There’s this one line in Bad Jelly and the Witch that never fails to make me snort with laughter. You know the one where Dulboot gets sent off to ‘bare bottom land’.
Yesterday, Catherine the Duchess of Cambridge must have thought she’d suffered the same fate when she arrived in a damp and squidgey Wellington and was greeted by a big Maori fella and his ahem, bare bottom!
Welcome to New Zealand!
Of course perhaps Wills should have briefed her that the members of the Defense force Kapa Haka group will be wearing the briefest of briefs. In fact, whilst some members of the media have dubbed the bum floss ‘a black thong’ I think that’s over-stating it. Certainly Kate thought so. Is that a twinkle in her eye?
The cheeky delight taken in the pic that’s bubbled around the world comes only a day after UK media reported a Maori ‘expert’ who suggested that typically the women would be bare breasted and the men naked under their piupiu. He was of course taking the piss as we funny ole Kiwis are wont to do.
There wasn’t a bare breast in sight, thankfully as it was nipple stiffeningly cold and wet, though there was plenty of cheek!
And that’s how it is in New Zealand. We don’t run around nekkid all the time but there is a definite air of casualness here. We, the locals, like to think of it as a naturalness that is sadly missing overseas. I know I suffered from culture shock when I arrived in England and was told that bare feet meant at best poverty, and at worst crazyness. And oh, please don’t mention the Plimsoll experience.
It’s a good thing that we started the NZ leg of the Royals’ trip with a sharp dive in the deep end. As if to say – we’re cheeky down here. We’re natural and proud of our land and peoples and we don’t take ourselves (or anything else for that matter) too seriously.
New Zealand is a no bs standing-on-ceremony zone.
Welcome Wills and Kate. Kick off your shoes and make oneself at home.