It the first day of autumn and a little cool with a breezy southerly but it was still a good day for a walk in the city. The NZ Festival for 2014 has recently started and the weekend saw a number of events taking place on the waterfront. Keryn was getting a haircut so Alayna and I had some time together checking out the sights.
Beside the statue of Solace of the Wind eight shipping containers had been placed in two rows of four. Approaching the containers there were strange sounds emanating and one of the containers had an open door. Inside was a strange sight.
At the back of the container a woman sat at a table and she was using tweezers to pick up hairs from a heaped pile and delicately straightening them before laying each hair in a new pile. Between her and the open door there was shelving which held blocks of ice each lit so a fish could just be made out suspended in the frozen water. There was no explanation to be found (that I saw) so I shall assume this was a scene stolen from an unshot Terry Gilliam movie and transported to a random corner of Wellington.
Nearby was a complex of shipping containers with a variety of weird and wonderful goings on. There was an open container with two LCD screens facing away from each other in the center and cameras set up so that each screen reflected the view from the other side. It would have been easy to look around each screen to see the same view but the camera and forced disconnection allowed people to act up where they normally would have no reason. I can see why there were signs up warning about metaphobia.
There were a few water features; one container on its end with a shallow pool at the bottom and a constant drip coming from above and another being constantly flooded by an overflowing bath on its roof (the bath was occupied the first time I walked past).
There were a few different takes on weaving and knots. The container seen above had a constantly working group of people, both site workers and the general public, tying knots and creating a messy web. Another container seemed to house a project management group who had their planning displayed on the walls and chalkboards to the side asking for more lemons. The goal seemed to be to sew lemons together, I’m not sure to what purpose.
There was also what could have been a death reformation group (“help us change our ways!” on the sign next to the sythe propped up against the container wall, the blade replaced by brightly coloured balloons. I’m sure there was more to puzzle over as well.
Heading back towards the city I came upon a small circus act. Alayna and I watched juggling, a rope gymnastic piece and an entertaining finale involving members of the public (hairy man, big man, family man, wo-man), more juggling, a strong man performance and a couple of unicycles.
WE met up with Keryn again (with her lovely haircut) and promptly headed back to the container quarter to show her the sights. Returned past Te Papa a group of dancers had appeared. They were still when we came on the scene, frozen in place. Then the music started and one at a time they came to life with short dances, each perhaps themed on a different Pacific culture.
WE then grabbed some lunch and headed to the botanical gardens to eat and feed Alayna. As we had out lunch Alayna sat quietly in the pram, idly chewing on what parts she could grab. My lens cap became a good distraction as I tried to get some photos, Alayna duly rewarded by some chew time (and then a better chew toy, Sophie the Giraffe). It’d be good if every Saturday was this pleasant.