Smoke Signals

Smoke Signals are remarks and observations that range from the serious to the sarcastic. Typically anonymous, these quips capture the community's notes on life and events in the Cooks, or what's echoing over the Coconut Wireless. Smoke Signals and interesting island photos can be sent by email ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or text to 188, or call the newsroom on 22999.


Monday April 03, 2017

Fooled about stairs

What a great April Fools Day story regarding the green stairway at the courthouse.


Sunday April 02, 2017

Rowdy party buses and traffic taking away our peace

I admire the New Zealand government for not allowing electric bikes to spoil the beauty and serenity of the peaceful Tongariro National Park, a smoke signaller says.

Carved archway wonderful work

Thursday March 30, 2017

Heartfelt thanks to Mike and Awhitia Tavioni for carving such a magnificent RSA memorial archway that takes my breath away each time I drive by.

Frequent customers of the Land Division of the Ministry of Justice may not be thrilled with the recently-announced decision to close the doors on Tuesdays while Land Division staff are in “training”, a smoke signaller observes.


Tuesday March 28, 2017

We’ve got to stop removing that sand

We’ve had large scale sand mining in Matavera and house-sized holes dug in Muri.

Clearly a lot of finger-pointing already going on with regard to the double murder/suicide in Vaimaanga …

Driver of the week

Thursday March 23, 2017

There are so many contenders for Driver of the Week, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for the smoke-signalling judge of the contest to make a decision. However, the winner – or winners, this time are the local pair on a motorbike who rode around the seawall on Sunday evening as it was getting dark, way, way over the speed limit – and with the headlight turned off. Oh, and there were no safety helmets in sight.

News that the Justice ministry is planning to pay new prison warden recruits even less than previously doesn’t bode well for any positive changes within the prison system, another smoke signaller says. “People who are underpaid, are far less likely to do a good job than those who are paid well and fairly. Commissioner of Police please take note.”

Legwork needed

Wednesday March 15, 2017

“Regarding the article in CI News about an abandoned car on the main road at Tupapa, police said they failed to reach the relatives of the car owner on number provided,” a smoke signaller says. “This is a small island, so why didn’t they just go and look for that person. Problem solved. I just hate all the silly comments they make in the newspaper.”

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