Halswell Domain

Halswell Domain
View from the Model Engineers' site in the Halswell Domain

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The Happy Bicyclist and the Supermarket Problem

This post is in the spirit of always offering a Solution whenever there is a Complaint to be made. First, the Complaint. The Happy Bicyclist has been getting more and more irritated with the supermarket in Halswell - it's too hard to find stuff, the shop is full of strangers, and to get to the scanty, hidden - away bike rack requires navigating an enormous wilderness from roads infested with cars.

Today I tried a solution suggested by a friend. The first step was to turn Left at the front gate, instead of Right. Then through Oaklands and Westlake to Dunbars Road, over the bridge and onto the motorway cycle path. Turn off at the Aidanfield Drive overbridge onto Skyhawk Road's painted cycle lane for a couple of blocks. ..to The Landing in Wigram Skies. Straight up to the plentiful, modern bike racks, and in the door. The Happy Bicyclist still didn't know anyone, but at least the place felt smaller than a football field. And nice places next door for a coffee afterwards.

Going to a more distant supermarket requires more planning. Another Solution. A couple of weeks ago, J. attached her bike touring pannier bags for her bicycle visits to Healthy Harvest, and today I figured out that I could do the same for supermarket trips. Not exactly the boot of an SUV, but certainly enough to feel virtuous.

So, how often will we apply these Solutions? Probably not every time, but enough to ease the frustration that goes with powerlessness. And if we want to get really serious, we can always go see Steve Muir about a bike trailer.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Familiar Faces: Allan and Joyce Cleave

Allan and Joyce Cleave are familiar faces in Halswell in that they have lived here for 57 years and have been hugely involved in helping the Halswell community.
Allan and Joyce arrived in Halswell as in 1958 and lived in Checketts Avenue for 35 years. Halswell was considered a country area then and they built the house. When they arrived, there was one shop with a petrol bowser, St Mary's Anglican, the Catholic church and Oaklands school. They made good friends with their neighbours with whom they are still good friends today.

They raised four children here: daughters Linda and Eleanor and sons Bruce and Roger. Sadly, they have lived through the loss their daughter Eleanor who was taken with cancer at the age of thirty-nine and the death of one grandchild involved in a car accident at the age of nineteen. Bruce and Roger and families live in Halswell and Linda and her husband live in Rolleston and they have a total of ten grandchildren.
Allan worked for the railways for thirty years, delivered the mail for two and a half years in Halswell and then managed the Salvation Army thrift furniture and clothing shops with Joyce in Addington and Halswell. Joyce's ties with the Salvation army were early, as she was one of eleven children. When her father was killed, her mum turned to the Salvation Army for help.  Allan became involved when he wished to go out on a date with Joyce and she took him to church instead!

The list of their voluntary work positions is endless and includes cooking at 156 Salvation Army camps for children and teaching Sunday School for fifteen years. They also lead for three years, sang in church choirs, and held positions of leadership in the church for thirty-five years. voluntary work was with the Friends of Resthaven,  the Civil Defence and the police. They have also delivered meals for the Sallies and the Lions, of which Allan is also a member. For years, Allan organised the annual Red Shield Appeal and for over fifty years, he has delivered the Salvation Army magazine 'War Cry' to pubs.

Allan has won prestigious awards for his hours of community service including the Caltex Unsung Hero Award (2000) and the American worldwide Lions award: the Melvin Jones Fellow for dedicated humanitarian services. Allan will tell you that he has done everything with the blessing and full support of Joyce. “We did everything together,” says Joyce. When asked how they find the time to do all this, Joyce “Without the Lord's help we wouldn't have been able to do any of it.”

In the last few years, they have moved to a smaller home, closer to buses and the supermarket. Joyce says that while they have been very busy in their lives, they are enjoying taking things easier now and are taking family trips such as the one soon to Auckland to see a granddaughter. Joyce loves to point out her lovely array of family photos and is called Nana Joyce by her grandchildren but also by many of the local children. She loves to give out hugs and says “People need hugs; people need love.” Another indicator that their heart has always been about people. Joyce also enjoys cross stitching and has made huge tapestries. On her wall unit, there are traditionally decorated eggs and hand-painted porcelain ornaments. Joyce has been involved in craft groups in Halswell for years, and it is a source of great joy for her. And out and about, you might bump into Allan dropping the Salvation Army magazine in the pubs, collecting money for the Sallies outside Halswell New World, at the Lions club or being Father Christmas least two Halswell events.

On a final note, when asked what they thought of post-earthquake Halswell, they affirmed that they like living here, “It feels safe and the people are friendly.” They still go for walks and bump into people to chat to. Their advice for people new people moving into the area is “Get to know your neighbours.”

WORDS: Deb Harding-Browne