Friday, September 21, 2012

Ask Trees: Part I

Hello World, you'll remember a while back I had an Ask Trees post, I figure its time I answered some of those questions.

The first couple of questions are from Alicia, by blog buddy and penfriend:

what would you do if you were sitting quietly in your living room one night while rich was asleep and it felt like there was something crawling on your face. you think it's just your hair, but then when you go to brush it away you realize that it's actually a horrible CENTIPEDE!!!

I would most like let out a wee screen, flick the centipede across the room and then take a photo for facebook/instagram. I'm not sure what I'd do with the centipede next - as I live in the middle of town and there's no trees or grass around here. I think I'd put it in the car park and hope for the best for the little guy.

I guess I should say here though - generally creepy crawlies don't freak me out too much - however if in this proposed scenario it had been a cockroach or a huhu beetle, Alicia would hear me screaming from Pennsylvania.

Fun fact - this actual scenario happened to Alicia, well actually perhaps that's not so fun.

Alicia also sent me a "bonus question"

bonus question: what's the best thing about being a kiwi? 

 I'm not even sure where to start on this one - so, so many good things about being born in New Zealand.

The more I see of the world - the more I realise just how lucky I was to be born at the bottom of the world. Sure we are far from perfect, but there's a hell of a lot of good things happening down here and I'm so lucky to be part of it all.

So in no particular order - here's the top five things about being a Kiwi (for me at least):

1) Kiwis don't take themselves too seriously

Compared with other people I have met in my travels, Kiwis just don't take themselves too seriously and making fun of your friends, family and yourself is just part of life.

Where else in the world would a police officer have a conversation with a suspect like this:

2) We make some of the best movies in the world

So perhaps I'll a little bit bias about this one, but we do make some incredible movies in this country, often on a tiny budget.

Here's a few of my favourite Kiwi films of all time:

The Quiet Earth

2. Sleeping Dogs
3. Meet the Feebles

 4. Vigil

5. In My Father's Den

3) In the grand scheme of things, New Zealand is a very liberal country and social change appears to happen very quickly

One thing I noticed living in Korea was that the physical environment changed very quickly - a 10 story building could go up in a matter of months and the built environment was constantly changing. However, the the social context were very slow to change. Whilst living there I met people who were surprised that New Zealand had a female Prime Minister - they were even more shocked when I told them she was the second female Prime Minister and had been the Prime Minister for nine years.

In my relatively short lifetime I can remember the legalise prostitution bill and the civil union bill both going to the house with great controversy - but now people seem pretty accepting of both acts and just get on with their lives. Just recently a bill passed its first reading in the house which will allow same sex couples to marry, I'm hopeful that will pass into law also.

Down here, things do seem to change pretty quickly and I think I would struggle to live in a country where things are more conservative or where change was slow to come.

Also - New Zealand was the first country in the world to give women the vote in 1893, women in this country have had the right to vote for over 119 years. That's pretty incredible.
Image from Te Ara
4) I can have a professional job and still wear whatever I want to work

This certainly isn't the view in the whole country, the rural areas do tend to be more conservative, but it seems in Wellington - particularly in the public service, you are judged on your skills and talents rather than what you look like.

This means that I can still dress how I want and hold down a good job - I'm pretty sure in other parts of the world, I'd be expected to put on a black suit and march to the beat of a corporate drum. That's really not the case here at all! I work with people with piercing and visible tattoos and its not an issue.

Also my hair extension in whatever rainbow colour they may be have never been questioned or so much as raised an eyebrow in my office.

Although - more than one person has told me that I do bring colour to the workplace - which is a positive thing!

I think I'd feel like I was losing a bit of myself if I had to "tone it down" to have a job I loved - thankfully in this part of the world, I can have both!

 5. It's BEAUTIFUL down here!

This music video - "Aotearoa" (which is Te Reo Maori for New Zealand) by Minuit came out when I was living in South Korea. I watched it in my classroom and I just about lost it - pretty much everything that's good about New Zealand is in this video. Enjoy!

Last but not least - New Zealand - WHAKA YEAH! (You may not get about 90% of this if you're not a Kiwi - sorry)


Unknown said...

I'm convinced - I'm coming over!

I have always thought that Australia and New Zealand both have incredible natural beauty - but NZ has always been a lot more socially progressive. Australia can be a really small minded place, and I don't get that feeling from NZ at all.

Fantastic post - I love that you love your country so much! (And that black and white dress ROCKS THE HOUSE!)

Sarah xxx

Meghan Edge said...

... I think I need to live in New Zealand now. Can I be there tomorrow? Anyone have a teleportation pad I can borrow?

I loved your answer to both questions, although having had several "scooters" in my bedroom I can tell you I wouldn't be as calm. I'll try to kick them out before you come to see me (one day!).

I love love love that black dress with the bib. SO MUCH. I think I could do that with a Lisette pattern.. (ponders this)

Penny-Rose said...

Cool post - your comments about NZ are spot on, it is a truly beautiful place to live. The blue dress with the big white and green flower pattern is just so awesome.

Stacey said...

I'm totally coming to visit! NZ looks so beautiful. My parents came over for a trip last year, and they fell in love with the place (Plus, I'm a total Lord of the Rings nerd, so I pretty much have to come).

I wish I had a job with such a relaxed dress code! I mean, I can't wear nice things to work at a Kindy anyway, but I've never had a job that didn't have a uniform. :(

Vintage Bird Girl said...

Oh don't go giving me even more reasons to want to move to NZ. I must say I kind of feel more patriotic towards NZ then Oz. The country is SO beautiful, with rolling green hills, mountains & rivers that have a colour unlike anything here. I love the movie 'Once were Warriors' although I must say the TV isn't quite as good as it is here. If only my hubby could make good money there I think we'd be over in a flash!!! I LOVE the blue & white frock...such a fab retro pattern. Whaka Yeah cracked me up! Xx

Vix said...

I'm short of time at the moment but I promise to come back tomorrow and read your post properly! xxx

Krista said...

This post is totally the reason why I dig you and now I understand a bit more about who you are. I love your free spirit and I am convinced that people in New Zealand are a bit odd and open minded, two things I adore in people. I love all these images of your adorable self and the place you love calling home!

CityScape Skybaby said...

The only NZ film I've seen is The Shark and the Eagle which I liked, so I'll have to check these out. New Zealand does look very beautiful, it's a place Idon't know much about so thank you for giving me a little insight in this blog. xx

cb said...

I wanna move to nz!!!!! I have heard so many great things about it. It sounds like such a magical place. Great post, it was really interesting to read!

Julia said...

LOL those videos are awesome!
The police one will always make me laugh :)

alicia said...

can i just live there now please??? i have no idea what was happening in ANY of those videos, but i want IN. i could do without the huhu beetles though...

thank you for the great answers to my questions! <3

Lakota [Faith Hope and Charity Shopping] said...

I know next to nada about NZ, but that video really made me laugh. And I love Flight of the Conchords, so that's good enough for me! One day when I'm rich I'll visit.

Helga said...

This is anawesome post!You've summed up everything I love about being an Honorary Kiwi!!!

Pull Your Socks Up! said...

Hello Trees! I loved every detail of this post, I don't recognise your lovely local beauty spots as I'm originally from Northland and haven't been to Welly, but I'm in stitches over "always blow on the pie" - unbelievable!!!! Following you on Instagram now:) xo