It’s a crazy beautiful morning as I write this, a final note to wrap up my time here with Splice.
In the true spirit of city centre community cooperation, Planning Students from Auckland University, the Dept of Internal Affairs and Splice have been working together looking at public spaces and throughways in the city.
“With violence, as with so many other concerns, human nature is the problem, but human nature is also the solution.”
Neighbours Day 2016, in Freyberg Square, provided a great opportunity for city centre residents and visitors to the city to meet up and enjoy the free barbecue, music, food, art, chess and other games.
This is something I began asking myself many years ago when I finished uni and was desperately hunting for meaningful employment in a field I actually wanted to be in.
Perhaps I am odd? Close friends and family often tell me so - I remember the names of so many people I met 50 plus years ago, but regularly forget the names of people I met five minutes ago or worse, of people I work with on a daily basis!
Living in a small space in the city centre with babies or toddlers can be very trying. Children become bored and ‘stay at home’ parents can feel frustrated.
When it was suggested that I represent Splice at Harry Baker’s poetry workshop, the machine gun of doubt immediately fired a volley of shots in my head. Would everyone attending be up and coming poets and I the only beginner? Would I be expected to actually write poetry? Would I have to read it OUT LOUD TO A GROUP OF STRANGERS?!
Unexpected hugs are those hugs we grow to love or to hate.
As we know, hugs are a normal part of the bonding process. Hugs if we let them can prove to be inspiring and life changing. Who needs to eat an apple a day when you could have a hug a day instead, right?
As I continue my Splice journey, exploring the high-rise forests, the leafy parks, the sparkling waters and the history of Auckland’s Central City I never cease to be surprised and excited by the diverse, cosmopolitan city I have moved to.
Christmas this year was filled with unexpected gifts. Unexpected gifts displaying imperfect labels, reading: anxiety, bipolar and personality disorder.
I began my role with Splice near the end of 2014 and couldn’t wait to build work right into my life. But as soon as I started I realised- what is my work? There’s no instruction manual for my role- it’s called Creative Ideas & Engagement (a title I made up myself,) and when your ultimate aim is to connect people in Auckland’s city centre it takes a bit of experimentation to figure out just how to do that.
The building of community and the strands that come together to create strength, often come from the building of relationships that connect across the neighbourhood.
Last week I met with Brady the owner of Active Building Management, a community-minded fellow giving his time to discuss the pivotal role of building manager for residents in the city centre neighbourhood. During that conversation the Koha Shed on Gundry Street (just off K Road) came up...
When I told my friends I was leaving my long - time home in Mt Maunganui to work in Auckland they looked at me as if I was mad.
‘Why on earth would you do that?’ they asked.
So I told them I was going because I had a job I believed would be stimulating, challenging and rewarding. That got them interested.
‘What is your job?’ was the obvious next question.