THE EDITOR’S TRIP TO WELLINGTON
From the September 1939 issue of “TUNE IN”
As the story of the editor’s trip to Wellington may interest “Tune In’s” readers “Nosey” will endeavour to describe it to the best of his ability.
Before going any further, maybe those RA members who have never had the misfortune to meet Alf. Greenway, may like to know what he looks like, so here is a pen picture of him. He is between 20 and 40 years of age, about 5 or 6 feet in height; weighs something between 8 and 12 stone; isn’t a scrap like Clark Gable, and doesn’t wear a hat (he lost it a few years ago in Dunedin, so joined the hatless brigade.) A fuller description and a photograph could probably be seen at any Police Station.
Well, here goes for his Wellington trip. Arriving at Christchurch en route, he was collected by Des. Johnson who whisked him away for a glass of milk — devil’s milk. Then to tea at Des’s where they were joined by President Norm. Manchester. Engrossed in chinwag they didn’t tear themselves away until after the boat train had left. Norm. dashed off in search of a taxi, into which he chucked Greenfly, er, Greenway, I mean and then there was a mad dash to Lyttleton and Alf just tumbled on to the boat in time.
Arrived in Wellington and Gordon Grant met him and took him home. Mrs. Grant had previously taken the wise precaution of locking up all the valuables. After breakfast and a tidy-up, they were due back in town at l0.30 a.m. to meet Bert Henry. They arrived punctually, at ll.10 a.m. but Bert didn’t mind waiting — says he is used to it where Alf is concerned, and he had brought a camp stool along with him, anyway. During the day calls were made on Merv. Kelly and Wyn Billings. Wyn had a couple of bottles of limejuice! which Bert and Alf soon made a mess of. That afternoon Alf, Bert and Merv. successfully disposed of the object of Alf’s trip to Wellington, namely an attempt to obtain space for the N.Z. DX R.A. in the new Government publication “The Listener”. The deputation received an excellent hearing and Alf came away a very happy man. Dinner at Merv. Kelly’s home followed. Here Jock Geddes (remember him, Christchurch?) joined up and he, Merv. and Alf had to make a 5 mile taxi dash to attend a Committee meeting of the Wgtn. Branch, arriving half an hour late.
Next day, Wyn took Alf and Gordon for a sight seeing motor trip. A.E.G. expressed a wish to see Wellington’s Chinatown — Haining Street. Maybe he wanted to mark a pak-a-poo ticket, however, the car didn’t stop long enough for that. None of the Wellington members were sighted in Haining Street — they usually don’t go there till after dark when there’s less chance of being seen.
After the car ride Gordon took the hero of our tale to see a rugby match between trammies. The sight of the football made him feel quite youthful and a desire to kick the ball made him try to catch it once when it went over the side line. Unfortunately for Alf, another chap also had the same idea — a collision resulted and our Alf hit the ground with such a wallop that he saw stars. However, when picked up he was none the worse for wear, except for a rather muddy appearance, Vice-President Beauchamp was playing in this game. He had been training for it for about 3 months and has got his weight down to a bare 17 stone.
That night, Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Grant took the lad by the hand and led him round to spend the evening at President Beauchamp’s residence. The Beechys were dismayed at their guests appetite for pickled onions!
Next day Alf arose from bed at his usual time, mid-day and in the afternoon he and Bert called on several of the local lads. They collected Merv. Kelly at 5 o’clock and the three of them adjourned to an adjacent hostelry for final pow-wow. 6 o’clock found then on the pavement again, still conscious. During dinner at a restaurant the little waitress remarked that she came from Dunedin whereupon Alf told her that that explained why she was the prettiest girl he had seen in Wellington. Bit of a lad with the girls — this Greenbottle, I mean Greenway.
Although the night was dark and stormy, seven Wellingtonians gathered on the wharf to make sure that A.E.G. sailed. Mrs. Beechy and Mrs Merv. K. insisted on kissing Greenroom, or whatever his name is, goodbye, whereupon Jock disgustedly remarked that he didn’t know what they could see in him. At this stage Bert and Beechy had to forcibly restrain Merv. and Gordon from chucking Alf into the “big drink”. After looking hopefully round the wharf to see if any more ladies had designs on him, the editor went aboard the ship. At the last minute he attempted to clamber back to the wharf but Bert with murder in his eyes said “he doesn’t get off that boat if I know anything about it.” And so, blowing kisses, and with tears in his eyes, Alf sailed away. After satisfying themselves that he hadn’t sneaked back on, to the wharf, the Wellingtonians returned home to a peace they hadn’t known for three days.