It’s coming up to silly season again when the symbiotic relationship between holiday makers and Russell’s economy hopefully reaches its potential. Locals become good ambassadors guiding tourists to our historic spots, appropriate shops, restaurants and galleries. Russell has always been a tourist town; if the notebook of sayings kept by James and Pauline Yearbury of the Colonial Gallery (1967-1976) is anything to go by, things may not have changed much.
- Young couple from across the street to another young couple peering through window, “Are they open?” “Nah! There’s a lady in there but the old &#@*% won’t open up!”
- “I think your designs are just lovely dear. Have you ever thought of getting them printed on tea towels?”
- Tourist who has come over from Paihia by launch, “Are we still in Noo Zealand ma’am”?
- Triumphant gent seeing initials on wood panel, “There you are J-P-Y” – Made in Japan.
- Looking at panels, “My word, aren’t these Maoris clever with their hands”.
- While gallery was closed, “They shouldn’t have places like this unless they’re prepared to open to the public.”
- “Don’t go in there, it’s only art.”
I wonder what this summer will bring. Are you keeping a notebook?