Views on the streets of NZ

Tuesday August 11, 2020 Written by NZ Herald Published in Small World
Michelle Hight, left, shares a laugh with Leah Hawkins, who is holding her nine-week-old Elise in Martinborough. MIKE SCOTT / NZ HERALD 20081003 Michelle Hight, left, shares a laugh with Leah Hawkins, who is holding her nine-week-old Elise in Martinborough. MIKE SCOTT / NZ HERALD 20081003

Outside the Martinborough Hotel in the New Zealand province of Wairarapa, Leah Hawkins and Michelle Hight, and their daughters, are catching up.

Hight and her daughter Abby, 10, are visiting from Niue. Hight's journey to New Zealand was to celebrate her mother's 70th birthday – a three-week visit requiring two weeks isolation here and two weeks more when she returns.

“I'd always wondered how dangerous the world would be at any point I’d had a child,” says Hawkins. “It's scary but the world has gone through things. We always come out of it and adapt.”

“I think it's time to loosen the reins with a Pacific bubble for Niue and the Cook Islands.”

Decisions made in Wellington have impacts around the world. The travel restrictions bite into income, and also into life.

Hawkins was off to France this year, Hight to Argentina. “We're not going anywhere now,” says Hawkins.

“You can't get people from overseas to travel here, some because there's a cost for them to isolate. Some are Kiwis who were coming back here to get married.” – NZ Herald

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