Rotorua, New Zealand,22 October, 2003
Today I met Tini Glover at his home in Gisborne. What a hard man! Great fun, wicked sense of humour, but I wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of him! I know the Maori are martial people, but Tini has evidently lived his life by deciding whether he trusts people or not, and if he doesn’t, watch out. His memory was great but he jumped around quite a lot. One minute he was telling me about some story from the war, the next he was describing some disagreement he’d had nearby over some use of Maori land. â€˜So I grabbed this joker by the neck,’ said Tini, â€˜and told him never again to talk to me like that again. You should have seen him: his eyes were bulging out and everything. I really could have throttled him.’ So when was this? I asked. Back in the war. â€˜Ah, no – this was a couple of weeks back.’ I’m going to enjoy writing about him.
Afterwards, I headed back to Rotorua, driving along an almost entirely empty road for a hundred miles or so. Stunning scenery and all in all, quite an experience.