Loves a new per­spec­tive

Northern News - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS -

Brent Strathdee-Pehi, 41, teacher and mu­si­cian, lives in Kaikohe.

What do you like best about the Far North?

The ac­cess to great beaches, the laid-back life­style, hot sum­mer and space. The Far North is pretty sparsely pop­u­lated so go­ing some­where re­mote and peace­ful is su­per easy.

How long have you lived here and where are you orig­i­nally from?

I’ve lived here for five years, I’m orig­i­nally from both

Auck­land and the South Is­land but have lived all over Aotearoa.

I grew up mov­ing a lot and have lived in as wide a va­ri­ety of set­ting as you’re likely to find in NZ, in­clud­ing a tent.

What do you like least and how can we fix it?

The so­cio-eco­nomic strug­gles that cre­ate per­ceived dif­fer­ences be­tween com­mu­ni­ties.

Yes there are have’s and havenots, but our sim­i­lar­i­ties far out­weigh our dif­fer­ences no mat­ter who we are or where we’re from.

I think we could ac­knowl­edge and cel­e­brate th­ese things more.

What’s your favourite eatery?

‘‘I'm con­stantly re­minded of how beau­ti­ful the re­gion is, even ar­eas we may not typ­i­cally think of as at­trac­tive can sur­prise you when seen from the air.’’

Brent Strathdee-Pehi

My wife Sarah’s Asian cook­ing is re­ally good so I’ll roll with that op­tion any day. I travel reg­u­larly in South-East Asia for both leisure and vis­it­ing (my Dad lives in Thai­land much of each year) and have def­i­nitely de­vel­oped taste­buds for their kai.

Your high­light of the week? Jam­ming and singing with my stu­dents at school. Mu­sic has been a ma­jor thing most of my life and I’m still of­ten in won­der­ment that I get to do it as a job.

Who is the Kiwi you most ad­mire?

I ad­mire many peo­ple for many rea­sons at dif­fer­ent times, but right now I have great ad­mi­ra­tion for North­lander Will Flavell - a young mul­ti­lin­gual (English, Maori, Ja­panese, Samoan) teacher, aca­demic and Auck­land coun­cil­lor who works hard for the bet­ter­ment of his West Auck­land com­mu­nity.

I’m work­ing on be­ing mul­ti­lin­gual my­self and he is a great ex­am­ple of that . He’s a pos­i­tive role model for young Ma¯ ori and peo­ple in gen­eral. Did I men­tion he’s a North­lander?

The spot in North­land I’d rec­om­mend is?

Kai Iwi Lakes - it’s an awe­some sum­mer spot, a unique place that is off the beaten track yet still ac­ces­si­ble.

If I were Far North mayor I’d...

Put ex­per­tise and fund­ing into devel­op­ing bet­ter sig­nage de­sign, busi­ness ar­eas and ba­sic aes­thet­ics for our small towns and coun­try stops. We have such a beau­ti­ful nat­u­ral re­gion, yet so many towns, shops and stops look run down or ill suited to their nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment.

I’m no graphic de­signer but do busi­ness and prod­uct ad­ver­tis­ing signs have to stick out like a sore thumb while bear­ing no qual­i­ties that suit the look of the place? I’m sure we can do bet­ter.

When I’ve got a few free hours, I like to...

Shoot and edit videos with my drone.

It’s great to see things from a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive and I’m con­stantly re­minded of how beau­ti­ful the re­gion is, even ar­eas we may not typ­i­cally think of as at­trac­tive can sur­prise you when seen from the air.

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