Today’s central city poonami seals it: Wellington is New Zealand’s capital of crap, reports Emily Writes
Wellington city’s shitty problem might be worrying residents but faecal enthusiast Steve Steverson says it couldn’t have come at a better time for those hosting the Annual National Undercarriage Symposium.
Steverson said the team behind the poo-fest were thrilled when a giant fatberg spilled 20,000 litres of sewage into Wellington Harbour last week. Today a blocked drain caused a poonami in central Wellington.
“We knew Wellington was the perfect venue for us to bring together those who admire and appreciate turds. Everyone in the faecal industry knows Wellington’s sewage system is a disaster so you’re guaranteed to have at least one public bowel explosion when you visit. But to have a fatberg followed by another enormous sewage event? Wellington is treating us very well.”
Following the failure of two pipes on Oriental Parade last week, a giant fatberg in a wastewater pipe on Featherston Street forced sewage to be diverted into the harbour.
“We were having our excretion exhibition at a bar on Queens Wharf when all this shit just started flowing. It was magical. I tell you, it was a great day for poo in Wellington.”
Over three days last year an Olympic swimming pool’s worth of sewage flowed into the harbour every day. So it’s quite a statement to say this event was even more joyous than the last.
Wellington mayor Andy Foster-Jackson said he was thrilled that the city could support the poo conference. As he leapt into the harbour, mouth wide open, he yelled “delicious!”
Today’s spill on Hopper Street near Mt Cook was described as “glorious” by Steverson.
“Look, Wellington’s pipes are an average of 51 years. According to Water New Zealand over a third are in poor condition. This is just going to keep happening and I for one am grateful that Wellington Council, Water Wellington and Wellington Greater Regional Council have not prioritised stopping literal floods of shit from streaming down Wellington streets and into your waterways. We poo enthusiasts represent a new kind of tourism. A bowel movement if you will. And we will be swamping your city in droves, just like the toxic sludge at Houghton Bay.”
It seems many agree with Steverson. A surfer who emerged from the waves at Houghton Bay glowing green said between retching “You can’t beat Wellington on a good day. I’m going to hit Titahi Bay next.”
Last weekend Titahi Bay was closed to swimmers due to the health risks from poo flowing into the water from the toilet block. In March Wellington Water warned that swimming or entering the water there could lead to fever, vomiting, diarrhoea, or infections of the eyes, ears, nose and throat.
A group of swimmers at Titahi Bay said they’d head to Owhiro Bay instead. Owhiro Bay beach is a great swimming spot if you’re wanting to lose a large amount of weight fast. Its stream’s faecal contamination hit almost 400 times above safe levels for e-coli in July. But not everyone is happy about it. A duck I interviewed in the pond said he was tired of swimming up shit creek.
“Look, I’ll be honest – this is hurting me. I’m a duck. I just want to swim and quack and maybe make some ducklings you know? Do you know how hard it is for me to get a man when I have shit literally everywhere? I bring a drake home and look they are not discerning, but even the dudes I bring home are like ‘sorry, I cannot bang when we are knee-deep in shit’. It’s ruining my life.”
A local drake agreed. “The out-of-town birds, they don’t understand that this is Wellington. They want clean water, but it’s like ‘Hello! This is absolutely positively just how it is. You got any bread?”
To add insult to injury, the ducks must watch poo trucks travel past them hourly to take sewage to from Moa Point to the southern landfill, after a pipeline 200 metres underneath Mt Albert broke. Wellington Water said they fixed the pipe in May.
This was news to Island Bay, a suburb known for having an octopus and a big slide. When reached by phone, the suburb had this response:
“What was that overpowering stench in August then? How come Severn Street had its water cut off 20 times in three years then? Look, I don’t know if I can say this but quite frankly Wellington Water can succhiami il cazzo.”
Steverson says the only thing Wellingtonians can do is embrace their status as the poo capital of New Zealand. “You’re number one at number twos and that means something. That’s special,” he said.
A spokesperson for Wellington Water said “HELP HELP I’M COVERED IN SHIT. HELP ME THERE’S SHIT EVERYWHERE”.
Subscribe to Rec Room a weekly newsletter delivering The Spinoff’s latest videos, podcasts and other recommendations straight to your inbox.