Large swathes of my past are totally disconnected from the present. There are no people, no buildings, no businesses, that thread their way through time, back to when my life had a future.
QEC is totally different. Gone is the two-storied block of classrooms out the front, gone are the tennis courts, gone are the bike sheds… and, to a scruffy middle-aged man, it is not an inviting place to go and reminisce.
Pierard’s Plumbling was just down the road – not only is there no trace of this once-thriving business, local DJ Gerhard Pierard blasting down Rangitikei Line on his Laverda (3C, Jota?) seems like a dream.
What about the pubs? The Family Tavern, with it’s log-lined lounge bar and booths, on the corner of Rangitikei and Featherston is now a MacDonalds.
The Commercial Hotel on The Square, where we listened to Woodwind and where Jesse Kokaua and I later did a mean version of “Light My Fire”, with Jesse on Congas…. is totally erased.
We went to see Split Enz at the Municipal Opera House, which is now The Farmers Dept Store.
Priscilla used to work at the Dept of Social Welfare in Queen Street. I used to work as a storeman at Motor Traders.
The Japanese Bath House is now a restaurant.
Tim Gibbes Yamaha is now Anza, Pink and Collisons is long gone, as is its successor, Co-op Honda.
The streets are different, the bridge has changed, the buildings have disappeared, the businesses have faded, the people are gone. It never happened.