Rory Gardiner's Webpage

14, Jun, 2009

14th June 2009


What an amazing weekend.  What an amazing community.  When we moved from Whangarei to Dargaville three years ago many people couldn't understand our decision.  Dargaville is a small rural town largely untouched by the increased level of development seen on the east coast of Northland.  It is an old fashioned kiwi town and we love it.  It is the kind of environment Sean and I wanted to bring our boys up in.  Since Rory's illness the people of the Kaipara have shown us a strong sense of community, compassion, generosity, and selflessness.  It has made it easier for us all to face each day.  We know we are not alone.

The Kina Cut organised by the wonderful, and now bald, Trudi Johnston was a huge success.  You can read about it on the home/front page.  We were blown away by the number of people who were there, how people were prepared to climb up on stage and have their heads shaved, and how they were prepared to donate to help Rory's fight.  We spent a very enjoyable two hours in the Dargaville main street.  We were particularly touched by; Rory's friend Zac's steadfast attitude to getting his head shaved.  Even though he is only 8 years old no one was going to stop him being a starter (he managed to keep his rats tail!), Trudi and Tahlia parting with their ladies locks, and Rory not wanting anyone to shave his dad's hair but him.  He has subsequently told Sean he doesn't like his bald head and wants him to grow it back pronto.  Also Jason the owner of Hunting and Fishing donating beanies to all those who were shorn, and Mayor Neil Tiller keeping Rory company on the stage.  Rory was happiest on the day with his mates Korie and Kody.  He trusts these two boys implicitly, and I think feels his old self in their company.  He was also thrilled to see Grannie Gardiner, his second mother, and the matriarch who is the rock in our lives. 

At the end of the day we retired to Katherine's for a cup of tea, a piece of carrot cake which she had bought at the cake stall (and was delicious), and to count the proceeds.  A whopping $3759.90 was raised on the day, and there was also a cheque for $400 raised by Dargaville Intermediate on their mufti day for Rory.  I was speechless.  What is there to say?  I still can't get my head around what was achieved.  Sean and I have always worked hard to earn what we have, and it has never been in the magnitude of what we counted on Saturday.  It is hard accepting people's kind and generous donations. Thank you never seems enough. 

We also enjoyed attending Sam's soccer on Saturday morning, they won 7-0, and walking around Lake Kai Iwi for the first time on Sunday afternoon.  Winter at the lakes is a really special time.  It is isolated, wild, quiet, and devoid of people.  You really feel the magic in the air.  The boys were thrilled to spot a juvenile rat in a manuka tree just above their heads, and wanted Sean to catch it.  Unfortunately he couldn't perform!