Friday, August 9, 2013

Favourite places: Massey campus

I work on the most beautiful campus in New Zealand. Bruce tells me the campus is so beautiful because it was planted by plant specialists rather than park specialists. This means it  is full of unusual established plants - both natives and imported varieties. Every season has its own loveliness here. In spring the place is a blaze  of blossom and the sweet scents of native bushes; in summer it has a remarkable lush greenness; in autumn the colours are ever changing; in winter the big trees are stretched out starkly against a clear winter sky.

                                          the only time in ever snowed in Palmerston North - August 2011

Because I have been a student or worked here since 1978, I've grown up with some of these trees. My memories are part of this place. My children have run through the gardens, the arboretum, have boogy-boarded down and played pooh-sticks in the Turitea stream. Our various dogs have run through the bush here and swum in the stream.

                                          Emily, Lizzy, Finn and Harris play pooh sticks

                                                    Rose, Ed and Ben in the Turitea stream

Whatever I'm feeling about the politics of working in a university, whatever the day will bring, as I drive into Massey in the morning through the avenue of plane trees, I always feel the delight: I work in this lovely garden,and in some ways it is mine.

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