January 19, 2005

Beyond the Yellow Brick Road

My route to work takes me down Taranaki St past Arthur St. A few days ago I noticed fences have been put up, like the ones along Willis St, in fact like the ones all along the route of the forthcoming bypass. It upsets me. Apart from that it demonstrates the incredible short-sightedness of the Wellington City Council, there’s also issues like this, which I see as being related, as raised by the Saturnyne recently. Not to mention that it will destroy a significant piece of Old Wellington. I am especially down on concrete overtaking memories - refer 329 Wicksteed St, Wanganui.

Bypass aside, the simple truth is that my thirst for living history can't be quenched on these shores. While I accept there is much to be learned from its short history, NZ is just too young for me. I long for the Old World.

The lasting impression created by the incredible sense of history and civilisation stretching out behind me in Copenhagen served to ignite my fascination in and admiration for antiquity, already awoken by an interest in the classics. Nowadays I content myself through other people's images and by immersing myself in literature such as Tolstoy's War and Peace. (Yes, Saturnyne, I've started it, I'm about halfway through volume 1 and I'm really enjoying it!)

My sister recently got UK citizenship. I had thought that I couldn't live in London for the requisite 5-6 years it would take for me to get the same but given the rights of residence it would grant me for the entire EU I'm reconsidering. I mean there must be some other places in England that aren't as grey and dirty as London. And since I'll obviously have a fabulously high-paying job, the trade-off might work out just about in my favour... Is it premature to start brushing up the ol' Italian skills? Me piace parlare italiano, ma non lo so bene... L'imparando!! Or my Danish... jeg vil gerne have et øl... and that peculiar phrase which I can't forget - jeg har glemt min paraply!

In other news, I'll post the answers to my lyrics quiz next week. There's still time! Tomorrow I’m off to Auckland for the Big Day Out. Stand by for tales of crowds, heat and musical revelation.


Blogger SingleFin said...

I'll swap you my uk citizenship for your nz one...

1:55 PM  
Blogger Peter said...

Hey Jessie, have a great time at the BDO. Check the Blues Explosion for me will ya? Kid Koala might be worth a lookee too.

11:04 PM  
Blogger The Saturnyne said...

Swap nationality? Now there's a good idea. We could do part trades and stuff.

And thanks for the linky. I always do smug Muttley impersonations when i see me name in lights.

Enjoy the Big Day Out thing.

And also commiserations for th bypass. They never, never work. Except to increase traffic. Gawd, ya should see the one's over here. London's especially a nightmare.


1:08 AM  
Blogger Barry said...

The thing I don't get about the bypass, and I have to say I didn't know this until recently, is that when it is implemented, it will shave, at best, 90 seconds off a peak time trip. 90 seconds! If there were going to be dramatic countervailing benefits to lots of people, then maybe some sort of Benthamite argument could be argued to justify it, but it seems that lots of people lose and no-one wins.

As for history, its funny, I went round the UK and bits of Europe and saw all these old buildings we learn about and see on TV and was left without much of a reaction (I even managed to spend two years in London without seeing the Tower). The most historically impressed I have ever been was in India, and not by the Pink Palace or the Taj Mahal or anythinig like that. Nope, it is when I quite randomly found myself at this several hundred year old collection of sun- and star-sighting equipment that I was most impressed. Wondering how I react when I get to Carthage next summer.

9:01 AM  
Blogger Jessie said...

Carthage huh! I think that was where part of the Aeneid was set? Sounds great.

The most historically impressed... I wonder? There were some ancient stones with runes carved into them in a place in Denmark called Jelling, they were pretty cool. Mostly it was just a feeling - sort of a sense of all the feet that had walked those streets before me... etc.

7:58 PM  

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