By Murray Dewhurst in Auckland, New Zealand.
Here are a couple of landscape sketches to help fill out the blanks of my earlier post. This is the view from Summit Road looking down on Akaroa and the harbour — fairly rural and remote despite being only an hour from Christchurch.
|Akaroa and harbour from the Summit Road|
|Lighthouse view toward French Bay|
|Te Whare Karakia o Ōnuku|
A few kilometers along the coast is Onuku where just past the marae you'll find one of the prettiest little churches anywhere. Perched just up the bank from the harbour, Te Whare Karakia o Ōnuku (roughly meaning 'the prayer house of Onuku') the ornately carved church opened in 1878 as the first non-denominational church in New Zealand. Onuku is important as the first location in the South Island where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed.
Then over the other side of the peninsular over steep, winding roads is Okains Bay. We found lots of hardy people camping in the campground by the beach despite the cold. Up the road by the old store locals were competing in some Easter tradition of egg and spoon and sack races. We warmed up with blue cod fish and chips and big pot of tea from the Okains Bay Store and enjoyed the spectacle. The store looks well used like it has been the center of life for the bay for a very long time with postboxes inside and what looks like an old workshop next door.
Then there's the museum. It has got to be one of the best in the country as well as one of the most remote. Quite small and unassuming looking from the road, it started as a family collection that has grown into an incredible collection of Maori, Chatham Island Moriori and early colonial artifacts. Displays include an awesome collection of waka, a working smithy, a meeting house and and even an old outhouse (we didn't try it find out if it was working!) housed in a collection of local old buildings that have been moved to the site each one packed with interesting stuff.
The kids loved it but I knew I only had time to draw one item, what I ended up drawing probably isn't the oldest or most important piece, but as a solid 1 meter square chunk of Totara I was attracted to the solidity and sculptural aspects of it. You could easily spent a few days sketching here!
|Okains Bay store|