Kawakawa and disappointment
On our approach to the Bay of Islands I noted that we were to drive near Kawakawa.
As this was the infamous home of the Hundertwasser Toilets, I duly prodded the driver and requested (for his benefit of course) that we take a driving break in the locality of this tourist attraction.
I wish I hadn’t bothered.
What a sad little place. The tourists obviously flock in to see the colourful public toilets, which are really not that impressive, but there is very little else in the town to see and it appeared to me to be unkempt and untidy.
Sorry Kawakawa residents and fans. I tell it as I see it.
We didn’t know about the steam train that ran from Kawakawa (through the middle of the street) and this was the most pleasant surprise.
However; the station, the streets, the track, the pavements – were all untidy, overgrown with weeds and looking very sad and bedraggled.
The local shops were not very attractive. The grocery store was overpriced.
I eagerly anticipated my visit to the public toilets (and I don’t often say that) but I hoped that there was some saving grace to this little old coal-mining town.
I duly queued up amongst the other tourists to visit the public loos.
(I cannot actually believe I did that)
I picked up the brochure to read while I queued.
I read about the Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser who lived near Kawakawa and in 1998 with the help of the community transformed the town’s public toilets into a work of art.
I inwardly cringed when the girl in front of me rang a friend to inform them that she was “… waiting in line for the famous Kawakawa toilets! Like really… SQUEE!!”
Finally I got to enter the sacred building.
Sorry… I was getting a bit carried away with myself then…
I entered the public toilets, was surprised there were only two cubicles – although this would explain the queue, had a look around and decided I really could NOT bring myself to take photographs inside with other people there. Come on.. they are public toilet for heaven’s sake – it’s just not right!
However I did take one sneaky pic on my phone when inside the privacy of my own cubicle.
The rest are just a few from the exterior.
If you are a Hundertwasser fan, I apologise, however – I really don’t see what all the fuss is about.
Yes, they are fun. Yes they are colourful and no doubt unique but really just not THAT special.
Sorry guys, I guess we will have to agree to disagree on some things.