Te Maika – 5

Oh darn… again… I thought I had it sorted … I’ve tried all sorts of categories, tags, menu options… and still I don’t have my menu items coming up correctly… of well… so long as you can find Te Maika 1 – 5 somewhere! (Well, you’ve obviously found 5 cos this is it!)

Back to our bach… my brothers slept in the bunk room and my parents and I slept in the three single beds in the other ‘bedroom’ – a bed space in the living area which we curtained off at night.  I loved going to sleep listening to my mum and dad talking quietly as they played cards or discussed any number of topics  – I couldn’t recall one conversation but the hum of their voices was like music sending me to sleep.

Cooking, as I mentioned, was done on a wood-burning stove on occasion but more frequently on a Primus – a kerosene-fueled cookers set in action by a small bowl of burning meths.  It was “graduation day” for sure when I was permitted to light this by myself! The primuses have long since been “promoted” to a top shelf in the bach reserved for relics of the past! We now cook with gas.

I was about to mention the topic of toilets… In our days of renting baches I vaguely remember having to wander outside and down behind the baches to little outhouses with some sort of seat (or hole in a big board) over deep holes in the ground. Never somewhere we really desired to spend time but necessary anyway.  But then came our own “long drop”.  I can’t remember a “long drop” so I don’t know if there was ever one there.  I do remember the outhouse well, though… a tiny tin shack which contained – no, not a hole dug in the ground, but a bucket… a large paint bucket! On top of this bucket sat a toilet seat… I seriously think a long drop was preferable! Once this bucket was filled to a certain depth my father would dig a hole nearby (but not too close!) and empty the contents before filling the hole and preparing the bucket for its use again.

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That’s our bach in the distant centre.

 

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The baches of the bay.
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Our bay (Cable Bay) from the hill above our bach showing the mouth of Kawhia Harbour and Beacon Rock on the left.

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Eventually the paint bucket was replaced with a portable toilet (or port-a-potty) which made the excavation process slightly less yucky but the emptying procedure remained the same. And that’s enough about that… for now!

In part 6 I will take a different direction and tell you about Julie-Ann…

 

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