Walk down memory lane

book coverWhen I first moved to Christchurch, one of the first thing I did was take a red bus to the square. I was told that I should look up and check to see where the Port Hills were, then I wouldn’t get lost. I looked up and saw what looked like a crown. It turned out to be the top of The Press office. There were cinemas and pubs around the edge of the square, but ChristChurch Cathedral dominated the space. The Cathedral was an oasis and I think I admired every statue and stained glass window.

Over the years I have visited the Square and the Cathedral many times. I was there in Februrary 2011. The Festival of Flowers was in full swing and I was taking photos of the floral exhibits.

In December last year, I took a walk to Cathedral Square. I couldn’t get over how different was. It was quiet, even though the walkway was crowded. The trees towered over the ruins of the Cathedral and The Press building was gone. Shops, pubs, cafes and banks, all empty, all ruined and many  to go. As we stared at the Cathedral, we were pleased that no one died there, but a few tears were shed over our Square.

Last night, Gerry Brownlee announced that the walkway will open for two weekends starting this weekend. It will give us another chance to see the square and the Cathedral. Although some buildings are in ruins and will go, I am very glad to have had the chance to enjoy them.

Jackson Brodie: the shirtless detective

Alright, you lot:  hands up who missed Wednesday night’s screening of Kate Atkinson’s Case Histories?

Really?  Sorry to hear that – you missed a treat. Even without the above-referenced (and much-mentioned-in-reviews) shirtlessness, it was a GREAT adaptation of the first of the Jackson Brodie series. I’ve read the books, so was pretty prepared for the story to be quite full in terms of characters and plots, but my family hadn’t read any, and still coped remarkably well with the large number of missing/murdered/misunderstood girls and young women in Brodie’s life.

I thought the script and casting and characterisation were all pretty much spot on, and there were never any moments where I thought: Hang on, THAT’s not what happened in the book …  And I will definitely be tuning in next week for book number two: One Good Turn.

So that’s MY 5 minute lightning-fast take on Case Histories, the TV series – what’s yours?

The Women’s Art Environment: Picturing Canterbury

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The Women’s Art Environment, CSA Gallery, Christchurch : women in the tepee space. [1977]
In 1977 the Women’s Artists Group organized the Women’s Art Environment at the Canterbury Society of Arts. The artists exhibiting included Joanna Paul and Allie Eagle. “The event was conceived as an opportunity for women to come together in one place to discover their particular identity as women, in a situation where their expression would be uninhibited by men. The exhibition was opened exclusively to women for the first five days … The objects which remained on display after this were evidence of the deeply felt need of the participants to search for the sources of their identities as women ” — The Press, 11 June 1977, p. 22