Monday, February 28, 2011

Visit of Europa

Today Norfolk Island welcomed 300 German visitors.

They landed on Norfolk from the Europa, that moored of Kingston, to a magnificent Norfolk autumn day.  The visitors went fishing, shopping, or toured around the island.  Enjoy these few photos.

THe Europa off the convict ruins at Kingston

 The Europa with Phillip Island in the background

 The reef at Slaughter Bay, looking to Emily Bay, Kingston.

Returning from fishing aboard Advance 2

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Poetry in the Park

The Community Arts Society of Norfolk Island's 10th Poetry in the Park was held today at beautiful Camelot Gardens on Rooty Hill Road.

The MC for this years event was Nicola Kennedy, who introduced 17 poets and over 20 poems, many performed in the Norf'k language.  The poems will be compiled into a blogsite in the coming weeks for you to read and enjoy - so keep an eye out for that!

Nicola introduced the evening by saying:

"Good evening, welkam and watawieh Ladies and Gentlemen.

Poetry is 'language concentrate'.  The rules are bent to allow the words to saturate our senses. 

A poem can make us laugh, make us cry, rally us to causes, make us swoon.  No other language form is as potent.

So prepare yourselves for a short evening of potent sense saturation!

Ten years ago Community Arts member Dean Johnson's vision for a community poetry evening was realised and it is continuing to delight us all still.

I think it is only appropriate to open proceedings with one simple stanza from one of the poems from that very first Poetry in the Park.  And I think you'll agree that in the light of what I've just said about poetry and sens saturation; it's absolutely spot on.  Archie Bigg remined us:

'So my friends if you eat nanwi
Take some good avice from me
Eat it early for your breakfast
Don't eat nanwi for your tea!'"

Recently at BAUNTI we met a poet from Australia who came into our office in Burnt Pine and started to recite some of his poems.  His name was Mal Castledine (with wife left).  Nicola ended this year's event with one of his poems - and a very appropriate one it was given Poetry in the Park was held in a beautiful Norfolk garden.  Thank you Mal.


There's a house and garden ... not far from here,
My memories of them are very clear.

Mrs Vidler lived there when I was small,
She planted some trees and now they're tall.

She fussed over roses, that I thought were dead,
But each summer they burst into blossom instead.

She laughed when I said, 'I hated their thorn',
She said 'You smell their perfume in the early morn.'

She was there each morning when I walked to school,
weeding the garden on her kneeling stool.

And in the afternoon when I'd walk by,
I'd complain about school and she'd give me some pie.

Birds and butterflies were always around,
When she planted some seeds or dug up the ground.

But she was never lonely ... when I think back and see ...
She had God,
She had garden,
and of course
She had me.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Wellness in our world

On Norfolk Island there are masseuses who work in a room of their homes and masseuses that work in beauty salons, but Aurelia is a home that has been totally converted into a health, fitness and relaxation centre and offers the services of a masseuse. It has a beautifully paved driveway leading to dedicated parking space. It has well appointed bathroom facilities, massage rooms, exercise rooms, a flotation tank room, a sauna room and a kitchen that can provide healthy refreshments suitable to the treatments being offered. There is no other business on Norfolk that offers these facilities, not to mention the services that go with them, or even the coordinated programs that link them into full wellness experiences.

As well as the amazing facilities at Aurelia, you can enjoy a massage ... in the beautiful outdoors in The World of Norfolk.  Come on over and be pampered at Aurelia.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Our part in Australia's Day

This week we celebrated Australia Day on Norfolk Island with a public holiday and official functions and awards at Government House. Here, January 26th has deep and resonating meaning for Norfolk Island. In 1788, the first fleet made landfall in the great south land, Terra Australis, on that day, but immediately plans were made to send the flagship, Sirius, to Norfolk Island to establish the main food and manufacturing centre for the new colony.

Cook’s reports of a lush, pine covered island in the South Pacific with potential for providing the English navy with masts, spars and sails, had been one of the strong points in favour of the selection of Australia as a British penal settlement. So just six weeks after the fist landing at Botany Bay, Phillip Gidley King and his small band of convict men and women and marines established the first outpost on Norfolk Island, and named it, Sydney. We celebrate this occasion on 6th March as ‘Foundation Day’.

Therefore, 26th January, 1788 is an extremely important date for Norfolk Island, because it effectively marks the start of our history of European settlement as well as Australia’s. And our first settlers were ‘First Fleeters’. Interestingly, we have a number of people living on the island who are descended from some of these remarkable people. In fact, there are two women whose female ancestors were tried at the same time in England, transported together on the first fleet and then both were selected to come to Norfolk Island because their skills and good behaviour marked them as ideal pioneers.

It is also interesting to note that many of the convicts who came to Norfolk Island between 1788 and 1814 were granted their freedom and became prosperous farmers here. They then went on to become some of the most successful landowners and business people of Van Diemen’s Land and New South Wales and their descendants have gone on to even greater things.

Unfortunately, Norfolk is also the final resting place of the ‘Sirius’, which was perhaps the best equipped vessel of the first fleet. She was certainly critical to the communications and supply lines between Sydney Cove and Norfolk Island and her sinking led to great hardship in both places. It took great ingenuity and courage to survive following the sinking and sadly, at least one species of bird was all but wiped out as a result. The ‘Providence’ petrel that nested in the roots of the pines on the hillsides was hunted relentlessly to feed the starving community.

However, both settlements did recover from this calamity and while the convict settlement on Norfolk was eventually closed in 1814, another was re-established in 1825. When this establishment was closed in 1856, Queen Victoria gifted the island to the Pitcairn Islanders, descendants of the mutineers from the ‘Bounty’ and their Polynesian wives and they made Norfolk their home from 8th June, 1856.

There are those who wonder why we celebrate Australia Day with so much fanfare yet do little to mark Waitangi Day, considering so many New Zealanders have made this their home. However, the celebration of Australia Day has a twofold significance for Norfolk Islanders. We celebrate the day to acknowledge our role in the Australian Commonwealth and welcome those members of our community who choose to take Australian citizenship; but we also pay homage to the vital role Norfolk Island played in the foundation of the Australian nation.

Bill Blucher and Marie Bailey - Australia Day Awards (OAM)

Alan Tavener (L) Citizen of the Year; Mark Karlsrap (R)
Junior Sports Award;
with the Administrator Owen Walsh and wife Bianca

'New' Australian Citizens - Ken Lunn, Dave South, Liz and Peter Walkinshaw

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Artistic Flair at Wearable Arts

On Saturday evening (22 January 2011), the Wearable Arts Festival at Rawson Hall showcased a vast array of waste products miraculously transformed into haute couture and cutting edge fashion.

This celebration is eagerly anticipated by the local residents each year. The Festival is organised by the Community Arts Society and over the years it has become a truly memorable spectacle. There are five categories of entries: recycled materials, ‘bizarre bra’, natural fibres, from the ocean or the sky - (birds / marine life) and extravagant open. The garments that are created range from underwear and sportswear to the most elaborate evening gowns. Every conceivable style, era and influence is mined to produce these flights of fancy.

Artists showed their own creations, or used a model, and whoever dis the wearing had to be prepared to ‘shake that bootay’! The music was pumping, the lights strobed, and it was up-tempo from opening curtain at 7pm, until the very last prize winner was announced.

Winner: Dress made from recycled stubbie can flip tops

Recycled material - Dress made from coffee cups

Origami dress

Dress made from paperbark

Winner: Dresses and hats made from tapa cloth