Merville’s Life-Cont’d

Soon Came The Next Phase Of Merville’s Life It was now 1945 and Merville and Iris continued happily working in Dunedin’s George Street. Mum thinks the place was called The Red Cafe but wasn’t sure. It was a big restaurant open five days a week. Iris was a cook and Mum the kitchen maid, waitressing if required. “Olive Hicks used to work one day a week in the kitchen so Iris and I became good friends with her. She used … Continue reading

Merville & The Crown Range

Merville & The Crown Range For as long as I can remember, we’ve heard stories about Mum’s bike ride across the Crown Range in Central Otago. Encouraged to tell the story many times and with a different emphasis with almost every telling, I think the three of us were always in awe of our mother for doing such an amazing thing. It was always great to hear her laughing at the memory. “In 1944 we didn’t go back to Motueka … Continue reading

Time At Pangatotara

Time At Pangatotara Merville’s time at the tobacco farms at Pangatotara where filled with long days, hard work and what sounds like a lot of fun in what Mum remembers as “beautiful weather”. Her and Iris worked the tobacco from spring to autumn for two years. During the tobacco “off season” they found casual work on farms around the Nelson/Marlborough area. Mum did go back to Winton once each year to visit her mother. Work began in the spring with … Continue reading

Merville’s Wartime Job

Merville’s Wartime Job In Tobacco Fields My mother Merville, contributed to the war effort in a way that would be frowned upon today, but during World War Two tobacco played such a huge role in providing support to those serving overseas. And to the community at home as well. Merville and Iris began their wartime work when they arrived in Motueka in the spring of 1942. Mum has always recalled the war years as being a very enjoyable time of … Continue reading

Taglines & Loglines

Taglines and Loglines Over the past couple of days I’ve been playing around with taglines and loglines for my next new release “Impossible Liaison”. Rather than risk getting it wrong, I resorted to good old Google to help me out with differentiating between the two. According to the first option which popped up: A “logline” is a (movie’s) concept boiled down to one or two sentences. A “tagline” is a short, clever one-off found on a movie’s poster. I saw … Continue reading

Merville’s Story

Continuing Merville’s Story My grandfather James (Chum) Robertson died 30 July 1940. He was only 62. Merville’s words continue – “We went south to the funeral but I don’t remember much about it as I had to go back to Dunedin to my job. That was in the July and about November our mother had the shingles. Ina had her in bed at her home but I left my job and went south to look after her. She came back … Continue reading

Wonderful Southland

Wonderful Southland Is A Great Place To Be Don’t believe all you hear about a place, that’s my advice after I spent another visit to wonderful Southland waiting for the rain that was forecast almost every day. Instead I experienced great autumn weather, sunny skies, warm temperatures and a definite lack of rain, except for two days. I was lucky to see a couple of amazing sunrises while I stayed in Winton, but this one was the most spectacular. I … Continue reading

Photos Of Family Farm

The Family Farm Has Changed On a recent visit to Winton and my mother, I decided I wanted a photo of the farm where she grew up. Three or four times I drove up and down Gap Road looking for something that looked vaguely familiar. I knew the original house had long gone and been replaced – I assumed – with a modern building but I expected to be able to identify the lie of the land and know, yep, … Continue reading

Meeting Character

Meeting Character How thrilling it was meeting my fictional character in real life. I’ve never imagined I would be so lucky as to have an actual person to model a character on. Especially after I had completed writing the book he appears in. On my recent return back to Auckland after visiting my mother in Southland, I noticed a man boarding the plane in Invercargill with very long dreaded hair. The male character in my latest story, tentatively entitled “Return … Continue reading

Merville Mentioned

Finally Found Merville Mentioned It feels like I have searched forever for some newspaper report with Merville mentioned, but always to no avail. This small French town had yet to appear in any WWI report I’d managed to track down. Have you ever done something that is quite outside your normal actions and wondered why on earth you did? That happened to me last week. I never thought about it being something unusual for me until my husband commented on … Continue reading