Grande Tour Jour­nals

NZ Today - - LETTERS -

Hello Sarah, I en­dorse your ed­i­to­rial state­ment; Wel­come Back Al­lan Dick. It was a de­light to read and reread, in is­sue 56 of NZTODAY, Al­lan’s jour­nal on The Grande Tour of the South Is­land. Writ­ten in his inim­itable jour­nal­is­tic style. The very foun­da­tion of NZTODAY.

Over a num­ber of years, my wife and I have ex­plored the South Is­land (and in­deed Ste­wart Is­land) from north to south and east to west, in­clud­ing the high back-coun­try down to the east and west coasts, via 4WD, tramp­ing, kayak­ing and cy­cling, small plane and train. Dur­ing and af­ter each trip to the North Is­land and back I write up a de­tailed Jour­nal cov­er­ing our daily trav­els, people met on the way, per­ti­nent his­toric events and fea­tures past. I find a jour­nal a greater aide de mem­oir than the ex­ten­sive pho­to­graphs we all take to­day.

With the ex­cep­tion of the sand­fly plagued Lake Haunoko and Cramp­ton’s Bush park, we have been to all the places writ­ten about and pho­tographed by Al­lan and the Nav­i­ga­tor on their Grande Tour, even in­clud­ing the schist tors on Old Man Range. Read­ing Al­lan’s Jour­nal, cov­er­ing only a few of the South Is­land gems, again re­ac­ti­vates the pre­cious mem­o­ries past.

I can read­ily iden­tify with the Dick’s di­etary sup­ple­ments. Whilst in camp strong Nescafé cof­fee & milk (sweet­ened con­densed), which comes in cans and also con­ve­nient weka proof tubes, can even be taken by spoon when wa­ter is scarce. The café fare whilst on the road con­sists of the “South­ern Man’s” del­i­ca­cies of cheese rolls, mut­ton pies and cream buns. All are, of course, di­etary es­sen­tials to bal­ance the camp­ing sta­ple of boiled spuds. Thanks Al­lan for a great road trip. Kind re­gards, Graeme Pearce Waitoki North­land. ED. Dear Graeme, thank you for your let­ter and I agree about the jour­nal. An old flame of mine only wrote a jour­nal when he vis­ited Paris, de­lib­er­ately leav­ing his cam­era at home. Re-read­ing the jour­nal many years later, he says, brings him far more vivid mem­o­ries than pho­tos. As you say, words are a won­der­ful “aide de mem­oir”.

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