Is it a road?
I have solution to the ongoing road maintenance issues that plague Rodney’s unsealed roads. First a bit of background. Our “road” has become almost impassable, especially for anyone naive enough to drive a small economical two-wheel drive car. After approaching Auckland Transport (AT), we were informed they don’t have the budget to fix the road in the interim and maintenance would be sometime in July or August. This leaves us in the weird Kafkaesque situation of paying rates for a road when we don’t actually have a road. This is the dictionary definition of a road:
“A wide way leading from one place to another, especially one with a specially prepared surface which vehicles can use.”
Now the thing that runs from our house can neither be described as wide, specially prepared and it certainly cannot be used by vehicles without risk of damage to person or property.
So here is my cunning plan, and I am surprised AT has not come up with this themselves: just rebrand the roads. For example, Ahuroa Valley Road could become Ahuroa Valley Track. The definition of a track is:
“A rough path or road, typically one beaten by use rather than constructed.”
Which is a much better description of the product we are being supplied with by AT. Alternatively, as track could be confused with our great walks, how about Ahuroa Valley Path? A path is:
“A way or track laid down for walking or made by continual treading.”
And as vehicle use will be limited, there will be a lot of continual treading. As a final suggestion, and my favourite, Ahuroa Valley Trail, with a trail being:
“A track made by passage especially through a wilderness” or “marked or established path or route especially through a forest or mountainous region.”
In World War I, the Germans described the British as “lions led by donkeys”, which I think is an apt way to describe AT. I am now going to go buy a donkey so I can traverse Ahuroa Valley and pray to God the poor thing does not break a leg in one of the potholes.
S Gonzales, Ahuroa Valley Trail
What does an 18-year-old want to say in decapitating a depiction of sovereignty? Has anyone ever asked, “Why for 20 years the statue of King George V has been actively vandalised as separate to the memorial itself?” It might be time to ask that question rather than throwing more money, money the RSA could use for its elevator for the living, at a statue of a representation that makes little sense, well, at least to one 18-year-old.
I am sure all ages value the memorial to those locals whose lives were taken fighting in a bloody, brutal war buried under foreign lands far from their blessed tranquil homeland. Many 18-year-olds may well come up with an apt memorial more suited for this age of remembering.
Being a similar age to those we are memorialising must mean something. The days of scrapping, as summarised in the motto under which the British army went to war in 1914, of ‘Fighting for God, King and Country’ are indeed over. Nowadays, if God is invoked at all, the first of those authorities is likely to provoke contention rather than unity, or at least be reduced to its place in religious parlance.
The second wanes in significance even though such a monarchy still exists. Finally, the demand “to die for one’s country” has lost much appeal in the global, inter-dependent world order. General Patton made some apt comment about dying for country, as did Blackadder, God, King and Country and not necessarily in that order.
It is hard to believe any of us have an appetite for war, for God, king or country. Indeed, war is a reptilian brain response consigned to a bygone era and well- deserving of being decapitated. What is being said with the vandalising of a statue in a memorial of not forgotten men and women of our place?
Rev. Colin Gordon, RNZNavy Rtd
In the July 4 issue of Mahurangi Matters, Jenny Enderby commented about the accuracy of GPS co-ordinates, stating they were up to “eight metres out”. Unless GPS co-ordinates are “differentially corrected” they will always be inaccurate. This was a trick by the US military so co-ordinates would not be accurate to the general layman using a hand-held GPS unit. They would be better to get a surveyor to map out the accurate co-ordinates. The surveyor would also need a reference point, such as a boundary peg, to install their unit over.
John Cranston, Point Wells
To the Mangawhai community.
On 29 May 2022 my beloved husband Rob Leslie died suddenly following a medical event.
His death has felt shocking and distressing to all who knew and loved him. For me, his loss has felt devastating as we had a very special and deep love for one another.
Within hours of Rob’s passing we received a flood of food, flowers, care-packages, cards, hugs, love and kindness from all over the community. It was all so very humbling to receive and to still be receiving.
I would like each and every individual and business to know how much it has meant, how much it has helped and how much it is appreciated.
I feel somewhat overwhelmed and am not sure when I might get round to thanking everyone individually so I would like to say “thank you” very publicly.
Thank you especially to St John and Rob’s special Mangawhai Fire Brigade who worked so hard with us to try to save him. He would have felt so blessed to have you with him.
I am so very grateful to you all.
Michele Leslie (McVie)