’s World

Out of the Cave joins us this month

Virtual Afternoon Tea, April 2021

Image: Su Leslie 2021

Wherever you are, and whatever is happening in your world, Kia ora koutou katoa  (Greetings. Hello to you all)

I’m on the road this month; a visit with my Dad, an eco dye-making workshop, and a chance to catch up with a few friends.

It’s a trip that’s taking me through some favourite landscapes …

Mt. Ruapehu, from the Desert Road. Image: Su Leslie 2021

… and to a much-loved cafe.

Almond croissant and a flat white, Creel Lodge Cafe, Turangi. Image: Su Leslie 2021

I first stayed at the Creel Lodge in Turangi almost a decade ago, and return when I can. The lodge backs onto the Tongariro River and offers fishing gear and instruction — which I’ve yet to take them up on.

Delicious. Image: Su Leslie 2021

I do visit the on-site cafe though — even (especially) when I’m not staying in the Lodge. The coffee is consistently excellent, and the almond croissants are flaky, almond-y perfection.

Whanganui River at Aramoho, Whanganui. Image: Su Leslie 2021

It’s now late afternoon in Whanganui. Despite Met Service forecasts of heavy rain, it’s been a glorious autumnal day.

Not quite warm enough for a dip in my hosts’ pool, but perfect weather for a glass of wine, a few figs and some of my favourite Kikorangi blue cheese.

Image: Su Leslie 2021

Care to join me?

About Virtual Afternoon Tea

In these Covid-crazy times, we’re missing not only the big things, but a also the small joys and rituals of sharing a cuppa with friends. Virtual Afternoon Tea will never replace that, but it is a chance for bloggers around the world to connect over the simple sharing of food.

I post some images of my afternoon tea, along with musings on whatever’s on my mind.

You can tell me about your afternoon tea in the comments, or add a post of your own. Take a shot of your cuppa, tell us about your favourite tea-time snack — maybe even share a recipe.

Tag your post Virtual Afternoon Tea and link it to this one so others can find it.

I’ll update my post with a ping-back to everyone else’s in the same way as I do with The Changing Seasons.

#virtualteaparty2021 for anyone on Instagram who wants to post images (or video?)


Update

Aggie at Nomad is moving house, and probably really needs a few cups of tea to keep her going.

Tracy at Reflections of an Untidy Mind is enjoying her cuppa with toast and homemade fig marmalade. Pop over to enjoy the gorgeous colours of a Canberra autumn.

If you love cheese, pop over to visit Irene at My Slice of Mexico for a delicious-looking recipe for baked cheese with oregano.

Join Deb at The Widow Badass for banana oatmeal muffins and some hilarious chat on her snazzy balcony.

Ladylee Manila is enjoying a cuppa and some fresh fruit while she’s working on a jigsaw puzzle.

Once again Ju-Lyn has baked something delicious and shared the recipe. Pop over to Touring my Backyard to check out her cinnamon streusel cake.

Travel Photo, no. 10

Image: Su Leslie 2019

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and have them ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So if there is anyone in our blogging whanau who hasn’t already been shoulder-tapped and would like to join in … please do.

Travel Photo, no. 9

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and have them ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So if there is anyone in our blogging whanau who hasn’t already been shoulder-tapped and would like to join in … please do.

Travel Photo, no. 8

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and have them ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So if there is anyone in our blogging whanau who hasn’t already been shoulder-tapped and would like to join in … please do.

Travel Photo, no. 7

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and have them ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So if there is anyone in our blogging whanau who hasn’t already been shoulder-tapped and would like to join in … please do.

Travel Photo, no. 6

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So, Patti (Pilotfish) if you feel like it and have time, I’m inviting you today.

Travel Photo, no. 5

Brian at Bushboy’s World invited me to join him and other bloggers posting a travel photo a day for ten days.

The deal is I also invite someone else each day to join in, and ping-back to my post.

I know how busy many of your blog schedules are, so I am always a bit loathe to nominate people.

But … many of you have travelled much more than me and have wonderful archives to dip in to …and I do really enjoy seeing the world through your eyes.

So, Anabel (The Glasgow Gallivanter), if you feel like it and have time, I’m inviting you today.

And since this week’s One Word Sunday is History — I’m sharing the image to Debbie’s challenge too.