Without going into too much detail of why I know this - I've recently discovered another peculiar New Zealand building practice which was common in the post-WW2 era of building lots and lots and lots of houses, quickly.
And it is: throwing all the building cr*p on the ground (mostly broken roof tiles, but also bits of wood and rubbish), and then just laying the floorboards over it all.
Basically: if you happen to live in a 50's-70's house and approach an insulation company to get the underfloor insulated, it is very likely that the quote is going to include the work of several people first crawling under the house and sweeping up all the roof tiles (which are notoriously sharp).
Awesome. It somehow had never occurred to me that there was an era where houses had roofs built first (so that all the broken tiles could be chucked down) and then floors laid after, to cover the mess. That it... made sense to people do it that way.
But on the other hand: I should probably stop the smug gloating. In a hundred years' time there will be people who will look at my generation and say, "Wow, it had never occurred to me that there was an era where people drove petrol-powered cars everywhere, insisted on living in big homes with strips of lawn all around and buried otherwise recyclable items in giant landfills. That it made sense to them, to do it that way."
I find it so infuriatingly unfair that I am going to die one day! Because... there is so much I am going to miss, so much discovery I am not going to witness.
I want to see when people start travelling to other planets - maybe even other solar systems? I want to see the technology that will be used to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. I want to know how gene sequencing will become commonplace in everyday medical practice. I want to... there's so much I want to know and experience, and I am so angry that some of the stuff I am not going to be around for!
Speaking of future technologies: has it ever occurred to you that we, as a humankind, are on the verge of creating computers that will be capable of creating other computers? That, basically, we'll soon (probably) create stuff that will be capable of creating other stuff, or themselves?
And speaking of humankind: do you also find it fascinating to think that out of all the species on the planet, humans somehow happened to develop to a point where we started making cars? Building cathedrals? Building space shuttles?
Because technically we are just... animals.
I should probably mention that when doing dishes and preparing dinner, I had PBS's documentary about the Columbia space shuttle disaster playing in the background and... it's so fascinating, the whole idea that humans are able to build stuff like that.
Or the whole Apollo 13 saga, with its couple of plastic bags, some duct-tape and a spaceship that upon re-entering Earth's atmosphere used less electricity than my toaster.
It just blows my mind that humans can come up with stuff like that.