Archive for February, 2013

A Day in the World

A neighbor turns a blind eye,

A civil war begins;

A mugging goes unnoticed,

Dying with no friends.


Racism raises ugly head,

Riots, screams and fire;

Children going unfed

And clothed in ragged attire.


Employer takes advantage

Of youthful will to work;

Another drunken driver,

Gunman goes beserk.


An arsonist starts a fire,

Husband rejects wife;

Tragedy strikes at sea,

Teenager takes his life.


But is it all so gloomy?

Is there nothing right this day?

Are we here for only blackness

Like a dreary, dismal day?



A man discovers Shakespeare,

Someone visits Bath;

A fireworks display,

Child learns his math.


A ceasefire and some peace talks,

People meet halfway;

Two girls find a new friend

And smile as they play.


A youth returns a wallet,

Elections fairly held;

Harmony ‘mongst neighbors,

It’s peaceful on the veld.


Young couple pay their home off,

Research finds a cure;

A loving pair do marry

And glows show in the mirror.


I now walk down the pleasant path

With fingers cold and curled;

And get a nice warm feeling,

All’s not bad in this funny world.


Last stop – Christchurch, my home for 13 years. I knew it was going to be different; the earthquakes took care of that.

Anyway, took a bus up from Dunedin; that meant we had traveled by plane, train, bus, boat, taxi and private cars. The only thing missing was a horse. Arrived to a meal of goat stew (I am sure there is a more flattering name) put on by long-time friends Dave and Shona. Great night of conversation with them & their sons, Gavin and Evan.

First full day was spent in central Christchurch, or what you could see of it. After almost two years since the last big quake the city still looks like a war zone. When you see half of the Christchurch Cathedral gone, it reminds one of pictures of bombed-out cities in World War II.


Christchurch Cathedral, November 2012

Heartbreaking for sure (the Bohemian ran out of words) but knowing Cantabrians, they will put it right in style.

From the central city, where they were tearing things down, to the Art Centre (the old University of Canterbury)  one immediately saw the difference as all of a sudden, renovations were in full swing. Very uplifting! We had lunch at a makeshift cafe’ across the street from the Art Centre, enjoying a panini and coffee, when I made the statement, “Those damn seagulls seem to have found a new place to bother people other than the Square.”Well, three seconds later, “”plop”” and a big white blob hit me square in the shoulder. Should keep my mouth shut.

A two hour wander through Hagley Park and the Christchurch Botanical Gardens seemed to be 10 years back in time: Mrs Bohemian and I could not see any evidence of the power of the earthquakes. We could only see the beauty of the rose garden and memories of weddings, concerts and leisurely walks through nature’s finest.


Entrance to the Rose Garden in the Christchurch Botanical Gardens

One of the most enjoyable days we had was catching up with my nieces Jenny and Rose, both of whom overcame incredible odds to become mothers. You could see this in their faces, especially Rose, who was still pregnant at the time; she hadn’t yet had the true joy of motherhood (i.e. early morning, upset stomachs, etc.). But young Pippin has arrived and I am sure Lynda, the now three-time grandmother, is beaming. Oh yes, in order to see Rose, I had to get the courage up to revert to driving on the right-hand side of the road. Mission accomplished.

The rest of our time was spent catching up with old workmates Kelvin and Paul at the Boatshed Bar, a barbeque with the Clarke and Vuleta families, seeing the destruction caused by the ‘quake in Sumner, and a trip to my old haunt (ex-Merrin Street Tavern). By luck of the draw got to dine on domesticated venison and monkfish.

But, our journey had to end. Up at 6 am, fly to Auckland, long haul to Tahiti, even longer haul to Los Angeles. Both Mrs. Bohemian and I had really had enough by the time we got back to Denver, but at least we arrived to unseasonably warm weather.  So with our weary bodies, we got back to our quiet little lives, ready to plan the next excursion.

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