Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Day In the Life

Listening to: So-Peter Gabriel

I have been busy lately, more so than usual, so haven't been blogging or facebooking as much.


-I am sick of watching the sunset from work, so I am officially job hunting again. Not enjoying the 'new' job anymore and want to do something else. Suggestions and offers welcome....

-None of my netball teams have won games for ages it seems. Close games, just not winning ones.

-I am too busy to ride to work at the moment. I like riding to work.

-I am buying the new Shihad album tomorrow (well actually today since it is after midnight).

-I am still looking for a Homegrown ticket.

-I am a lot more interested in holding babies than I ever used to be.

-Our new houseguests are working out well, and very pleasant company.

-Damn if it doesn't feel like winter all of a sudden.

Right then, on to the thing I was going to post about.

I should have posted this about a month ago, but I have been busy.

March 18 2008 marked the 25th anniversary of A Day in the life of New Zealand.

The 'day in the life' concept was essentially send a bunch of photographers to various points around the country, and have them shoot anything that took their fancy, all on the same day.

The results were collated, edited, and published in a book later that year:
1983 doesn't seem that long ago, but twenty five years before 1983 it was 1958, which puts the gap into perspective. I've always liked big style picture books, but this one has always been the king, because it offered a perspective of my own country, and I have always been interested in that. My aunt and uncle had a copy, and I leafed through it countless times. All of the images are now familiar.

Its an interesting book, because it is a snapshot of a time I can remember, with some things that are still familiar, but others that are long gone. I wonder what happened to the people in the photos, if being in the book was significant to them. Some are undoubtedly now dead, children have become adults. I tried googling the names of the newborns featured, but didn't find much.

18 March 1983 was a Friday, so on the day these pictures were taken I was at school at St Michaels Catholic Primary in Taita. We had only moved to Lower Hutt four months previously, so I was a few weeks into a new school. Fortuitously we were doing a class project on aviation, which no doubt helped the settling in process.

I had a look and tried to pick out a few favourites. This one on Mt Aspiring has always stood out.
And this dustie in Newtown leaping from his truck. I vaguely remember the tills on the back of the rubbish trucks, but can't remember why they were there. The dusties are long gone now, replaced by kerbside collection. I love all the incidental details; the guy fixing the window, the 'Big Red' bus visible on the right, the cars. I wonder who 'Don Cortina' was.
At the time I gravitated to the images of kids my age, or close to it.
I remember this mural quite well. I think it survived the Pigeon Park/Te Aro Park transition, but it is gone now. The XA Falcon in the background would not have been a new car even then. It would be a classic now.

The effort was repeated in 2000 for the dawn of the millennium, but it is an inferior work, and doesn't cover as much ground.
I picked up a copy of the original at a book fair last year, and still take the time to lovingly peruse it every now and then.

1 comment:

d3vo said...

Nice photos bro!