FROM THE EDITOR this week WE’RE LOVING
YVONNE KERR 8 16 22 35
When I was a penniless student in Dublin, I’d phone home once a week to let my parents know I was still alive and to plead for more money, often reversing the charges (remember those days?!). If my father picked up the phone, his first words were always: “Hang on, I’ll put you onto your mother.” It wasn’t that we didn’t speak, far from it, but back then we never had phone conversations. Our face-to-face interactions too, were limited to a brief exchange of niceties – Dad was a busy man. A farmer with a multitude of things to get through every day, when he wasn’t on the go outside, he was eating or reading the newspaper or sleeping.
That’s all changed now he’s retired. My weekly phone calls on my way to work from the other side of the world are more important to us both – these days, it’s no longer to ask for money (well, so far this year) but to check that he’s well and to update him on his grandson’s latest development phase (teething, crawling) – and Dad will talk and talk and talk.
I cherish these chats, though I’m not sure passers-by do, or my companions on the bus, shouting as I must to be heard at the end of the phone line in Ireland above the sound of Auckland’s city din. (See page 5 for Fiona Barber’s take on commuters on cellphones.)
These chats are gold, they are my lifeline to home. I get all the goss – who’s sick, been born, pregnant, dying, dead, engaged, separated, divorced, been arrested… My father has an incredible capacity for detail, and at 87, an outstanding memory. I’m one lucky gal. Happy Father’s Day for tomorrow, dads.
Scaling new heights:
This glorious photo of Sir Edmund Hillary, his son Peter and a good friend was taken at 3800m altitude near the village of Khunde, close to Mt Everest in 1983. Turn to page 8 for the story. YOUR WEEKEND | 2 SEPTEMBER 2017
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2 SEPTEMBER 2017
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