I apologise in advance if anyone does not feel comfortable around cemeteries. But here today I have a fence too special to not be featured. It was built around the church and graveyard at the Waimate North Mission in 1878 and is made from totara, a lovely native tree. Fences around graveyards are part of Maori tradition.
The above is looking right from the lynch-gate. The next is looking left. You will notice to the left of the lynch-gate the fence has the modern addition of a water tap (underneath 'Water' it specifies not for drinking). In days gone by there would have been a bowl of water of some description. A Maori cemetery is one of the most tapu (be sacred, prohibited, restricted) places in all of Maori society. No eating, drinking or smoking is permitted within its boundaries since those activities are noa (the antithesis of tapu). People leaving the urupa (burial ground) are expected to wash their hands with water and sprinkle some on their heads, to reduce the tapu to the safe state of noa.
Here the fence separates the graves from a neighbouring paddock.
I imagine this fence would once have been very grand. You can see the perimeter fence in the background to the right.
Next door to the churchyard a similar styled fence protects the little blacksmith's cottage (I think that's what it was) from the paddock behind.
If you are interested in Maori customs surrounding death go to this site. It explains well the customs practised here in the north and is my go to site when I need help to understand why things are done in a certain way.
I have no idea why there are different fonts appearing in this post. One of Blogger's little mysteries.
I'll be linking to Good Fences and this weekend really will be around to visit other contributors.