Sunday, 7 November 2010

Super, Island Bay & Bolton Street Memorial Park (7th November 2010)

Another gorgeous day in the coolest little capital in the world (as acclaimed by Lonely Planet)! Jono and I headed out to Island Bay for brunch at a café on The Parade called Super. Jono tells me that I say the word ‘super’ very often and when he saw the name of this café while flipping through our Entertainment Book, he said we should go check it out the ‘super’ cafe one weekend. That’s a SUPER idea! :P

Around 11am, we arrived at the empty café and wondered if the food was any good (remember the rule: lots of people = good food). “Since we are already here, might as well give it a try,” said Jono and we headed in to find ourselves a table. Interesting interior of a Kiwi bach/beach house and a small courtyard with garden round the back, the menu choices were pretty standard like in most cafes. Jono had a Super breakfast (big breakfast) while I had pancakes with banana and bacon with our flat whites, costing us around $35 less the 25% discount we got from the Entertainment Book. For a café in the suburbs, it sure has a lot of workers both front of house and in the kitchen (where they expecting a mass crowd?). More people started to turn up, mostly young couples with children and we even saw 2 local comedians. So perhaps they do get busy after all!

Around 12pm, we headed over to see Ben and Rissa and ended up chatting in the sun over tea outside their house before we piled into Jono’s car and headed for a walk in the Botanical Gardens. Ben was keen to check out the Bolton Street Memorial Park so all four of us went for a walk along the burial ground of 1,334 visible gravestones/memorials of many early pioneers and historical figures from the 19th century including Richard Seddon, NZ’s longest serving prime minister.

You can see that many of the gravestones have been lost or destroyed over time, splits and chips visible. About a third of the graves were moved due to the motorway work and reinstated, being placed as near as possible to its original location. On closer inspection, we found that many of the dead were children, reflecting the high mortality rate in the pioneer colony from diseases such as tuberculosis. One wonders if there are actual bodies underground – some of the graves were placed so close to each other! Jono and I can’t help but wonder if the dead bodies were placed underground vertically or perhaps first cremated then the ashes placed underground. There was just no way to place the bodies horizontally! Though the open space park was neatly maintained, I don’t think I would want to visit the place when dark falls. The gravestones may not have frightening gargoyles or statues but the idea of visiting a cemetery at night brings shivers up my spine…

The boys were having a fun time snapping away on their respective cameras. “These two can behave like little boys when together,” I said to Rissa and she nodded in agreement as we both laughed. Rather endearing watching the 2 big boys enjoying their time together and seeing hints of playful and mischievous teenagers in them hehe…We spent the rest of the afternoon chilling out in the sun on the lawns of the Lady Norwood Rose Garden watching life pass us by – parents running after their kids, an old lady feeding the rather domesticated pigeons and ducks by the fountain, couples lying together on the grass – a very relaxed and chilled out day for all. Photos taken by Jono this afternoon here.


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