March 20, 2014

A great day at Massey - memories of 40 years ago

Good old Palmy...
Back to Massey. I started there in 1975.
SO many memories. I wrote about a few here and added some pictures off the internet.
For the first time in 30 years I got to revisit the vet tower and check out the changes. A whistle stop tour lasting a mere four hours.... before the full expansion project is done.

It was a relief to see that some things hadn't changed even if I didn't recognise Palmerston North at all. Like the rest of the world, it was generally busier, more congested and there were a lot more girls hanging around the vet school than in the seventies! It was funny to see the other alumni there with me at the meeting were all feeling the same and we had a good laugh at memories of our time spent there.

Perhaps to me the most overwhelming thing was how big the trees had got. I don't think people believed me that they weren't there in my day. I had seen pictures of them, but actually being there was so different. My first reaction when I got to the third floor looking back over the campus was to check out the duck pond... the difference was so huge that only the fact there were duck and water looked the same - but the steady quacking was instantly familiar. Mind you I live on the banks of a wildlife reserve so I hear it a lot at home anyway!

These are the duck pond today as seen from the vet tower...

Looking over the foot bridges back to the rest of the campus

So I came home and dug out some photos....
This is how the vet tower looked in 1975
Trees?????? What trees???
My friends, 1975 in front of duck pond and the Vet Tower - as hopeful vet students in waiting

Looking over the bridge crossing to the tower
 I can see the newly planted trees in this picture below !!!

Sitting on the foot bridge - dreaming of getting accepted into vet school

My Hostel - Young hopefuls... 1975

Bubbles owned her own car!!!! and just look at the cars that were there...

Joint 21st with my flatmate Peter - no not an engagement! 

Pro Poofta Ball
Very sad last day of our flat 1979 with Jenny my Labrador front left... terrible pic, great people!

I am still in touch with three of those flatmates - now Dr Bruce - currently in Auckland,  and Dr Peter in Napier - both in forms of ag/hort research, and Dr Claire and I are both vets here in Christchurch.

For a variety of reasons I have been quite nostalgic this week all round.
Seeing myself again as a young hopeful 17 year old starting at Massey - priceless.


  1. How good that you still have the pictures from those days! I "do" a lot of nostalgia myself sometimes, and love revisiting my old "haunts", for instance the small town where I went to Librarian School in 1986-1988. How different life was then - no internet, no mobile phones, no CDs, no ebooks...

    1. But I guess we spent more time hanging out together and doing stuff??? I don't remember being bored at all.
      I have far too few pictures of those days - I guess film was expensive and photos a luxury, particularly on student money. Plenty of memories - and like many of the older generation, I appreciate hugely the freedom we had in not having to worry that every embarrassing moment might be captured and put on social media!!!

  2. What an amazing post Fiona. I'm always a bit afraid of nostalgia because I don't want to remember the things I disliked (like school) and Uni and post-grad for me were things I had to do not things I wanted to do. So my nostalgia is for entirely different things.

    If I had been female I think I would have loved to have been called Bubbles. I cannot think of a happier name.

    1. They were happy years....
      I expect you might remember the origin of the name Bubbles...
      As I recall she was really an Antoinette... which was unusual enough in itself. :)


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