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Tuesday, 7 January 2014

A Summer's Day and Keeping it Great

There is nothing like a New Zealand Summer - blue skies and gentle breezes.
I don't mean to sound boasty, but we don't go away for a holiday in Summer because it is just perfect where we are. 
Today we took the boat across the road to the river, and within 15 minutes were at this beach - which has no public road access.

New Zealand Summer,the beach 15 minutes from home

We spent the day driftwood gathering, reading in the shade and having a picnic lunch. Divine!
That's me under the huge old Pohutukawa tree.

Pohutukawa tree, New Zealand

We picked up a bit of rubbish while we were there. There was quite a lot of pumice so that came back too for me to make more pumice totems (see in an earlier post)

The beach rubbish pick up

We met a young man on the beach when we arrived...shame I didn't ask for a photo, but not the done thing. He was of Maori descent, on his family land for a holiday with his two gorgeous children. He was in nice shape, with plentiful tattoos and a turret shell through each earlobe.
The most remarkable thing about him though was his passion for the land. He was making sure we weren't going to disturb nesting birds, and I loved how he said he taught his children to pick up rubbish off the beach.
We talked about how the fishing and shellfish beds were no longer as good, and his disgust with people who take greedily.
It was a conversation strangely like what I have been reading about in this very interesting book - Confessions of an Eco Sinner by Fred Pearce.
The author traces where his stuff comes from to give their story with an eco slant.

"A T-shirt for instance. Britain imports almost half a billion T-shirts each year. About eight each. They often cost little more than the price of a beer. Yet to make the cotton for the average 250 gram T-shirt requires 80 grams of fertilizer, 3 grams of active ingredient in pesticides, and between 2,000 and 7,000 litres of water, or upwards of 30 bath tubs full. For one T-shirt."
Fred Pearce travels the world and his stories aren't all statistics, they are mostly about the people. Pick this book up if you see it.

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