Archive for November 2011

crazy mike's bargain emporium

November 28, 2011

the mighty yellow teapot of happiness: yours for a dollar In 1999, a couple of weeks after arriving in Welly I found myself making the first of what would turn out to be, around eleventy hundred treks from Brooklyn to Ngarunga Gorge. In the back of an industrial estate was the Unisys Helpdesk and the beginnings of my […]


November 24, 2011

For being at this end of four billion years of evolutionary success; for the bittersweet gift of witnessing the sunset of a good, long life; for my lovely purple winter coat and hand-knitted wrist warmers; for the lady-bugs who visit me still even though they should have flown south or hibernated by now (I never […]

scenes from the weekend

November 21, 2011

In which we put the world to rights, just after the fourth bottle at 2am on Saturday morning; got to potter around Lyme Regis and breath in sea air for the first time in months (chakras: balanced); met someone who worked with John Peel and spent time in the 90s helping out Nicaragua freedom-fighters; picked […]


November 12, 2011

Simone de Beauvoir, Margaret Atwood, Madeline Albright, Christopher Hitchens, Henry Rollins, Billy Bragg, Janet Frame, Martin Amis, and Etta James would all be attendance at my dream dinner party. And despite the vagaries of time and geography, I have been lucky enough to spend time in the same room as a few of my heroes: […]


November 06, 2011

I always thought it odd when we sung Blake’s hymn at school: ‘green and pleasant’ was not my impression of England. Ensconced in New Zealand in the 1980s (and heavily influenced by the large chip of working-class self-righteousness, that sat firmly across my father’s northern shoulders), England seemed rather a frightening place, made mostly of […]