With plans to meet for lunch at an establishment called “Brew’d”, it was obvious that beer was involved. Not a brewery, as I thought, but a bar specialising in serving boutique brewed beers. It was Rex’s turn to organise our monthly SLG get-together, and he was keen to take us there to try it out. This art deco looking building on the corner of Boulcott and High Streets just across the road from Hutt Hospital had previously seen life as the rather posh Timothy’s Restaurant, and then became Mr India for some time.
The interior would have to be called “distressed”, a mixture of rough concrete, exposed rafters, patchy walls, and large posters. We noticed that the doors and windows were finished with picture framing, and the wall by our table had quite an eclectic display of metal trays on display – obviously not the best family silver! The meals were tasty, and snitzel, Spanish omelettes, fish and chips, and Caesar Salad were all delivered to our table. Robin enjoyed sipping his Founders IPA beer, while Les and Rex enjoyed a Carlsberg each. The ladies were happy with their choice of tea or coffee.
After lunch, our next port of call was the Dowse Art Museum for a bit of culture.
Just inside the main door was a pair of beautifully carved panels (poupou), carved by Rangi Hetet to mark the 5th anniversary of the museum. The upper figure represents Chief Te Puni, who welcomed the first organised arrival of settlers in New Zealand when they landed in Petone. The lower figure represents a woman holding out branches of friendship to welcome strangers, symbolising friendship between Maori and Pakeha.
The main exhibition transported us back into the 70s with a mixture of clothing. I wasn’t a fashion icon in the 70s by any means, my life was busy with two young children and a full time job. Poor old Rex was discovered nodding off in the middle of one of the displays – he was so tired he didn’t even know I was taking his photo.
Les found the adjacent children’s activity area irresistible, and tried his hand giving us a bit of a show. He couldn't find Punch anywhere, so made do with the dolly instead
There were various other displays downstairs, and Karl Maughan’s Hydrangeas had a gallery to itself. This large colourful oil painting must have been at least 20ft long and just glowed with colour.
Our day finished as we sat down to sip a coffee at the Dowse Cafe, finish catching up with everyone’s news, before heading off to our respective homes. Thanks to Rex for organising a pleasant laid-back SLG day out.