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Nelson Branch Newsletter No. 8 – September 2017


The full pdf version of this newsletter is at Nelson Branch Newsletter September 2017

September Meeting

Meeting the Youth

Friday, September 29

Jaycee Room, Founders Park, 5:30 p.m.

An evening of fun and games, companionship, language and cultural exploration. Your choice.

Students from NMIT and NCC Youth Councillors are being invited to join us for this meeting which is intended to help us get to know the students present in our city.

This meeting will consist of activities to initiate and promote conversation and enjoyment.

Some of the Chinese students will tell their stories, and the activities will give opportunities for international students to experience and practise English in a social environment. It may also give those of us who wish it, a chance to brush up on Mandarin!

MLAs Sophie and Annie will be there with some ideas for games to involve all.. There will be plenty of opportunity to chat and get to know the young people.

NOTE: this meeting is not at Hearing House. 

Although in a different venue, this does include our usual meeting at 5.30 and and meal ($12)at 6 pm. You are welcome to bring friends, but please register numbers and names with Barbara Markland.

Instructions for the meeting at Jaycee Room, Founders Park – The access gate off the Atawhai Drive parking area will be open until 5:30 for those who wish to drive in to the venue. Pass through the gateway, keep the church on the left and go LEFT at the junction, into Levien Way. At the end of this street is Baigent Square, an open area where we can park in front of the railway station. You will have passed the Jaycee Room on the right, at the intersection of Levien Way and Snodgrass Street.

Founders prefers users to park in the Atawhai Drive carpark and to walk to the venue, using the small gate by the windmill if the vehicle gate is closed.

If you need help to find the venue, or need the gate opened for you, PLEASE call Ferry (022 079 0093).

New members – We give a warm welcome to Brian and Averil Kepple.

August meeting: SHOW AND TELL

The usual large crowd enjoyed viewing members’ Chinese treasures and hearing the stories associated with them. There seems to be many more treasures around for a future meeting. Jifang Black took some photographs at the meeting. Sally Warren displayed on the long tables an interesting looong picture of the Yangtze River from its source in Tanggula Mountain to its mouth at Shanghai.

Margaret Miller told some stories of her family trip to China in 1967 when they had a series of unexpected railway adventures. Her treasures are hundreds of coloured slides, some of which were transferred to an electronic slide show. Margaret’s son Rick, who was 6 at the time, showed the leather school bag which he took on the trip, and the red flag which he waved throughout the journey.



Barbara Markland bought this beautiful blue and white porcelain bowl from a hawker on the sidewalk in Shanghai in 1996. It is a famous pattern ‘Hundred Children’ and is always on the Markland’s dining table.

Wendy Canning was born in Hong Kong and was interned by the Japanese there when she was 3. Children were brought food by local Chinese including Lucy Pze.. Many years later, on one of her visits to Hong Kong, Wendy met Lucy again. Lucy gave Wendy this precious antique jade butterfly buckle which had belonged to her grandfather.

Lori Brudvik-Lindner has two precious treasures from China – her daughters Wren and Lark. But what she showed was her ‘mandarin spectacles’..These were used by officials in pre-revolution days, not as reading glasses, but to cover their eyes so the lower ranks could not see their reactions.

Aukje Both showed the backpack used when she and Ferry were travelling all over China in their time off from teaching at the university in Zhangye. People called out ‘bag lady’ but it gave very good service, even better, perhaps, after being strongly repaired by a sidewalk machinist.

Christine Ward’s treasure was an album of photographs presented as a record of a couple of days spent in Nanjing. While Christine was giving a seminar, Bruce Ward and Kathy Beatson were taken on a tour of the sights. The album is a treasured memory of the time in China with Kathy.

David Dai named his home-town Xiangtang as his treasure. He showed a video he made of people there enjoying chewing areca (betel) nuts which is something the town is famous for.


Jane Lister showed several treasures, but said the best one is Maxine Wong (pictured). Maxine met the Listers in Hangzhou in 2014 when she was showing them the sights. She has since graduated from NMIT and works there as an assistant tutor.

Alvin Schroder has a carved Chinese walking stick which extends into a fishing rod. It was brought back to New Zealand by a relative of his wife who had lived in China in the 1950s.  The lovely carvings show a range of Chinese symbols.


From Nelson Executive, September

NCC: Huangshi Chinese Garden has been booked for the garden party Sunday 26 October.

Lori advised 8-10 people are expected to attend the book club discussion September 3, 2:30 p.m. at Volume Books.

September 29 Meeting: Members will pay the usual $12 for their meals and those for guests will be paid by the branch as hosts. Chinese tea will be served.

October 29: Garden party.

Sister City: There has been no further information regarding the delegation visits to Huangshi and Yangjiang.

As extra funding is available to allow liaison with Yangjiang the branch will ask to be informed about events so a contribution to the relationship can be made.

It is hoped that, as a consequence of a branch representative visiting Yangjiang, there can be further contact with the city and perhaps relationships formed eg with a school or educational institution.

China Week: The official opening will be Tuesday November 7. A branch presence will be required.

Art Exhibition: The paintings and Rewi Alley exhibition will be at the Italian Club in Trafalgar Street. A small sub-committee will organise the launch on Monday 6 November at 6 p.m.

A roster of members will be needed to ensure the exhibition is supervised each day.

Handcrafts Tour – The 2015 visit to New Zealand, including Nelson, of three women from handcraft co-operatives in north-west China created interest which led to the development of a handcrafts focussed tour from New Zealand to China. The first such tour is planned for April 2018.

The tour will visit co-operatives and workshops which will include embroidery, weaving, clay figurines, farmers painting (folk art), cloisonné, tie-dying, Dongba characters (ancient ‘hieroglyphic’ writing), paper cutting, straw pictures, … and the chance to get involved in some hands-on craft work.

For more information e-mail [email protected] or get the itinerary from https://nzchinasociety.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Handcrafts-itinerary.pdf

From other branches – A Dunedin branch member has recently been on a cycling adventure in Tibet. After a week getting acclimatised, the group with Tibetan support crew, spent three weeks cycling nearly 800 km and driving hundreds more. Much of this was on the ‘Friendship Highway’, a scenic route that travels 800 km from Lhasa to the China/Nepal border. See more in the latest Dunedin branch newsletter.

The same newsletter has a report on a talk to members about the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). At the end of the report is a link to an article with trenchant comment on the Australian Government response to the “world’s greatest infrastructure project”. There is interesting reading in both.

Wellington branch newsletter has news about the launch of ‘Lotus Roots’, an art exhibition discussing experiences and perceptions of Chinese culture in New Zealand. The exhibition is at Wellington Museum, 3 Jervois Quay (not Te Papa).

The origin of ‘gung-ho’ – Kirstie Ross of Te Papa has an article in the Te Papa blog related to Rewi Alley and the origin of the term ‘gung-ho’. http://blog.tepapa.govt.nz/2017/04/21/the-expat-origins-of-gung-ho-rewi-alley-a-new-zealander-in-china/