A longish weekend

First, there was high tea at the high table in the Hippopotamus Room for the BNZ Literary Awards. (This article highlights Chiao Lin, the young writer I chose as winner of her section. Too typically, she is under-mentioned elsewhere.)

From Wellington, Kate and I hit the road. Pretty much the first thing I did was throw my whole, hot cup of coffee over the car floor. (Sorry, Kate!)

Nevertheless, Kate shared hers.

Craig drove us up the narrow Wanganui River road. The roadsides were studded with goats and pigs. We saw no one on the hour-and-a-half- trip in to Hiruharama — Jerusalem.

We were on the lookout for James K’s grave. Someone said he was buried on the riverbank somewhere. Kate got a bit close to the riverbank. We decided not to carry on over the old swing bridge with missing teeth. (Thanks for a lovely time, Kate!)

Trouser legs in case you can’t tell.

Next day I tried to fly home and made it as far as Christchurch. The day after, I sat in the falling dark and stared at the little plane ready to fly me south.

I’m drawing from memory, okay? I know there are bits missing. But there was definitely something holding the tail together, and other bits tying the plane to earth.

My prayer for a cancellation was answered.

I flew home 24 hours later. Hardly a bump.

Today I was remembering Can Serrat as I blogged there about the link with Rosa Mira Books.

Garden statuary, Can Serrat, May 2005.