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Opening of the Grafting Bridge.

$'* (By Our City Council Slanderer Who Wasn't There). fc ' '

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%$• f|*HE new Grafton Bridge was % ' I officially declared open last JV~ Thursday afternoon under |vi "most auspicious conditions. Very !,>"' complete arrangements had been ?t< made ior the occasion. The Mayor, ;V the members of the City Council, and j,H the other aristocrats present were <j£ provided with an elaborate dais, car--6 peted with red plush, and furnished |V with resplendent armchairs. The 3 masses were accommodated with the 4 j " centre of Symonds-street, where they !?»' were afforded a considerable amount t? * ol pleasurable excitement in an oc'fy casional skirmish with a tramcar or 1 - some other playful and skittish . ob- , ft jeot. The entrance to the bridge p was tastefully railed off with a piece, ft / of string, which had been rescued - from one of the job lots of goods sent '/ to the destructor. It had originally '« been decided to utilise a piece of 'Tj fancy tape for the purpose, but after '£, counting up the contents of the <j " municipal treasury chest, the Coun#V cd came to the conclusion that reh trenchment was necessary. So ** string was employed instead of tape. * Punctually at 3 o'clock, His Wor- ) ship the Mayor (Mr C. D. Grey) arL rived in a cab, with Wo yards .of |C opening address and an attack of ? j, toothache. He was accompanied by *■ his predecessor, in office (Mr Arthur ft Myers), Who, in addition to other \ things, was wearing the latest style {V of bell-topper, purchased in London, '"-- and a smile modelled on that emit ployed by King Edward when open- £„ mg the British Parliament. In reply if to th© anxious, queries of the bystander ers, Mr Myers explained that he was not in pain. It was only a smile, If. 2nd they needn't be afraid. It hurt fr his face somewhat, but duty was fre--7 quently painful, and he was prepared V to endure more than that for- the > welfare of the city. He reassured il them considerably by adding that the s£ smile wasn't dhronic, and that as V soob as the ceremony was over he \ ' would get Bennie to remove it by ft means of sandpaper. He further tt added that he was teaching the smile $ to Leo, which was the cause of the f latter's absence on that- auspicious fe£' occasion. In fact, he regretted to ¥- < state that Leo's,face was in a sling. i The Mayor and ex-Mayor having %' fought their way to the front through f l ' vthe mob, the Mayor proceeded to de- [& liver his-opening address, which be- & gan as follows :— 'd.* "To th© Rev. Hezekiah Jereboam " Melchisedek Mugwumps, General f~\) Secretary to the Mission for Supply&,'ing Bath Buns to.the Natives of kf Terra del Fuego.—Dear and -Reverie- end Sir,—On behalf of the City of *£h Auckland, I have much pleasure in |f extending to you a hearty welcome W K on your arrival upon" our shores, W, and trust that jour collections wall R. be large ones. The supplying of it Bath Buns to the natives of Terra p?" del Fuego is a cause that should E&y appeal to "every right-minded pergT'eoii, and I feel wre ——" , P. * At this point His Worship abruptly IT broke off, and was understood to E'~ say that he was afraid he had -mad-. & vertently brought the wrong address • W>' with him. However, it didn't mat-. By ter very much,- and if Councillor M Nerheny would be good enough to. ft*'lead him the portable dictionary Wt that he always carried about with jg& him, he (His Worship) would read IRVem a page or two out of that. W It would be probably far more filling fethan any mere stereotyped address B& could possibly be. P> Mr P. J. Nerheny replied that he Wilt ires euphemistically sorry to say that |k\ne had completely worn out his dicffifc Jbionary in hunting up suitable words. fSiiin. which to give his opinion of the Kresult of the city mayoral ©lection.

He was never disposed to be contumacious, however, so he was willing to fill in the gap by singing "The Wearin' ©' the Green," if Messrs L. J. Bagnall and W. Richardson promised to join him in the chorus. Here Mir jßagnall hurriedly retired behind a tombstone, and as Mr Richardson was engaged in strengthening his official soap-box with, a view to delivering an ultra strenuous oration on the subject of the mayoral election, Mr Nerheny's kind offer had perforce to be rejected with regret. Under the ciro lmstanoes, His Worship announced that he. would call upon Mr Arthur Myers >to-favour the mob with a few remarks. Mr Myers began by reading some letters of apology for non-attend-ance. Mr J. W. Taylor, M.A.. wrote to say that as* he understood there was to be no .free banquet connected with the proceedings, he did not see his way clear to be present. He thought thero had been gross bungling somewhere. Mr B. M. Myers wrote to intimate that in view of the opening of the hunting season on the following Saturday, he was engaged in cutting Bowler's corns.; He regretted to add that the majority of subs, weire overdue, and itT was time the members of the association got a wriggle'on in this respect. Mr Arthur Myers said that he fancied bis brother .must have, adthis letter to the wrong shop. -$b Was clear that it ,/as intended for the Old' Thames Boys' Association. Continuing, Mr Myers said that he had received several other letters and telegrams from .leading 'citizens, most of whom, he regretted to say, seemed to be suffering from a bad attack of, absentmindedness, of something else, as they had forgotten to stamp their letters, and had sent their telegrams on the "collect" principle. However, was a mero detail, he would now have nruch pleasure in giving those present a history of f m ro-concret© from the days of Pompeii to the present time. Here your reporter regrets to say that,, feeling thirsty, he adjourned to an adjacent tea-room kept by a Scottish gentleman 1 amed Molloy, over the road, and had a cup of tea and a bun (we don't think.—Ed.). On returning, your reporter was just in. time to witness the presentation of a Waterbury watch to hisWorship the Mayor by Mr. Wobbertson, of. the Very Concrete Com- . pany. This spleudid gift was deeply appreciated by the, Mayor, who was understood to remark that it would come in handy for the collection box of the next missionary who happened along. '.'•'••'■ -■■-.-', . . v.; The City Councillors then formally it augufated traffic over the bridge, by I eihg trundled across in tin-mounted wheelbarrows. TJnfortunately, the miscreant who was . propelling Mr John Pattsrson's rickshaw, fell foul of Mr Patterson's artistic legs, with the result that Mr Patterson was capsized; "and badly damaged his 'belltopper, which is or. ly brought out on State occasions. Your reporter, being the scoundrel who was shoving the barrow, very wisely decamped,-so for an account of the remainder of the proceedings, please see the daily papers. ... ■^■■ff— 1 —

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Bibliographic details

Opening of the Grafting Bridge., Observer, Volume XXX, Issue 34, 7 May 1910

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Opening of the Grafting Bridge. Observer, Volume XXX, Issue 34, 7 May 1910

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