2 June 2006

100% Pure New Zealand

M has arrived into the most stunning NZ winter weather - blue sky days that are still very cold, but so much better than windy, wet ones. So far the time has been spent catching up with friends and old workmates and shopping, in between thawing out in front of the fireplace.

Things that were taken for granted when M lived in Auckland are being seen through fresh eyes, and today she made the “tourist trip” up to the top of Mt. Eden to gaze over Auckland and drink in the green and blue.

Very refreshing - 100% Pure New Zealand!

Dubai is in the local newspapers with reporters interviewing Kiwis who live there. Their message is that no one should expect to come to Dubai with the expectation of getting rich in a hurry – that like any country/city, it takes a lot of hard work, and although they love Dubai, they’ll still be coming home to NZ to settle back down and regain some of the quality of life that they miss in Dubai, such as their extended families and outdoor sporting and recreational activities.

Now if we could only drag NZ closer to the equator so that it was warmer!


The Lady said...

Stunning pictures! I'm quite jealous - this Dubai heat is unbearable. Oh, and I'd like your jobs please. :)

nzm said...

Welcome back, p(~_~)d!

Yeah - I heard that the UAE heat was overpowering right now.

If only we could funnel some of it over here and balance out the temperatures!

Seabee said...

Isn't it great to see things you took for granted with new eyes!

MamaDuck said...

I've heard it said that New Zealand's a lot like the UK. It certainly looks like the postcard version. What respectable landscapes and tidy towns! The more I see of your photos, the more frustrated I get with mine, but the convenient and idiot-proof still has a lot to recommend it. Do you carry a load of kit and use film or are you using a particularly fab digital camera? Or, as I suspect, is it all just off the cuff, and nzm is a pseudonym which, with your camera and job, are merely props to distract us from super powers,which you use to Save the World three or four times a week? Berlin. New York. San Francisco. Auckland. SuperKiwi..... hm...needs a little work...

Lord, the drivel you have to put up with when you blog.... ;)

nzm said...

Seabee - yes it is, and to also get a sense of myself back - the essence of me! It's quite amazing how out of touch with my inner self I've been since living in Dubai, and also with so much travelling for work.

Being back in NZ and also with time to relax and think, I realise how in Dubai, everyone wraps themselves in a transparent bubble of temporary immunity from living their lives while we attempt to exist in a country that we choose to come to, but in return, it chooses not to let us easily assimilate into it. Just an observation - nothing right and nothing wrong with the way that it is.

I do love living in Dubai, but ultimately I will have to leave to get back an important part of me, or find a way to retain that part of me while in Dubai, and not let it rely on environmental influences. And before this trip, I had NO IDEA that I had been affected as much as I have been! The more that I think of it, the more it makes me realise why I was so affected by certain places in Jordan, Greece and Oman – my soul came alive again in these places!

MamaDuck – the NZ countryside is a lot like England's pleasant pastures green. I've only been to the UK for very short periods of time for work, but have been there long enough to sense that they are very similar. The towns are nothing alike - English streets are very narrow, and the houses are on the sidewalks and close together! Kiwis like to put space between them, the roads and their neighbours, if they can!

As far as being SuperKiwi - ROTFLMAO! Adopted SuperKiwi is more like it, given my Pacific Island upbringing! Maybe I just should be known as SuperCitizen of the World! lol

This probably won't comfort you much, but all I use to take the majority of my photos is either a Canon S400 or a Canon G5 – both digital and nothing fancy - just point and shoot cameras.

However – this is what helps me – as well as having a keen eye for sensing what can be a good image, and also having awareness for the environment around me to see potential shots.

In a past era of my present life, I was a professional wedding and portrait photographer, but I was only average at doing this! I gave it up when the opportunity arose to pursue what I was more interested in - the processing and printing aspect of photography. So I worked for 18 years in photo labs – the majority of the time spent as lab manager and dealing with the doyennes of the NZ Professional Photography scene, as well as other influences from mostly Australia, UK and USA.

Coming at my past profession from all sides – as a photographer, as a printer, in latter years as a Photoshop user, as an advisor to many of my clients and also as a student who learned more from her peers than she could possibly teach – all this has given me the opportunity to get the most out of my photography. A sound and thorough technical background didn’t hurt either, as well as knowing how to properly expose negative and transparency film to achieve the best possible result!

I love landscapes – both urban and rural. I would love to be better at people portraits, but have to get over feeling that to take someone’s picture without asking is to be disrespectful to them. In a lot of cultures it is perceived to be this way, and I’ve missed countless opportunities to take beautiful portraits. And then of course, once you ask them, the true moment of spontaneity and naturalness is gone!

I would love to have better gear, but that also means extra weight and responsibility to take care of it when we travel. And when we travel, we don’t check in any baggage if we can help it – we carry everything with us onboard!

Lord, the drivel you write when you blog.... ;-)