Posted by & filed under Travel Country: New Zealand.


After I’d been to the i-site, I went into the Canterbury Museum to use the loos and unexpectedly, I came across an exhibition with some of the best costumes of the World of Wearable Art show there. The exhibition was called “Off The Wall” and was on from 2 December 2011 to 18 March 2012. Having been to the show in 2009 and loved it, I had to go and have a look. God, some of the outfits are fabulous. In the Illuminated Illusion section of the show, my favourite outfit was The Wanderer. It was an outfit shaped and coloured like a butterfly. It’s absolutely beautiful and they way they revealed it in the show, with all the lights off, the colour and shape of the outfit came to life in the ultraviolet lights on stage.

The story behind The Wanderer is that in North American Indian myth, if you tell a butterfly a wish, it will keep your secret (because it doesn’t speak). It will pass your wish on to the Great Spirit, who will then grant your wish because you released the butterfly. I took a photo of it and it was great to be able to do this because during the show, that wasn’t allowed.

I wanted to go to the Busker’s Festival, so I got on the bus at the station and when I was getting off, this girl with a Busker’s Festival badge on, walked with me to show me the way there. It was on in Hagley Park. This festival has been going on for the last nineteen years. Because of the earthquake in February, this was the first time it was held in the park. In previous years, the night time shows have been held in various venues such as the Casino and the Arts Centre and in the daytime, the buskers used to perform on the streets, especially Colombo Street, which is all damaged now.

In Hagley Park, there were performances in two main areas, some out in the open on stages and some in covered domes.The festival this year especially, was a welcome relief from the hardships of the earthquakes. Also because of the lack of music venues, due to earthquake damage, there weren’t so many events going on in the city. At least that was the case in January this year. So when festivals like this are on, then it gets really busy because everybody wants to go and have fun there.

When I heard it was a Busker’s Festival, I thought it was going to be musical buskers but it wasn’t, it was street shows, like circus acts, magicians and comedians. The night time shows are adult rated performances, all of them stand up comedy performances and I wanted to see one of those shows, if I could, while I was here. For the evening shows, they ask for a 10 NZD donation, which people are happy to pay. The day time shows are free. When I got there, the Wauwau Sisters were on.

They were performing on an open stage. They were American and during the show, they brought two guys from the audience up on stage, dressed them up in skirts and wigs and did a few acrobatic acts. Shep Huntly, another American comedian was on after that. He got the kids involved with his tricks. They were both ok only, not the best I’ve seen, but it was something different. Apparently the Christchurch Busker’s Festival on one of the biggest in the world and buskers have been known to wait five years to get to take part in it.

I wanted to go to Akaroa, a town on the Banks peninsula, an hour and a half’s drive from Christchurch. Akaroa is the only French settlement in the country but was first settled by Maori around seven or eight hundred years ago. There were two companies that I could chose from that go to Akaroa: Akaroa Scenic Tours & Shuttle or the French Connection. Both offer similar tours but one left a little bit later than the other, so I plumped for that one, which was Akaroa Scenic Tours and would cost 60 NZD. So I had to make that decision that evening after I got back from town and I decided I’d go there on Wednesday.