Felled palms nests were empty
Over the years, my family has raised abandoned baby birds, including crows in Malaysia where they are seen as pests.
There was a time my kids brought home six ducklings after a dog had savaged the mother at Te Atiawa Park. After six months we handed the webfooted eating machines over to Nga¯ Manu. And then there was the pu¯ keko chick we named Poo — a little fluff ball propped up on ridiculously over-sized legs. I recount this in reference to the attacks against council over its decision to cut down two Phoenix palms at Waikanae’s Mahara Place.
The attacks centred around the destruction of nesting birds and their little chicks.
While I appreciate the genuine concern over vulnerable life, I want to counter-pose a question. How many of those who were quick to portray council as heartless monsters are actually consumers of chicken, beef, mutton and pork?
How many own cats? I’m not denying the right to hold council morally accountable for its actions but ask such critics to apply the same to themselves. In the event, when the Phoenix trees did come down, what sparrow nests were found were empty. Now the mammoth Phoenix palms have been removed, I look forward to new plantings. I support Destination Waikanae’s preferred choice for ko¯ whai trees. I remember a few years ago during spring, walking through the Mahara Place entrance from SH1. I counted at least seven tu¯ ı¯ fluttering though and feasting from the heavily laden ko¯ whai trees. And the singing was magic.
Talking of magic and singing, Sunday’s year-end concert by Ka¯ piti Music Centre was just that.
It was standing room only at Southwards, packed with parents and friends. The teachers and organisers did a fantastic job of showcasing the talent they had nurtured. The individual talents working in ensembles were fitted progressively into three grades of orchestra. The discipline was incredible with children and their instruments choreographed seamlessly for the different performances on a small crowded space. It was an impressive achievement at so many levels. Yet again Ka¯ piti Music Centre has proven that the Ka¯ piti Coast has a wealth of promising musicians and a host of dedicated teachers.
It is supported by the Ministry of Education and sponsors with Ka¯ piti College hosting them. No doubt they will be better served when the performing arts centre is completed.
Earlier on Saturday, I attended a family fun day at the Waikanae pools organised by social service group Atareira as part of its White Ribbon antiviolence education campaign. It includes servicing addiction and mental health issues. Currently based in Porirua, it’s manager Dan Mustapic said they are looking at setting up an office in Paraparaumu. We can always do with some additional help.
It was also an opportunity to thank Ka¯ piti’s well-known social worker, Ross McCracken. After 18 years of service healing the souls affected by the forces that shape the community’s underbelly, he’s heading back to Taranaki to spend more time with his grandchildren. We wish him well.
Lastly, I have alerted the group that attended the forum on the meth problem back in March, about the coming 1st Dec march in O¯ taki. Organised by Rawiro Barriball, Stacey Raika and Hohepa Rikihana it is intended to highlight meth and its associated mental health problems. It starts at 10am with a gathering at the corner of Mill Rd and SH1. Marchers are advised to use the footpath.
It’s known that as the Xmas holiday period comes upon us the pressure of household expenditure bears upon many and the police find themselves having to deal with a spike in domestic incidents. Be kind and look after the family and your neighbours.
■ Follow my mayoral appointments via my Instagram at @mayor — guru
Ka¯ piti Music Centre’s end of year concert.