After finding out “all about Pesto” our SLG friends were in need of sustenance and a sit down. Just as well we had a table booked for lunch not too far away at Salt and Pepper Cafe. The staff must have heard that our group can sometimes get a little vocal, and seated us out on the covered deck. Which was very nice really, we were nice and private and had the deck to ourselves. We are not really that noisy, but when all of us get talking, the sound scale does go up a notch or two. What to order generally takes a bit of pondering, and discussion, and finally we had all decided what took our fancy. There was no second choice for Les, if lambs fry and bacon is on the menu, that’s what he is having – and he did! We were all pleased with our choices, with Robin and Calvin both ordering the most delicious pork belly open sandwiches.
We had one more visit to make after lunch, and I took our group to look through the Cordall factory, another small local business which manufactures cords, elastic, tape and bungy cords. The owner showed us around and related how the spools of cord get threaded up onto the machines and woven into these various products. The spindles go round and round at incredible speed, just like the Whirling Dervishes of olden times.
Shoe laces are another product and this old vintage machine came up from quake ridden Christchurch. It is the only one of it’s kind in the country and has a very important job – putting aglets on shoelaces. That’s what the plastic or metal sleeves at the end of shoelaces are called – aglets, or aiglets. These tiny things have several functions: they prevent the lace ends from fraying, they make the laces easier to hold, and they make them easier to pass through the eyelets. And that rather strange word often comes up in crossword puzzles, I’m told.
Another product made here is cord for electric fence gates which incorporates stainless steel wire. We watched as large spools of stainless steel wire were wound onto smaller spindles which will then be threaded up onto the machines to make the cord.
It was a very interesting short tour, and once again, our group of friends were not aware that this took place in Levin. Products are made to order, and any excess is sold in the shop. There are all sorts of elastic, cords and tape for the home sewer like me – it is a real delight to have such an interesting little shop on my doorstep. And I found exactly what I was looking for to complete a project.
Our friends came back to our home for afternoon tea and even more chatter before they all headed off on their journeys homeward. We had a great day together, and they were certainly surprised to learn of two quite different industries we have here in Levin.