22 May 2005

Just because I've been so slack...

...I thought I'd get another post in today.

I got new glasses on Friday, and they're taking some getting used to. The optometrist reckoned the prescription hadn't changed that much. I really noticed it when I wandered out on to the street though. I felt about a metre tall cos the ground seemed so close. It was like I could reach out and touch it.

In a possibly misguided attempt to help the adjustment process I've mostly spent the weekend reading Francis Wheen's How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World and Michael King's Being Pakeha Now.

The Wheen book was a fun read, even though it was preaching to the converted. It's nice to have your prejudices confirmed every now and then, as long as that's not all you do. The King book was a bit of a disappointment - it was made up of bits and pieces from a variety of sources and the seams showed a little too much. Maybe because it was so autobiographical, it made me reflect on my own situation.

When I was a kid I didn't really feel like a New Zealander (I'm the first Cauchi born here). In a funny kind of way, I'm a direct product of British imperialism. My Maltese grandfather probably wouldn't have married my English grandmother if Britain hadn't taken Malta off the French during the Napoleonic wars, and my parents wouldn't have met if New Zealand hadn't been a British colony for them to emigrate to. I think I had a funny idea about being more British than New Zealander until I actually met some British people and realised how foreign they were - and not at all like the image I'd formed.

When I left school I had no interest in going on the traditional OE, but travelled extensively around the country instead, much more than most people I know. I've lived in Auckland (though not since I was seven), Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, and Dunedin. I've driven down all of the main roads and many a back road between Cape Reinga and Bluff. My whakapapa might be Maltese and English, but this is my turangawaewae - my place to stand.

1 comment:

Mike said...

Hi Dave,

Your must be proud to be a MalteseZealander. I'm Maltese myself and I'm think of moving to New Zealand. Drop me a line if you wish my blog is http://www.mindspill.org


visitors since 29 March 2004.