Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Nostalgia for the Present

In these final weeks in my little Antarctic hometown of Dunedin, I've been trying to take in as much of the glorious architecture as possible. This isn't just something I do when I'm leaving, like a lover who is only attentive when there's been a fight, but something I always do. When I was a child, my favourite activity was Sunday 'drives' with Mom, with the hope of coming across open homes. Usually we would mock the homes, and the inhabitants (after leaving of course!), but occasionally we found real gems and would construct elabourate fantasies about what our lives might be like if we lived there.

Now, people will tell you that a home will not change your life. I've lived in all kinds of homes, and I'm here to tell you that's not simply not true. A home has an indelible effect on your character, and vice versa. But more vice. This home belongs to a rather private man, whose name I will not mention for that reason, but I will say that I once bought a fantastic brown station wagon off him and more importantly, I've many times purchased his home hot-smoked salmon. It is the best salmon in the world. I say this without reservation, as it would be completely impossible for there to be a better food than this salmon. It only goes for sale when he happens to have some, and I am known to throw previous financial plans (ha!) to the wind in order to purchase a kilo of it. As a result of this, once while living in a fridge on Warden Street, Anthony and I had (in the way of food stuffs) a grand total of:

  • 3 casks of red wine (kindly given to Anthony for his birthday from 3 friends who know him all too well).
  • 1 Kilo of hot-smoked salmon.
I called my Mom in a starved, drunk panic "Mom, can we come to dinner? And can you pay for the petrol? All we have to eat is wine and salmon."

The strange wooden room above used to be a bathroom - and apparently someone was once murdered in it.

Where the magic happens - the hot smoking salmon room (above).

Kilos of the pink gold! At this point I am almost tearing open those packages with my bare hands.

Mr. White. I think I can safely say that "Mr. White" is the owner's favourite creature of any description to ever live. And I can see why!

Ever-adorable Katherine.

A neat little stack of art works on the veranda. The owner tells me: "all the art is in this house is by my friends."

And below, the scene of a raging party the night previous.

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