Home' Auckland City Harbour News : August 16th 2013 Contents Prepare for death to get more out of life
By JESS LEE
Clock's ticking: Sir Ray Avery is living every day to the fullest like it was his last.
Photo: JESS LEE
Making plans: Public law expert Mai
Chen is the brainchild behind a new
website encouraging New Zealanders
to live their lives to the full while
preparing for death by making a will.
Photo: MARK MITCHELL
Go to aucklandcityharbour
news.co.nz and click on Latest
Edition to watch a video of Sir Ray
Avery talking about his philosophy
If today was your last day on earth,
how would you spend it?
If it would be a day spent ticking
off a never-ending bucket list or
one filled with regret then maybe
you aren t living the life you should
Award-winning scientist, busi-
nessman and philanthropist Sir
Ray Avery, estimates he has less
than 4000 days left of his life and
he intends to make each one count.
The father-of-two is supporting
the newly launched Will to Live
website which aims to help people
better prepare for death so they
can focus on getting the most out of
The website provides the tools to
help people create their own wills
and bucket lists and allows them to
read the bucket lists of some well-
known and everyday New Zealand-
We re all going to die, Sir Ray
For most people it will be a big
surprise but it won t for me
because I m planning it backwards.
If you ve got this great big buc-
ket list at the end of your life it
probably means that you haven t
lived your life properly because you
haven t done it and you wanted to.
Don t just do things at the end
of your life, he says.
Everyone is born with about
30,000 days to live.
I know I am in the last tenth of
my life, so every day I dream big
and go for it.
If you are starting a business or
some endeavour you plan what you
are going to do and, if you are
smart, you have an exit strategy,
Sir Ray says.
But few of us apply that thinking
to our own lives.
It s not just about making a will.
It s about willing ourselves to
live our lives better than we do.
Live your life according to a plan,
I m not saying that it has to be
a standard-operating system that
is very sterile and dour but the
worst part is waking up at 78 years
old on your deathbed realising you
haven t achieved anything.
Sir Ray s two young daughters
are his main driving force.
When I die I want them to say;
Dad was a good guy. Not just to us,
but he tried to make the world a
better place .
Olympic gold medallist Barbara
Kendall says she still likes to
plan ahead for where she ll be and
what she ll be doing in 20 years
If the world ended tomorrow I
could die a really happy person
because I ve done everything I
wanted to do so far with the time
I ve got, she says.
Aucklanders are the worst
nationwide for not having wills,
according to figures released by
Public Trust last year, with 57 per
cent without one.
Public law expert Mai Chen is
the brainchild behind Will to Live.
I am concerned that so many
people in New Zealand haven t
planned for the future, she says.
I wanted to make it easier for
them to protect those who are
important to them and to give
them the motivation to get on and
live their lives to the full.
Go to willtolive.co.nz for more
4 AUCKLAND CITY HARBOUR NEWS, AUGUST 16, 2013
Sir Ray Avery, scientist,
businessman and philanthro-
pist: Remarry my one and
only wife surrounded by our
friends and family.
Nadia Lim, MasterChef New
Zealand winner, entrepreneur
and advocate for healthy eat-
ing: Live in the bush for at
least a month with no mobile
phone, computer etc..
Barbara Kendall, Olympic
gold medallist: Sailing a
45-foot catamaran around the
Moana Maniapoto, musician
and song-writer: See both my
children find their soul
Clown doctors dispense the best medicine
By KATASHA McCULLOUGH
Clowning around: Ruth Dudding, right, as Dr Priscilla Pick-Me-Up and Zack McCracken as Dr Cracker at Starship hospital.
Multi-talented: Actress Ruth Dudding
A red nose, a silly hat and some
improv skills are all Ruth Dudding
needs to bring smiles to the faces of
The actress visits Starship hos-
pital once a week as her alter ego
Dr Priscilla Pick-Me-Up, a clown
Clown doctors were invented in
Belgium and undergo specific
training, learning hospital
protocols and basic psychology and
Ms Dudding says you need to be
empathetic and be able to read a
We re in very tense situations
sometimes, where children are in a
lot of pain. There could be a lot of
activity that is going on around the
bed of a child which is alarming to
them. You learn to deal with it.
The clown doctors work in pairs
and visit everyone from 10-week-
old babies up to 15-year-olds.
Ms Dudding says the work is
It s my job and I love it and I
love the children. It s about rising
above it for them and taking them
to a different place away from their
boredom or their pain or their anx-
Ms Dudding has been working a
double role for the Clown Doctors
New Zealand Charitable Trust.
Her first thought when she
heard about clown doctors was not
to be one but to make a document-
ary about them.
She filmed the first part of the
audition workshop before joining in
She was offered a job as a clown
doctor and the opportunity to keep
Ms Dudding now has 17 hours of
footage which she hopes to take
some time off to edit.
She has been juggling her clown
doctor work with rehearsals for
upcoming play Motel.
Ms Dudding will hang up her red
nose in mid-August to play Janet in
the drama, a reasonably well-
heeled woman who suspects her
husband of being unfaithful and
decides to investigate.
In her preparation for the role
Ms Dudding spoke to private
investigator Julia Hartley Moore,
who specialises in infidelity cases.
The actor who plays the motel
owner will spend a week working
in a real motel and another whose
character has cancer chatted to a
doctor to ensure her portrayal is
Ms Dudding says the play is dia-
metrically opposed to be being a
She will play the same character
each night whereas as a clown doc-
tor she could be doing anything
from blowing bubbles or singing to
babies to performing a whole im-
It really keeps your creativity
and acting skills honed, Ms Dud-
The Clown Doctors New Zealand
Charitable Trust wants to reach
more wards and visit the elderly as
well, but needs more funding.
The clown doctors are paid
through donations to the trust.
Motel is on at 8pm until August
24 at the Basement Theatre, Lower
Greys Ave, in the central city.
There is a 2pm matinee on
August 24 and no shows on
Tickets are $30 for adults and
$25 for seniors and students from
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