To commemorate Anzac Day, I ate Anzac biscuits on Anzac Ave.
After that I wandered down the hill and up the other side to the museum. I think Anzac day is the only day the museum’s compulsory donation is waived, so, woohoo, I saved $5. I spent most of my time there looking around on the third floor.
The Colonial Auckland display has always been once of my favourites. When I was little I used to go into the haberdashery and pretend that I was a 1860s lady buying several yards of the purple fabric with flowers on it, then, OMG, suddenly I was transported forward in time to the 1980s and was very confused and lost. Like “Freaky Friday”, but nowhere near as cool.
I know a fellow who claims to have had a root in Colonial Auckland.
Then I wandered through the Scars On The Heart section. The bits that always get me are the holocaust gallery, the quote from the man who says that when he returned from the war no one ever asked him what it was like, and the walls of names. So many names.
There’s also the spectacular wall in the World War 2 section that has a giant swastika painted on it. It’s such a powerful image. It’s just so full of energy and strength. I felt oppressed standing next to it. The giant sun of the Japanese flag felt more embracing and warm.
I also like how the memorial alcove for the New Zealand Wars has had the metal letters that formerly said “MAORI WARS” changed to “NEW ZEALAND WARS”. It feels like a bit of denial of history. The new letters are a little wobbly, and the marks in the marble where the old letters were attached are still visible.
I had a look around the cenotaph in front of the museum. There was a selection of flowers and wreaths from various organisations and countries. St John’s Ambulance had a card with their flowers that just had their logo and slogan “The first to care”. It seemed quite inappropriate, almost offensive at that time. Surely the family and friends of the soldiers are the first to care – because they are always caring?
Later Dylzno rang me up. He was in town, bored, so I recommended that he see “The Good Girl”. A couple of hours later he rang back saying that I should have warned him about Tim Blake Nelson’s penis. Ah ha ha.