We are half way through the winter and here in Dunedin for the last several weeks we have had wonderfully warm and sunny weather during the day just cooling down a bit at nights. Unbelievably national TV admitted a couple times that Dunedin was the warmest spot in the whole of NZ. Unbelievably, because temperatures shown on TV and reported in the papers are ALWAYS several degrees lower than I can see with my own eyes on our outdoor thermometer. There are rumours that Dunedin temperatures are recorded in the dungeons and read during the late night’s ghost tours. Just to finish my hobbyhorse subject of temperatures in Dunedin please just look at my pictures. Have you seen more beautiful buganvilia outside of Mexico? and birds having to take cold showers and quenching thirst because of the heat? – this is our garden.
Every July in Dunedin is sweetened by the CADBURY’S CHOCOLATE CARNIVAL.
Dunedinites have been celebrating their love of chocolate for over 10 years, dedicating an annual carnival to the sweet treat.
But organisers have added a few surprises to this year’s programme, including a house that’s definitely good enough to eat. The chocolate house was one of the features of Dunedin’s Chocolate Carnival . A team from Otago Polytech had the challenge of building a life-size house and painting it with 90 litres of melted chocolate. “Quite difficult to keep it warm enough to be able to make it spread easily,” says chocolate carpenter Graham Burgess.
“But yeah, we had a lot of fun. Students kept an eye on things as well and were quite keen to taste bits and pieces as we went along. ”
The team’s also been designing a new machine to release the 25,000 giant Jaffas for their annual race down the world’s steepest street.
But the icing on the cake was the chocolate creations of English food sculptor Prudence Staite. Bored of working with stone while doing an art degree at university, she turned to chocolate.
“I’ve always been obsessed with food, and always obsessed with art, so pretty much I fused that together at the age of two,” says Staite.
She’s worked in the Cadbury factory for more than a week making chocolate sculptures and decorations to go in and around the chocolate house – everything from an edible fireplace to chocolate cushions.
Here short history of chocolate – Food of the Gods:
The origins of chocolate can be traced back to the ancient Mayan and Aztec civilisations in Central America. ‘Theobroma cacao’, meaning ‘food of the gods’, was prized for centuries by the Central American Mayan Indians, who first enjoyed a much-prized spicy drink called ‘chocolatl’, made from roasted cocoa beans.
The Aztecs introduced cocoa to the Spaniards, who took it back to Europe in the 16th century. However it was very expensive, so only the rich could afford it. Chocolate was exclusively for drinking until the early Victorian times when a technique for making solid ‘eating’ chocolate was devised.
August is going to be pretty hectic in Fletcher Lodge, we plan to paint the front of the house, carry on working on the second bedroom in the Sobieski Suite and carry on with landscaping our gardens. Hopefully, as most of my activities are outdoors, (painting and gardening) the weather will change for the worst, so I will not feel guilty by attending New Zealand International Film Festival.
Kia Ora from Dunedin
Ewa & Keith Rozecki-Pollard
Fletcher Lodge, Dunedin